Dr Schüler holds the at home Impressions invisible aligners kit

Are You a Candidate for Impressions Invisible Aligners?

When getting started with Impressions, the first step is to visit one of our ImpressionsHubs for an evaluation performed by a board-certified dental specialist. During this appointment, they will decide if our proprietary aligner system is best for you to achieve the smile of your dreams.

Currently, ImpressionsHubs are situated in Western North Carolina, but the goal is to expand our network across the country.

Invisible aligners are taking the dental world by storm right now, and we get a lot of questions from individuals (like yourself) regarding their candidacy. Impressions may not be the right solution for everyone, so we’ve compiled a list of common questions and answers to give you an idea of whether or not you’re a candidate for our Impressions aligners.

What Are You Looking to Fix?

This is by far the most important indicator of candidacy for Impressions. What exactly are you looking to improve about your smile and how severe is your condition? Invisible aligners are great to fix a host of common issues一crowding, spacing, overbite and underbite一but there are limits to what they’re able to do: severe orthodontia is best left up to traditional correction systems.

If your issues are severe, you may be better suited to traditional braces, clear braces or the Invisalign system. The best way to find out is to come in and speak with one of our doctors during a complimentary consultation. If they find that you qualify for Impressions, you could get started with an 3D iTero digital intraoral scan before you leave the office that day!

Are Your Teeth Healthy?

Invisible aligners surround the teeth, slowly pushing them into proper placement. Due to the design of these aligners, it’s important that a patient’s teeth be in good dental shape. Wrapping a set of teeth in durable plastic for 22 hours a day can exacerbate existing dental issues.

Anyone interested in Impressions aligners must have visited their dentist within the last year and have any cavities filled ahead of time. Taking care of these steps in advance will make treatment that much easier and ensure your oral health is in top condition, which can further benefit the rest of your body.

What Is Your Age?

Candidacy for Impressions certainly depends on a person’s age. Invisible aligners benefit adults and older teenagers the most一their teeth and jaw have stopped growing, and they’ll be able to comply with the needs of treatment. As an added bonus, invisible aligners offer transparency, which is a much bigger area of focus for older patients. They want to be able to seek the treatment they’ve always wanted without putting their life on hold.

With Impressions, you get to see your smile change and don’t have to feel self-conscious while it’s doing so. Bulky metalware can make a young adult feel like a kid again, and rarely go over well in office settings. On the flip side, younger patients benefit from traditional braces because they don’t need to be removed at any time during treatment. While there are exceptions to every rule, generally candidacy is best for those patients that are nearing adulthood or already there.

Are You Dedicated to Fixing Your Smile?

This kind of question is important for anyone seeking orthodontic treatment一the investment is significant and work is certainly required一but it’s especially important for those interested in Impressions.

One of the key differences between invisible aligners and traditional methods of treatment is that aligners can be removed. When an Impressions patient eats or drinks anything other than water, their aligners have to be removed to keep them clean and sanitary.

Afterwards, the patient must brush and rinse their mouth thoroughly before replacing their aligners. It is also important to regularly clean aligners to keep them free of bacteria and prevent clouding. Though Impressions is certainly easier and more comfortable than most orthodontic options, this responsibility cannot be overlooked.

After the treatment period, which lasts between six to nine months on average, you will be responsible for wearing your retainer to maintain the new shape of your teeth. This is standard for all orthodontic correction options, but it’s important for a patient to understand what’s expected of them before beginning treatment. Invisible aligners are only as effective as you allow them to be; if you don’t wear them for the recommended 22 hours a day, they will not produce the best results. Younger patients with less discipline may be inclined to remove aligners because of some discomfort, and thus are not recommended to seek this style of treatment.

What Other Dental Work Have You Had?

Though previous orthodontic corrections and dental work do not exempt your candidacy for Impressions, it’s important that your doctor know ahead of time so that they can decide if aligners are the right fit. Many adults who previously received orthodontic treatment via traditional metal braces may have a permanent retainer on either the top or bottom rows of their teeth. If this is the case, the retainer will need to be removed before they can begin treatment with Impressions. The aligners can’t shift a permanent retainer, and it would hinder their ability to correct that row of teeth.

The same is true for implants or bridges. Implants are screwed into the jawbone, and thus will not move during treatment. Talk to your family doctor about the best course of action if you currently have permanent or semi-permanent pieces in your mouth, and please feel free to come in for a complimentary appointment to consult with our doctors as well.

Conclusion

While all the above questions should be considered before you make a decision about treatment, the most important one really is, are you ready to have the smile that you’ve always wanted? Impressions is an exciting option for those who are seeking mild to moderate orthodontic correction. Because of the teledentistry model we use, patients save time and money when they use Impressions. Just read what our good friend and patient Kaitlin Gonzalez had to say about her experience using Impressions.

There is a lot to love about invisible aligners, but they may not be the right style of treatment for every individual. Ask yourself the above questions or fill out this small questionnaire to find out if Impressions is right for you.