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How Many Invisalign® Aligners Do I Need?

By Edward Sauer on September 10, 2018


Teenage girl smiling as she receives Invisalign alignerA hallmark of a beautiful smile is straight teeth. For people with minor to moderate teeth alignment issues, Invisalign® is a popular teeth-straightening solution. This dental alignment system uses clear plastic aligners, which are switched out every two weeks, to discreetly move their teeth into alignment.

Many patients considering Invisalign wonder how long the treatment will take. The answer is that this largely depends on the extent of your alignment problems, and therefore, how many aligners you will require.

At Shemen Dental Group in Amarillo, TX, we can determine how many aligners are needed to help you achieve your desired results. We can answer this question, specific to your case, following a consultation.

Planning Your Invisalign Treatment

During your consultation, you and your doctor will discuss your smile goals and oral health. Any oral health problems, such as periodontal disease or dental decay, will first need to be addressed.

During the planning phase, images and impressions will be taken of your teeth. Based on this information, the specifics of your plan, including how long it will be and how many aligner trays you need, will be determined.  

Factors Affecting Treatment Times and Number of Aligners

As mentioned, the length of Invisalign treatment and the number of aligners required depends on the severity of the case, as well as the patient’s age.

As you might expect, patients with greater tooth and jaw alignment issues will have longer treatment times than people with more mild alignment needs. Generally speaking, most adults will need a year to achieve their desired results. Since new trays are given every two weeks, this amounts to about 26 aligners for a year of treatment.

Adolescents usually have a greater degree of variance in their treatment times since their mouths are still developing.

The Potential Number of Trays Needed

Typically, a patient’s Invisalign treatment lasts about a year. As such, most patients go through about 20 to 30 Invisalign trays.

On the extreme end, a patient that needs greater dental adjustment may go through about 50 trays over the course of treatment. Alternatively, patients with very minor, cosmetic adjustments may only need 20 weeks of correction, or about 10 aligning trays.

Factors That Can Extend Treatment Times

In order for patients to stay on track and receive a new aligner every two weeks, they need to wear their aligners at least 22 hours a day. Ideally, aligners should only be removed for eating and oral hygiene routines.

By not wearing your tray for the daily minimum, it may take longer for your teeth to move. This will delay when you can wear your next tray, although it will not necessarily change the number of aligners that you need.

Learn More about Your Invisalign Treatment

The benefits of straight teeth include boosted confidence and reduced likelihood of developing dental decay. Find out how this treatment can improve your smile and how long your treatment might take by scheduling a consultation. You can speak to us at (806) 358-2472 or contact us online.

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