FAQ

Frequently Asked Questions about Invisalign:

invisalign image

What are aligners made of, and what do they look like?

The virtually invisible aligners, which are made of a thermoplastic material uniquely developed for the Invisalign treatment plan, look similar to teeth-whitening trays. A series of Invisalign aligners are custom-made for you, to move your teeth in the sequence determined by your doctor.

How do the aligners straighten teeth?

Over the course of treatment, you will be supplied with a series of aligners. Each aligner will make slight adjustments to tooth position, a process that is mapped out in advance by your doctor, specifically for your situation. When the aligners are placed on the teeth, they cause the teeth to gradually shift from their current position. After approximately two weeks, you will begin using the next set of aligners, which will continue the teeth straightening process.

How will invisalign effectively move my teeth?

Through the use of our patented thermoplastic design, Invisalign aligners move your teeth through the appropriate placement of controlled force. The main difference is that Invisalign not only controls the force, but also the timing of the force application. During each stage, only certain teeth are allowed to move. These movements are determined by your doctor as he or she maps out your unique Invisalign treatment plan.

What are the primary benefits of invisalign?

Invisalign aligners are virtually invisible. No one may even notice that you’re wearing them, making Invisalign a seamless fit with your lifestyle. Invisalign aligners are removable. For the best results and a timely outcome, aligners should be worn for 20 to 22 hours per day. However, unlike with braces, you have the flexibility to remove your aligners to eat and drink what you want during treatment. And you can also remove the aligners to brush and floss as you normally would, for fresh breath and good oral hygiene. There are no metal brackets or wires that could cause irritation to your mouth, an advantage over traditional braces. Plus, since your office visits during treatment don’t involve metal or wire adjustments, you’ll likely spend less time in the doctor’s chair. Invisalign allows you to view your virtual results and treatment plan before you start so you can see how your straight teeth will look when your treatment is complete. Instead of imagining how much better it can be, you’ll be able to see it for yourself.

What is the treatment process and how long will the treatment take?

The length of treatment depends on the severity of your case and can only be determined by your doctor; however, the average case takes about 12 months for adults. The length of time necessary for a teen patient may vary and can be determined by your doctor.

How do I get started with invisalign?

Make sure you trust your smile to an experienced doctor who uses the latest techniques. Find the most experienced Invisalign-trained Preferred Provider. Call us at (650) 324-4900 for a complimentary consultation.

How often must I wear my aligners?

We find that aligners are most effective when worn 20 to 22 hours per day and removed only for eating, brushing and flossing.

How often must I see my doctor?

We will schedule regular appointments usually about once every four to six weeks. The goal of these visits is to ensure that your treatment is progressing as planned.

What are the costs and payment options and how much does invisalign cost?

We know cost is a big question for anyone considering orthodontic work. In most cases, Invisalign treatment is comparable to the cost of traditional braces. However, as with other medical treatments, only your doctor can determine the cost, based on your specific needs. Other factors may include your treatment goals, the difficulty of your case, how long you are in treatment, where you live, your orthodontic insurance coverage, and additional factors determined by your dentist or orthodontist. In the U.S., the cost of Invisalign treatment ranges from $3,500 to $8,000, with the national average at about $5,000.

Will my insurance cover invisalign?

Because medical benefits differ significantly from policy to policy, you should review your personal coverage plan. However, in general, if a patient has orthodontic coverage, Invisalign should be covered to the same extent as conventional braces.

What payment options are available for invisalign?

Most doctors will help you find options to make your treatment affordable. Many offices offer flexible and affordable monthly payment plans, often with no down payment and no interest. We also offer financing through CareCredit or ChaseHealthAdvance. Specifically designed for health-care expenses, both options are third-party patient financing programs that make it easier for you to get the treatment or procedures you want and need. Visit chasehealthadvance.com and carecredit.com for more information, or call us at (650) 324-4900 to speak to our financial coordinator.