Most teenagers are very self-aware and often concerned about their physical appearance, from how they look to what they wear. While many teens do require orthodontic treatment, they may not want to be seen wearing traditional metal braces. Dr. Michael Ashcraft offers Invisalign® Teen, a practically invisible solution designed for younger Little Rock, AR patients. Like those created for adults, Invisalign trays are made of clear, smooth plastic and gradually reposition the teeth to correct a range of occlusal problems. The Invisalign Teen system can also safely and efficiently address eruption and complex issues and offers compliance indicators along with replacement aligners if the originals become lost. If your teen needs braces but is averse to the idea of wearing brackets and wires, schedule a consultation at Ashcraft Orthodontics Little Rock to learn more about the Invisalign Teen system.
About Invisalign Teen
What is the difference between Invisalign Teen and regular Invisalign? Invisalign Teen is specifically geared to meet the unique needs of adolescents, including the complex requirements of a developing jaw and compliance concerns. Orthodontic treatment is a significant investment in both time and money. Dr. Ashcraft and our team understand that parents may hesitate to take on the expense of Invisalign given these concerns surrounding adolescent patients. However, Invisalign Teen has built-in compliance indicators to help keep your teen on track.
We are happy to offer this unique approach to make certain your teen achieves their desired and needed results for their smile. Invisalign Teen features three unique factors that help make this possible:
• Eruption Tabs: Since not all adolescent patients have fully completed the eruption process, the makers of Invisalign Teen have built a feature into these aligners that allow for eruption of the last molars. This ensures that these important teeth grow into the correct space without crowding or impacting other teeth.
• Compliance Indicators: Each aligner in the Invisalign Teen system contains a small blue dot toward the back of the appliance. Since this color fades with use, Dr. Ashcraft will know if the aligners are being worn properly. Compliance indicators can help keep your teen accountable for ensuring that they wear their trays at least 20 – 22 hours each day. Inadequate use of aligner trays can prolong treatment time and ultimately the end results.
• Extra Replacement Aligners: We understand and expect that sometimes aligners go missing or are damaged. To account for any accidents or loss, we add six substitute aligners into the Invisalign Teen treatment system. Please contact Ashcraft Orthodontics right away if your teen requires a replacement.
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Your teen may be an ideal candidate for Invisalign Teen if they have crowded or crooked teeth, gaps between teeth, rotated teeth, or an overbite, underbite, or crossbite. Invisalign Teen clear aligners may also be a great alternative to metal braces for kids who play sports or metal instruments as the brackets and wires of traditional braces may cause injury if oral impact occurs.
To determine the best treatment option for your teen, Dr. Ashcraft will perform a clinical and diagnostic examination to understand how the teeth are positioned within the jawbone. We will then present the treatment options suited to meet your teen's needs and let you know if Invisalign Teen is a viable solution. The time spent wearing Invisalign aligners varies among patients and compliance factors; however, most Invisalign treatment plans range between 1 – 2 years.
What to Expect
During your teenager's treatment consultation with Dr. Ashcraft, we will discuss the Invisalign process and determine how your teen feels about wearing the aligner trays, including the importance of treatment compliance. Since Invisalign aligners are removable, it is important for your teenager to understand the need to wear them for at least 20 hours each day. Each set of aligners is worn for about two weeks and then traded out for the next in the series.
Invisalign Teen aligners are unique in that they have a blue compliance indicator dot that fades with use. This dot tells us if the aligners are being worn as recommended and can also help remind your teen of when to change them out for the next set. To create your teen's aligners, we will take a digital panoramic x-ray of the mouth and intraoral digital scans of the upper and lower teeth. This data will then be sent to our partner Invisalign lab where your teen's trays will be custom created to fit their teeth.
Your teen will need to maintain follow-up visits at our practice every 2 – 4 weeks so that Dr. Ashcraft can assess their treatment progress. During these visits, we will also check the compliance indicator dots and provide any necessary substitute aligners. Your teen must wear their aligners for 20 – 22 hours each day but can remove them when eating and for brushing and flossing the teeth. The teeth should be clean before placing the aligner trays back in the mouth. One of the major benefits of Invisalign is not having to brush and floss around brackets and wires, which is challenging. This feature allows for better home care and minimizes the risk of tooth decay and gingivitis.
Invisalign Teen may be covered, in part, by dental insurance. Before your teen's treatment begins, we will contact your provider to determine coverage amounts. At Ashcraft Orthodontics Little Rock, we accept most major insurance plans and can file your claim on your behalf. If you have any out-of-pocket costs, we can let you know about our convenient payment methods, including financing through CareCredit® and our flexible in-house payment plan.
Give your teen a healthy, picture-worthy smile with the clear aligner system from Invisalign at Ashcraft Orthodontics Little Rock. If your teen feels embarrassed by the idea of wearing metal braces or is involved in sports, Invisalign Teen may be an ideal treatment solution. Our skilled orthodontist is experienced in helping teens through the process of achieving a healthy, beautiful smile with Invisalign procedures. Reach out to our Little Rock, AR orthodontic specialty practice today and schedule a treatment consultant with Dr. Ashcraft.