Invisalign is one of the biggest advancements in dental care in recent years. If you aren’t already familiar with the treatment, it is an alternative to traditional orthodontics.
Instead of using fixed brackets and wires made from metal or porcelain, Invisalign uses a series of clear plastic aligners. These are very similar to the retainer you might wear at the end of orthodontic treatment.
The aligners apply gentle pressure to the teeth at strategic points to gradually move them into the optimum position. The treatment plan is designed by a computer using digital scans of the teeth. The ideal path for each tooth is mapped, and then the aligners are laser cut to fit your teeth and gums.
Orthodontic treatment is typically associated with teenagers, which leads many people to ask: what is the ideal age for Invisalign? And could I be too old/young for orthodontics? In this article, we will explore the factors that make a candidate suitable for Invisalign treatment. And you’ll be interested to learn that your age rarely matters.
What is the ideal age for Invisalign?
Provided you have all of your adult teeth, there is no lower age limit for Invisalign. Provided your teeth are healthy enough to withstand the forces of the treatment, there is no upper age limit for Invisalign.
The perfect age for Invisalign is whenever you decide that you would like to straighten your teeth. This could be in your 20s, 30s, 40s or even your 60s. You don’t have to have had orthodontic treatment as a child to be eligible for Invisalign as an adult.
You simply need to have an orthodontic issue that can be addressed with Invisalign treatment. This could include issues such as:
Underbite, overbite or crossbite
What is the youngest age for Invisalign?
Your dentist will start to monitor your child’s teeth as their adult teeth emerge. Orthodontic treatment may be used at this age to ensure the teeth emerge correctly. Alternatively, they may wait for all of the teeth to emerge before deciding if treatment is necessary. Children usually have all of their adult teeth by the age of 12, so this is when you can start to think about orthodontic treatment.
NHS waiting lists for children’s orthodontics are at an all-time high, so you may have a long wait. If you choose NHS orthodontics, you won’t be given the option to have Invisalign treatment. If you’d like to take control over the treatment plan and start at a time convenient for your family, you can choose private orthodontics, which will give you access to Invisalign treatment.
What is the oldest age for Invisalign?
There is no upper age limit for Invisalign, however, there are some factors to consider. Your teeth need to be strong and healthy enough to manage the treatment. If you have any signs of gum disease, this should be addressed before you start treatment to ensure your mouth is as healthy as possible.
If you have multiple missing teeth, orthodontic treatment might be more difficult, particularly if you have a bridge, denture or dental implant. Invisalign cannot be used with these restorations, so you will need to consult with your dentist to determine the best course of action for your situation.
Is orthodontic treatment more difficult as you get older?
Every case is unique, and some people will have more difficulty with treatment than others. As you get older, the jaw bone becomes more dense, which can make it more difficult to move the teeth. Children respond quickly to orthodontic treatment as the bone density is not as high as that of an adult.
Invisalign might not be suitable for everyone, but you won’t know until you book a consultation with an orthodontist. During this appointment, they will scan your teeth and jaw and take X-rays to determine if you could be a good candidate for treatment.
If you aren’t a good candidate for Invisalign, your dentist can recommend alternative treatments to consider. This could include traditional fixed braces, lingual braces, or veneers to give the illusion of a perfect smile without having to wait to complete treatment.