in Columbia, SC

Dental issues can be a major cause of concern for many individuals, affecting their self-confidence and overall well-being. One common issue is misaligned teeth, which can impact not only their oral health but also their appearance. 

In the past, traditional braces were the only option for correcting misaligned teeth. However, with technological advancements, there is now a more discreet and convenient solution – Invisalign.

What Is Invisalign and How Does It Work?

Invisalign is an orthodontic treatment using clear aligners to gradually shift teeth into their desired position. These custom-made aligners are made from virtually invisible plastic, making them a popular choice for those looking to straighten their teeth without metals and brackets in their mouth. 

The process starts with a consultation with an Invisalign provider, who will assess your oral health and determine if you are a suitable candidate for treatment. If approved, your orthodontist will take digital impressions of your teeth to create a 3D image that will be used to design the aligners.

Once the aligners are ready, the provider will give you a series of aligners to wear for about one or two weeks each, gradually moving your teeth into the desired position. The number of aligners required will vary depending on the severity of misalignment and treatment goals.

Benefits of Invisalign

Invisalign offers several benefits over traditional braces, making it an attractive option for many individuals, including:


As mentioned, Invisalign aligners are virtually invisible, making them a popular choice for adults and teenagers who may feel self-conscious about wearing traditional braces.


Unlike braces that are fixed onto teeth, Invisalign aligners can be removed when eating, brushing or flossing. This means no food restrictions or special oral hygiene routines


The aligners are custom-made to fit your teeth, and the smooth plastic material ensures a comfortable experience without any irritation to your cheeks or gums

Shorter Treatment Time

In some cases, Invisalign treatment may take less time compared to traditional braces, with an average treatment time of 12-18 months.

Invisalign Vs. Braces

Here’s a brief comparison between Invisalign and traditional braces:


Both Invisalign and braces are effective in correcting misaligned teeth. However, Invisalign may not be suitable for more complex cases that require extensive orthodontic treatment.


Braces can be easily noticeable, whereas Invisalign aligners are virtually invisible.


With traditional braces, brackets and wires may cause discomfort and irritation, while Invisalign aligners are smooth and comfortable.


In general, Invisalign treatment may cost slightly more compared to traditional braces. However, the cost may vary depending on your individual case and treatment plan.

Convenience and Maintenance

Invisalign aligners are removable, making it easy to maintain oral hygiene and enjoy your favorite foods without any restrictions. Braces require special care and may limit food choices.

What Happens After Your Invisalign Treatment?

After you complete your Invisalign treatment, the next steps are essential to maintain the alignment of your teeth. Here’s what you can expect:

  • Removal of Aligners. Removing aligners from Invisalign after treatment is usually painless and can be completed in under 20 minutes.
  • Wearing Retainers. Once your aligners are removed, you’ll need to wear retainers. These can be fixed or removable. A fixed retainer is a thin, metal wire glued to the back of your teeth. This permanent solution takes away the risk of you losing your retainer. However, some patients might prefer a removable retainer that they can take off when eating or brushing. The retainers are crucial to prevent your teeth from returning to their original positions. You are usually asked to wear your retainers for at least 22 hours a day or as your orthodontist recommends.
  • Period of Adjustment. It usually takes around 12 months after your last Invisalign trays for the jawbone to fully deposit around the aligned teeth, making them stable.
  • Regular Check-Ups. Regular visits to your orthodontist are required to ensure that everything is going as planned and your teeth are maintaining their new positions.

Remember, every patient’s journey is different, and these steps may vary depending on individual needs and circumstances. Always follow your orthodontist’s advice for the best results.

Learn How Washington Orthodontics Can Help You Achieve a Healthy, Straight Smile With Invisalign

At Washington Orthodontics, we understand the importance of a confident smile. Our father-son team of experienced orthodontists is dedicated to providing quality Invisalign treatment in Columbia, SC. We aim to help patients achieve their dream smiles through quality Invisalign treatment.

Contact us today to schedule your consultation!