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Clear Aligners: An Alternative to Braces

Young girl smiling while holding Invisalign clear aligner

How do Clear Aligners work?

The Clear Aligner system uses a series of clear, custom-made removable aligners that are worn over the teeth to gradually move them to their ideal positions. The aligners are made of safe, medical-grade, biocompatible plastic. 


The success of the aligners is aided by attachments, small tooth-coloured dots of dental composite (white filling material) that are placed at specific locations on specific teeth.


The size, shape and orientation of an attachment is dictated by the purpose it serves (such as tooth rotation, translation, intrusion or extrusion). These added bumps provide anchor points that help to direct the forces of the aligner more effectively to the tooth. 


The number of attachments, aligners and overall treatment is different for each patient. Once the desired result is achieved, the attachments will be removed and retainers will be made to ensure the new positions of the teeth are maintained.

What to Expect


Using a wand-like instrument, a Dental Assistant will scan over the teeth transmitting a 3D digital model of your mouth to a touchscreen monitor.  Using special Software, the Orthodontist will manipulate your digital models to create a simulation of desired tooth movements.  A series of custom-made clear aligners are then manufactured in a lab and sent to the practice to be fitted.  Turnaround time from scan to fitting is approximately six weeks. 

At the 60-minute fitting, the hygienist will polish the teeth before placing the prescribed attachments and fitting your first set of aligners.  You will be given an additional set of aligners and advised how often to change them over (usually every 2 weeks).  Your orthodontist will want to see you every 8 weeks for a 15-minute appointment to monitor your progress. 

Most patients will require a mid-course scan so that additional aligners can be made to meet treatment objectives. We refer to this process as ‘Next Stage’ and your Orthodontist will advise if and when it will be necessary.


At the end of treatment, the hygienist will remove your final aligners and attachments and fit custom retainers to ensure your teeth don’t move or shift back.  You will be required to wear retainers for the rest of your life.  Read more about retainers under the ‘Services’ tab above or by clicking the quick link below. 

Cleaning & Eating

Remove your aligners to eat and drink (unless cold water) and brush your teeth before reinserting. If you are unable to brush at the time, simply rinse your mouth and the aligners with cool water and complete a thorough clean at your earliest convenience. You will receive a case when you commence treatment. 
To clean the aligners, rinse thoroughly with cool water and shake off the excess water. You can also use a soft bristle toothbrush and water only. DO NOT rinse with hot water as this can distort the shape of the aligner. DO NOT soak them in mouthwash or scrub with toothpaste.  These products can damage the surface of the aligner causing it to become dull and more visible.  

  • Cash
    You are welcome to settle your account using cash at our practice. Please note: no cash is left on premises overnight.
  • Cheque
    You are welcome to settle your account with Cheque at this practice. Please discuss this payment option with our reception team to find out more information.
  • Interest Free Ortho
    Interest Free allows you to get orthodontic treatment today and pay it off over time. Your payments will be made in instalments meaning it won't hit your bank balance straight away. Interest Free finance gives you and your family flexibility and peace of mind. Disclaimer: Interest free payment plans only avaliable for some treatments. Ask the team for more information.
  • Direct Deposit
    You are welcome to settle your account with Direct Deposit at this practice. Please discuss this payment option with our reception team to find out more information.

Frequently Asked Questions

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