You did it! After 12 to 24 months of trays, appointments, and dedication, you’ve completed your Invisalign journey resulting in a stunningly straightened new smile. But the question remains – what happens next after you achieve your ideal tooth alignment?
Below we’ll discuss the typical next steps following the last stages of Invisalign to protect your investment in a bright, healthy smile for the long run.
Last Steps for Active Invisalign Treatment
Before exploring post-treatment, let’s quickly recap what generally occurs leading up to your last Invisalign tray:
- Final Progress Scan: A new impressions or intraoral scanner captures your teeth current corrected positions after using your second-to-last aligner tray set.
- Retention Aligners Fabricated: Based on the final scan, custom Vivera retention aligners are made to lock in your teeth straightened positions.
- Use Last Aligner Trays: You’ll wear your very last set of Invisalign trays until the new retention aligners arrive at our office for you. This takes around 3-4 weeks.
Once your retention trays are ready, that officially marks the completion of your Invisalign journey!
Now let’s look at what the retention stage entails next…
Invisalign Retention Protocol
The retention phase with Vivera aligners is a mandatory part of the Invisalign treatment process intended to:
- Allow minor settling of teeth into optimal alignment
- Enable muscles/bones to stabilize around corrected positions
- Prevent minor tooth shifts inevitably trying to relapse
Here are the standard recommendations for wearing Vivera retainers:
- Full-time wear (20-22 hrs/day) for the first 6 months
- Part-time wear (night only) for at least the next 6 months
- Possible lifelong nightly wear depending on case factors
Although retaining results requires diligence too, the peace of mind of keeping your teeth properly aligned makes it worthwhile!
Now let’s explore key steps beyond the retention stage to perpetuate your smile investment long-term.
Routine follow-up exams help ensure your teeth remain healthy and ideally aligned permanently:
- 3-Month Checkup: Monitoring early stability closure catches minor regressions promptly so new trays swiftly put teeth back perfectly.
- 6-Month & Yearly Reviews: Tracking mid-range and ongoing retention success reassures you while catching delayed issues like wisdom teeth causing second relapses.
Booking check-ins throughout the first year and beyond lets our orthodontic specialists confirm your retainers keep doing their job so you feel smiley and confident for decades to come!
Protect Your Investment with Retainers
To receive maximum reward for your efforts completing Invisalign, protecting your investment means wearing retainers consistently as directed, replacing worn ones promptly, and attending all follow-up appointments to safeguard straightened teeth lifelong.
Replacing retainers requires getting new digital scans to replicate how teeth settled after removing aligners. From these updated images, fresh retainers get meticulously fabricated to keep this settled state intact.
The small price of replacement retainers prevents losing the much bigger investment you made in achieving properly aligned teeth for a lifetime!
What If More Adjustments Become Necessary?
Despite faithful retainer use, some cases benefit from extra alignment refinements even after supposedly finishing treatment.
If our orthodontists notice tooth movement regressing at follow-ups, additional Invisalign aligner stages may be prescribed to correct positions and detail final adjustments for optimized stability.
Some common reasons for refinement needs include:
- Erupting wisdom teeth crowding front teeth
- Natural maturing jaw growth rotating molars
- Tongue thrust habits resurfacing
- Undetected tooth-grinding habits
Thankfully, Invisalign’s digital treatment platform allows seamless additional aligner ordering to swiftly perform revision stages when deemed necessary by our clinicians.
So try not to worry – further streamlined adjustments keep your smile looking fabulous even if surprising changes emerge later on down the road!
Feel Confident In Your Revitalized Smile
Completing your main Invisalign treatment is an exciting milestone putting a dazzling new smile finally within reach. But diligently wearing your retainers afterward and scheduling regular checkups ensures your teeth function properly and beautifully for life after orthodontics.
Lansdowne Family Dental helps make the transition smooth from Invisalign to retention so you feel smile assured now and long into the future. Contact our professionals today with any post-treatment questions!