Roughly four million Americans wear braces, and about one-quarter of these are adults. Invisalign provides an alternative to traditional metal braces. These clear aligners are invisible to the eye, making them especially attractive solutions for those who are conscious about appearances. We find that many teens, adults and seniors have questions about Invisalign, including about the bumps, buttons, bands and other attachments that are sometimes required.
Attachments are small sticky dots about the same shade as the color of teeth. These are placed at certain points on the teeth to provide a firmer grip for the aligner and prevent it from slipping off. The attachments serve as the anchor points that are required for applying the force of the aligner.
Similarly, there are also buttons. These are miniature brackets that also act as anchors so the dentist can add rubber bands at regular intervals of the treatment. The rubber bands are small elastics that provide additional force to move the teeth and align them in their proper position in the jaw. There are also bumps that serve a similar purpose. Bumps are small dabs placed near the center of the teeth and apply extra rotational force. This helps straighten teeth twisted at an angle.
Aligners often require additional auxiliaries, such as attachments, buttons, bumps, and rubber bands to help straighten the teeth. Depending on the extent of teeth misalignment, the aligner on its own may not provide the necessary pressure to push the teeth back in position. An examination from an orthodontist will determine whether your aligner requires these additional add-ons.
Invisalign cost varies depending on the complexity of your specific needs. Normally, the cost of attachments and other additions, such as bands and buttons, is higher than if you only need the aligner itself. Only your orthodontist can determine the final cost after an evaluation has been performed.
The aligner and attachments do not cause major pain or discomfort. The attachments, though, may feel slightly awkward and out of place at first. Aligners and attachments are not designed to be a perfect and snug fit. They’re supposed to feel a bit strange, especially at the point of the misaligned teeth. The aligner is shaped to how your teeth are supposed to appear once they’re straightened out, and not how your teeth are currently positioned.
Your orthodontist may remove them if a specific treatment is required. However, you should not make any attempts to remove the attachment at home. DIY removal may cause damage to the underlying tooth enamel the attachment is anchored to.
Yes, you can eat with attachments on. Just be aware that food at times may get caught in and around the attachments. We recommend brushing after eating and before you put the aligner back on.
Contact LI Implant and Cosmetic Dentistry for a consultation with one of our Long Island Invisalign Dentists. An initial examination will determine whether you require an aligner with an additional attachment and other add-ons.
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