You were stoked to get Invisalign, and you promised yourself you’d follow your orthodontist’s directions exactly. Unfortunately, some Invisalign patients slide.

This is especially common in teens (no surprise), which is why the Invisalign system has a special teen program with up to six free aligner replacements. However, it’s not just lost aligners than are an issue. If you take out your aligner for more hours per day than allowed, skip days entirely or otherwise don’t follow your treatment plan, you’re only hurting yourself.

Nothing terrible will happen if you don’t follow your orthodontist’s instructions — the worst-case scenario is that your teeth will remain crooked.

In many cases, especially with adults, you may need to use a night retainer indefinitely even after your treatment plan. Teeth can shift, which is what Invisalign counts on to straighten your teeth. Bad habits like clenching, poor chewing, grinding and more can move your teeth out of post-Invisalign perfect alignment.

Stacking the Odds

It’s common to be really committed to your treatment plan for the first few weeks or even months, and then falter once your teeth start looking better. Just because you think they’re or good enough doesn’t mean they are.

Your orthodontist isn’t just looking at aesthetics. He or she is also looking at proper bite and alignment for a healthy mouth. You want a healthy mouth too, not just an attractive smile.

If you stop using your Invisalign early, it may take much longer for it to work — or it may not work at all! Ideally, you want your aligner in whenever you’re not eating, drinking or brushing your teeth. The longer the aligner is in each day, the better and faster it will work.

The upside — and in some cases downside — to a removable orthodontic device is that the plan is totally in your hands.

Helping Kids with Treatment

Invisalign can be a lifesaver for teens who are petrified of having braces. However, some parents are rightfully wary.

Teens are notorious for losing items and not following directions, and they aren’t exactly renowned for their oral hygiene practices either. Only you can decide if your teen is responsible enough for Invisalign — and only after consulting an orthodontist to make sure it’s a feasible treatment plan for his or her teeth.

Just like any orthodontic plan, Invisalign is an investment. You wouldn’t buy a car and then never drive it, would you? How about driving it without changing the oil?

Even more care should be taken with your teeth. Contact Johnson Elite Orthodontics for a free Invisalign consultation, and find out if this orthodontic treatment plan is the right match for you or your child.