The Inman Aligner™ vs Invisalign®
If you are exploring cosmetic options for straightening your teeth, the choices can be overwhelming. On the one hand, Invisalign is a popular alternative to traditional metal braces. This system is an effective option for comprehensive but discreet orthodontic treatment. It is typically recommended to patients who hope to correct crooked teeth or crowding throughout their smile. However, Invisalign trays must be worn 22 hours every day for at least 18 months for the best results. Typically, the aligners are switched out every two weeks and patients must see their dentist for follow-up appointments every four to six weeks throughout the duration of treatment.
The Inman Aligner, on the other hand, is specifically designed for patients who want to straighten the front four teeth and reduce crowding in that area. Many patients who choose this option have previously undergone orthodontic treatment, but have noticed their front teeth shifting because they did not wear their retainer. Treatment using the Inman Aligner is focused, rather than comprehensive. As a result, patients can achieve their desired outcome much more quickly. Furthermore, the treatment is delivered through only one removable aligner, rather than several. Combined, these factors significantly lower the cost of the Inman Aligner.
Compared to traditional orthodontics and other cosmetic procedures, the Inman Aligner offers many benefits:
- Short-term treatment
- No brackets, wires, or rubber bands
- Removability for convenient brushing, flossing, cleaning, and eating
- No visits to adjust wires or increase pressure
- No alteration of natural teeth, as is necessary with veneers, crowns, and cosmetic bonding
In addition to the convenience and comfort that the Inman Aligner offers, the treatment can also improve your oral health in many of the same ways that traditional orthodontic treatment can. A crooked teeth can have a profound effect on the way your bite fits together: when your teeth are not aligned properly, it can lead to erosion of the enamel, tooth sensitivity, teeth grinding, temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder, and uneven wear. Additionally, crooked teeth can make it difficult to brush and floss effectively, leaving bacteria in hard-to-reach areas. This can lead to a host of other issues, including decay and periodontal disease. Orthodontic treatment can play an important role in preventive care by minimizing this risk and making your smile easier to clean and less prone to wear and tear.
The Treatment Process
If the Inman Aligner is suitable for your goals, we can take impressions of your teeth. These detailed molds are sent to a specialized lab where highly accurate 3-D printed models are used to create a customized appliance. When your aligner is ready, you can return to our office, where we will ensure that it fits comfortably.
In most cases, you will only need to return to the office every two to three weeks so that we can check your progress.
Throughout your treatment, you will need to wear your appliance at least 16 to 20 hours daily to guarantee the best outcome. If worn less often, your treatment timeline may take longer than originally planned. In most cases, you will only need to return to the office every two to three weeks so that we can check your progress. Once your therapy is complete, you will need to wear a retainer to maintain proper dental alignment. You can discuss the various retainer options available with Dr. Carpenter or Dr. Jobalia.
FAQs about the Inman Aligner
Patients considering the Inman Aligner often have many questions regarding the process. We have answered some of the most common questions our patients ask us about the Inman Aligner so that you can get all the information you need before your consultation:
- Will treatment with the Inman Aligner be uncomfortable?
- No. Because the Inman Aligner uses gentle pressure, the appliances are usually tolerated much better than traditional orthodontics. If you experience mild discomfort during the first few days of treatment, over-the-counter pain medication, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen, should suffice.
- Will the Inman Aligner affect my speech? How long will it take to get used to the Inman Aligner?
- Yes. For the first few days, there is a small learning curve associated with your new device. However, most patients acclimate to the appliance in about a week.
- Won’t my teeth move back after my treatment is completed?
- Wearing a retainer after your orthodontic treatment can prevent movement in the future. This is not unique to the Inman Aligner. Retainers are typically recommended to maintain results after any orthodontic treatment. We typically give our patients the choice between a removable or fixed retainer. The removable retainer should be worn approximately 3 to 4 times per week, while a fixed retainer is permanently bonded to the back of the teeth and is not visible when you smile.
- Can the Inman Aligner treatment be combined with other dental procedures, such as teeth whitening?
- Yes. In fact, many of our patients choose to combine their orthodontic treatment with teeth whitening or porcelain veneers. This offers a comprehensive and dramatic result, but remains much more conservative than a full-arch reconstruction.
Achieve a Straighter Smile
We offer a wide range of cosmetic and restorative dental treatments to suit every patient’s needs, budget, and lifestyle. Request an appointment online or call us at (847) 251-5004 to schedule your consultation to find out if the Inman Aligner is a good option for you.