When Should I Start Seeing Invisalign Results?

Doctor Answers 23

How long to see Invisalign results?

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Hello Mandy,
It usually takes 2-3 months for most patients to notice results from clear aligners.  It usually takes a few months later for other people to notice results from clear aligners.  It really depends on your specific case.  A great way to know what to expect is to ask your dentist to show you an animated 3-D preview of your teeth movements.  He/she will show you exactly what changes to expect and when to expect them.  He/she may even be able to download this 3-D animation for you.  I often times do this for my patients that are anticipating changes that have not yet occurred.  Make sure you choose an excellent cosmetic dentist or an orthodontist that is experienced in Invisalign.

Invisalign tooth movement can be noticed soon

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Each one of my patients is different.  Many patients tell me after just wearing their first aligner for two weeks, they noticed their teeth shifting.  I would say 100% of my patients notice tooth movement after 2 months.

Your dentist can show you the computer animation called “clinchek” so you know what results to expect with each invisalign aligner.  Clinchek is a 3D animation program, it shows your teeth movements during the Invisalign treatment.

Good Luck with your treatment.

Peter Mann, DDS
Manhattan Dentist

Quickness of results seen is dependent on case complexity and the amount of crowding.

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First of all, Invisalign is a wonderful system. However, it works in an entirely different manner than traditional braces does. It "pushes" teeth. Akin to squeezing a watermelon seed out from between your index finger and thumb. As such, tooth movement with Invisalign has to be deliberate and staged precisely. This means that not all teeth are moving at the same speed or velocity. Some teeth may not be moving at all. Typically, the most difficult tooth to move (usually the most crooked or rotated tooth) is going to be staged to move the slowest. Therefore, it may take longer with invisalign to see correction in certain problem areas.

You will usually see quicker initial results with braces because all teeth are moving in a relatively unprecise random manner. Even teeth that are straight, initially, sometimes are moved out of alignment with braces by the more crooked teeth only to be moved back to their or original position later on in treatment. In orthodontic circles, this inefficient mode of treatment is called "round tripping". This is not negligent orthodontics...it is just the way teeth respond to braces and wires.

Because of this inherent inefficiency in traditional braces, Invisalign treatment usually ends up taking less time to complete. I know this doesn't make sense but our average invisalign case takes approximately 12 months plus or minus to complete. Full braces cases average 18 to 24 months.

Please note that there are limitations inherent in any treatment option. It is very important for patients to ask questions so that their treament goals are met.

Matt T. Walton, DMD
Suwanee Orthodontist

You can watch your teeth move on the computer.

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Ask your dentist if you can see the ClinCheck by Invisalign. It shows a computerized 3D image of your teeth moving aligner by aligner. Then you will know what to expect by each aligner number. You can see where you started and what you are supposed to look like when you are finished. Your smile can be rotated and viewed from any angle.

Hope that helps!

Dr Schiavone

Daniel W. Schiavone, DDS
Rochester Dentist

Invisalign Results

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The invisalign program is set to move teeth at 0.25mm increments.  So, each tray that you use will shift teeth a maximum of 0.25mm.  The Clin-check or virtual movie of these tooth movements will show this with each successive aligner.  Most of the time, patients will visibily notice changes in there own mouth within 3 to 4 months.  However, certain cases may show sooner.  For example, I did a case where a lower tooth needed to be taken out to straighten the teeth to help relieve the crowding.  The patient told me it was fun noticing the gap closing with each succesive aligner and she noticed changes within the frist couple of aligners that she wore.


Seeing vs. Feeling

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Most of my patients tell me that they can feel a change very early on in their treatment.  Usually this is between one and two months.  They feel floss passes through their teeth more easily and generally find that their gums feel "better". ... less bleeding etc.

As far as actually seeing a result, most commonly people tell me that they see a change around aligner 7 or 8.  This would be somewhere between 31/2 to 4 months.

After that it gets to be fun and exciting.

Martin Frankel, DDS
Toronto Dentist

When Should I Start Seeing Invisalign Results?

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Just a few weeks after your treatment begins, you should be able to detect visible results. Though the results will appear minimal at first, you can expect to observe continuous progress with each tray change. Most patients can report noticeable changes after approximately 4-6 weeks.

Zach Casagrande, DDS, MS, PC
Ashburn Orthodontist

Every case is different ask to see your clincheck staging video

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Some of my cases have wonderful obvious results after just 4 trays while others may take up to half a year to just start seeing results.   It all depends on what type of tooth movement is needed and where in the mouth this movement needs to occur during the initial stages.  
Ask you Dentist to email over or show you at the next visit your Clincheck staging video,  This helps to see where you started.  Where you are now and what to expect in the future.

Results can happen slowly or quicklly

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The answer depends on how you started. My patients who have spacing, notice that each day the spaces get smaller, it usually takes about 2 months to see noticeable results. My patients who start with lots of crowdinng notice after a few weeks that their teeth don't feel so tight.

The other issue is that if you look at your teeth everyday you won't notice the small changes. 

Another way to determine your future results is to look at your first aligner vs another aligner later in treatment. If you hold them next to each other you should be able to see the difference in tooth positions.

Sylvan Fain, DDS
Miami Dentist

It depends on what is being done

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If there is a lot of crowding you may not see the results right away. Space has to be made before crowded teeth can start moving with Invisalign. The space can be created by smoothing some of the enamel between the teeth ( no damage to the enamel), extracting teeth, or expansion.

If spaces have to be closed you will see results immediately.

Bottom line is that you can see the entire process on your computer.

Gilbert H. Snow, DDS
Encino Orthodontist

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.