If you’re considering Invisalign clear aligners to transform your smile, likely one question you have is:
Are the results from Invisalign treatment permanent or will my teeth shift again post-treatment?
This concern over potential teeth relapse is understandable. After investing significant time and money into orthodontics as an adult, you want assurance your new smile will last.
Read below as Lansdowne Family Dental covers:
- Factors impacting the longevity of Invisalign treatment
- Steps taken during Invisalign to prevent relapse
- Why retention is critical after completing treatment
- What permanent retention options are available
- Estimates for how long Invisalign results realistically last
- Options if some regression eventually does occur
Understanding Invisalign retention protocols and continuation of care post-treatment is important for maintaining your flawless new smile for life.
Variables Impacting the Permanency of Invisalign Treatment
Several variables influence the stability of Invisalign transformation results, including:
- Initial teeth positioning – crowded vs. mildly misaligned
- The extensiveness of the required movement
- Bone density and tissue elasticity
- General oral health habits
- Commitment to wearing retainers exactly as directed
Since Invisalign moves teeth more gently, the new position tends to stabilize well over time provided you closely follow post-treatment guidelines.
Proactive Steps Taken During Invisalign for Permanent Results
To set you up for lifelong alignment success, Lansdowne Family Dental takes proactive measures including:
- Over-correction – Slightly position teeth knowing minor regression may occur
- Maintaining space – Interproximal reduction and spacing help avoid crowding relapse
- Staged movement – Teeth shifted progressively allowing bone/tissue to stabilize
- Attachment use – Bumps on teeth anchor aligners more securely for precise movements
- Refinement stages – Extra scanning and aligners further tune positioning results
You also must properly wear each aligner set for the prescribed duration so teeth are shifted incrementally not abruptly.
Why Retainer Wear is Non-Negotiable After Invisalign Therapy
While Invisalign trays may straighten your teeth expertly, they cannot override your natural genetic and behavioral tendencies 100%.
Just as they shifted out of place once, the potential exists for teeth to relapse if not retained. This is why Lansdowne Family Dental stresses imperative, long-term retainer use post-treatment.
Think of retainers like a seatbelt for your newly aligned teeth!
Types of Retainers Used Post Invisalign
Lansdowne Family Dental offers patients two main orthodontic retainer options:
- Clear plastic trays are worn at night
- Initially worn full-time (22 hrs/day) for about 6 months
- Transition to nighttime only wear long-term
Benefits: Removable, allows teeth access for brushing/flossing
Bonded permanent retainers
- Thin wire glued behind front 6 teeth
- Left in place semi-permanently for years
- Nearly invisible and doesn’t impact chewing/speech
Benefits: Holds front teeth firmly so they cannot shift
Some patients use a combination for maximum security against regression. Our doctors help determine the best protocol for you based on tooth anatomy, case complexity, and wear diligence.
How Long Do Properly Retained Invisalign Results Last?
With prescribed retainer use for the first year and then nightly wear for years after, well-retained Invisalign results can last permanently in most patients!
However, without long-term retention, you risk teeth shifting back toward their original positions.
Be prepared to wear retainers regularly for at least 5 years then periodically thereafter. But this limited effort is worthwhile to protect your investment!
What Happens if Some Regression Still Occurs Over Time?
Even if you wear retainers diligently long-term, some natural minor tooth movement may still occur eventually, most commonly with:
- Slight front tooth crowding
- Minor rotation of canines or premolars
- Small spacing near extraction sites
But with routine dental exams, Lansdowne Family Dental will catch minor regression in the early stages. From there we can:
- Enhance your existing retainer
- Order new aligner touch-ups
- Perform selective IPR or bonding
- Consider a permanent fixed retainer
So if you notice subtle alignment changes years later, contact us right away for minor readjustment. Significant relapse risk still remains highly preventable through retention and follow-up care.
To learn more about perfecting your smile for good with Invisalign, call our office today to schedule an initial orthodontic consultation.