Do You Need Invisalign Attachments?

Dentist Blog

If you are interested in getting Invisalign but have a more complex case, your dentist might recommend Invisalign with attachments. Invisalign attachments are made from clear resins and are directly bonded to the teeth. Take a look at why these attachments may be needed and what you can expect during treatment. 

What Is Their Purpose?

Sometimes a tooth is rotated too much or shaped in such a way that the aligner cannot apply the right amount of pressure to move it. So, the main purpose of Invisalign attachments is to help the aligners grip teeth better to correct these severe malocclusions. In the past, some people may have had to get metal brackets and wires to make corrections, but resin attachments now allow more patients to pursue Invisalign trays instead.

Are They the Same as Invisalign Buttons?

Invisalign attachments are sometimes confused with Invisalign buttons. Invisalign buttons are secured to the aligners' exteriors rather than to teeth, and their main purpose is to hold rubber bands. Rubber bands help to align the bite of the upper and lower jaws. Attachments on the other hand, are meant to apply additional forces to teeth that are severely rotated. One study found that both Invisalign propriety attachments and generic attachments were effective at correcting rotations of premolars and canines as well as extruded incisors. While buttons may only be used for one portion of the orthodontic treatment, attachments are typically used for the entirety of the treatment.   

What Are the Pros and Cons of Attachments?

Attachments are small and clear, so you won't have to worry about them being noticeable when you are wearing the aligners on top of them. Again, the main advantage of the attachments is that they allow more patients to qualify for Invisalign. The main downside of attachments is that you do need to be sure to brush and floss around them well so that they don't trap food particles. Thankfully, you can still take off your aligners when wearing attachments, so cleaning these structures isn't as difficult as cleaning teeth with metal wires and brackets.

How Are They Placed and Removed?

Before attachments are placed, your dentist will clean your teeth and then apply a gel that roughens the surface of the tooth. This rough surface helps the attachments adhere better to the enamel. Your dentist will then place a template aligner on your teeth. This template has small openings where the resin material can be loaded. Once the resin is placed, your dentist will use a curing light to harden the material. The template aligner is removed, and you'll be fitted with an actual aligner that fits snugly over the attachments.

When you no longer need to wear attachments, they are easily removed with dental pliers. Your dentist then uses a polishing bur and water jet to clean up any residue. Attachment placements and attachment removals are both painless, quick procedures.

To learn more about Invisalign and Invisalign attachments, reach out to a dentist today.


31 August 2022