Clear Aligners for Kids
Invisalign First is exactly what it sounds like—orthodontic treatment that can be used before any other type of treatment is needed. This relatively new option is designed for children between the ages of 7 and 10 who would benefit from treatment before all of their adult teeth come in.
How Invisalign First Works
Invisalign First Works just like all of the other levels of Invisalign, just on a smaller, faster scale. Clear plastic aligners snapped onto the child’s teeth are worn at least 22 hours a day and gradually shift the teeth. Each aligner is slightly different than the last, creating continuous movement until the teeth are in their desired positions.
Normally each aligner, or set of aligners if the top and bottom teeth are both being treated, is worn for one to two weeks. Because children’s teeth are more mobile, aligners are replaced about every three days.
Does Invisalign First Make Sense?
The first question many parents have about this orthodontic treatment is if a child that young is responsible enough to wear the aligners as needed to be effective. Surprisingly, the answer is yes. Children at this age may seem contrary to their parents, but when it comes to listening to instructions and following rules from other adults, especially someone like an orthodontist, they are amazingly compliant.
They may also feel more grown up because their treatment is similar to what teens and adults use, making them act more responsibly.
There are many benefits to using Invisalign First instead of other early prevention methods.
- Children have no food restrictions since the aligners are removed when eating. This can be a serious advantage for parents of selective eaters.
- No special brushing or flossing is required. Simply soak the aligners or clean them with a little liquid handsoap, then brush and floss as usual.
- Teeth remain a uniform color. When using regular braces, the tooth surfaces under the brackets may be a different color than the rest of the tooth. This is not an issue with Invisalign.
- Child and adult patients alike often say Invisalign is more comfortable than wearing braces or a different type of appliance because there are no brackets, wires, or hard plastic.
Is Invisalign First Right for Your Child?
This question can only be answered after having your child’s teeth and mouth examined and consulting with an orthodontist. Some issues may still respond better to traditional Phase I treatments.
The other factor is your child. Will they take their treatment seriously enough to wear the aligners all day, every day? And are they responsible enough to not lose their aligners if they take them out at school to eat lunch or at a friend’s house to brush their teeth? Only you can answer these questions.
To learn more about this removable, comfortable treatment option, schedule a free exam for your child at one of our convenient locations throughout Charleston.