You’re looking to straighten your teeth. You’re thinking about getting Invisalign braces, in particular. But, you’re wondering: how long does the Invisalign process take? 

In truth, it depends on a number of factors. So, to give you a better idea, we’re going to explore the Invisalign timeline in more detail below. Let’s get into it. 

How Long Does the Invisalign Process Take?

Though results can vary from person to person, the Invisalign process generally takes between 12 and 18 months. Note, however, that it’s not uncommon to notice results within the first few weeks of use. 

Some of the factors that affect the duration of Invisalign use include the following.

The Age of the Patient

Generally speaking, Invisalign works faster for younger patients than it does for older ones. This is because younger patients’ teeth and jaws are in the process of taking shape, and are therefore much more malleable. Conversely, older patients’ teeth and jaws are locked in place, and can’t be manipulated as easily. 

It’s wise for a person to get Invisalign as soon as all of his or her adult teeth have grown in. This usually occurs in early adolescence. 

The State of the Teeth

Not all sets of teeth are created equal. Some sets of teeth are almost entirely straight. Other sets of teeth are exceedingly crooked. Most fall somewhere in the middle. 

As you might expect, the more crooked your teeth are, the longer it will take for Invisalign to fix them. This is because they will require more shifting, and more shifting equals more time. 

The Quality of Use

Invisalign braces are advantageous in that they can be taken out. However, this can be both a blessing and a curse.

It’s a blessing in that it allows users to brush their teeth fully and get a little break from discomfort. However, it’s a curse in that there’s a risk of having them out for too long. 

Keeping your Invisalign braces out of your mouth for too long a time will undoubtedly delay the process. You need to have them in your mouth for 20 to 22 hours every day. If they aren’t in your mouth for this length of time, you will run into complications. 

The Typical Invisalign Timeline

Now, you might be curious as to the typical timeline of getting and using Invisalign braces. We’ll discuss it in detail below. 

Initial Meeting With Orthodontist

The Invisalign process begins with an initial meeting with your orthodontist. At this meeting, your orthodontist will discuss with you the specifics of Invisalign. He or she will ask you questions, take a look at your teeth, and determine whether you’re a viable candidate. 

In some cases, the orthodontist will use the first appointment as an opportunity to take impressions and x-rays of the patient’s teeth. These will then be sent to Invisalign, where they will manufacture customized braces to suit the patient. 

Note, if dental impressions aren’t taken at the initial appointment, they will be taken at a later date. This is, of course, provided that you’re a viable candidate for Invisalign.

Return for the First Fitting

Within a few weeks of receiving dental impressions and x-rays, Invisalign should be finished manufacturing your trays. Once they have finished, they will send the trays to your orthodontist, who will call you in for a fitting appointment. 

At your fitting appointment, your orthodontist will have you insert your Invisalign trays, ensuring that they fit correctly. If they do, you’ll go home with them. If they don’t, new impressions will need to be taken, and the process thus far will need to be repeated. 

Regular Checkups

Once you’ve been fitted for your first set of trays, you’ll need to return to your orthodontist for regular checkups. At these checkups, your orthodontist will assess your teeth, determining whether the treatment is on track. 

From time to time, after a set of trays have done all they can, you’ll be given new trays. It takes several sets of trays in order for teeth to be straightened entirely. 

Final Assessment

Eventually, after a year to year and a half of use, your treatment will be over. Your teeth will be straight and you’ll be able to see your orthodontist for your final assessment. 

At this assessment, your orthodontist will ensure that everything is where it should be. If it is, your treatment will be over. If it isn’t, you’ll need to have more trays manufactured for you. 

The Benefits of Invisalign

There are many benefits that come with getting Invisalign. The biggest of these benefits include the following. 

Difficult to Notice

Invisalign braces are, more or less, transparent. As such, when they’re on the teeth, they’re almost impossible to see. When wearing Invisalign, you’ll appear to have a white, undisturbed smile.

Can Be Taken Out

Want to eat without a corrective device in your mouth? Hoping to brush your teeth fully? Invisalign can be taken out, and thus allow you to do so. 

Work Quickly 

If you’re like a lot of people, you want to get the teeth straightening process out of the way as quickly as possible. If so, Invisalign would be a terrific choice. Generally speaking, it takes no more than a year to a year and a half to complete Invisalign treatment. 

Looking for an Orthodontist in Billings?

What do you think? Are Invisalign and the Invisalign timeline right for you? If so and if you’re looking for an orthodontist in Billings, we here at Bennion Lambourne Orthodontics are the people to see. 

We’ve provided Invisalign treatment to countless patients throughout the Billings area. We look forward to helping you next. 

Contact us now to schedule an appointment!