Tag Archives: Lafayette LA Invisalign

Did the Oral Surgeon Lie to Me?

When I turned 18 my wisdom teeth began to bother me. We checked them and my dentist said, they don’t have to be removed, but if I wanted to remove them she’d give me a referral to an oral surgeon. We decided to just see what he had to say. He told me I really needed to removed them, otherwise, I’d need braces from crowding. If I had them removed, I’d not have to face that. I’m almost 40 now and suddenly my teeth are crowding. Did he lie to me or is something else going on? What can fix them at this point? I’m a little old for a mouth full of metal. Heck, I didn’t want that when I was young.

Tabitha L.

Dear Tabitha,

A woman placing in her Invisalign aligners

I don’t think the oral surgeon intentionally lied to you, though, admittedly I don’t know who he is or anything about his practice habits. He was, as we’re giving him the benefit of the doubt, overly generous of the benefits of removing your wisdom teeth. While it did prevent your wisdom teeth from causing crowding, it can’t stop other causes of crowding.

Reasons Teeth Can Crowd

There are numerous reasons for crowding aside from wisdom teeth which don’t fit. Here are just a few which could pertain to your situation:

  • Grinding

Most people who grind their teeth don’t even realize they’re doing it. Generally, it’s the dentist who first recognizes the signs of teeth wearing down due to the grinding. Believe it or not, that back and forth pressure can shift your teeth. A simple mouthguard can protect your teeth in these situations.

  • Sucking

I’m assuming you’re well past the pacifier and thumb sucking stage, but even some adults have an oral fixation. You see it when they always seem to need something in their mouth, pens and other things.

  • Losing a Tooth

If you lose a tooth and don’t get it replaced, your teeth will shift to close in the gap. This shifting can cause problems for the remaining teeth. At the very least, things will start to look off. This is one of the reasons it’s quite important to replace a missing tooth with something like dental implants.

  • Shoddy Dental Work

There are unskilled dentists out there. Poorly shaped crowns, bridges, and other work may change the bite or begin to push teeth out of alignment. Often the patient ends up with a serious case of TMJ Disorder.

  • Tooth Trauma

When there is an injury to your teeth it can affect them in a variety of ways, including shifting.

  • Tumors

Don’t panic about this if you get regular checkups with x-rays. Your dentist would have noticed this. But, if you have sudden huge changes in your bite, it’s worth getting another x-ray. It’s rare, but tumors can significantly change your jaw, teeth, and bite.

Repairing a Bite without Braces

There is a simple solution in your case. If it’s just a matter of your teeth shifting and crowding Invisalign is a perfect solution. This uses clear aligners to straighten your teeth. No one will know you’re wearing them, even at a conversational distance.

Talk to your dentist. Let he or she know what’s going on. They’ll help you get the smile you’ve always loved back.

This blog is brought to you by Dr. Mike Malone.

Can Adults Do the Invisalign Teen?

I’ve been told the Invisalign Teen program has extra aligners in case you lose them.  I tend to lose things a lot and wondered if an adult can do that program?

Margo D. – New Jersey


I’m sure your dentist would work with you on that.  However, they’re on your teeth for everything except eating. If you just remember to put them right back on, you’re not likely to have any trouble.

Here’s how it works:

Your dentist gives you a pair of Invisalign aligners. You wear them for two weeks all the time, except when you’re eating. When you finish eating, you brush your teeth ( and don’t forget about flossing once a day), then put the aligners back in.  At the end of two weeks, your dentist will give you a new set of aligners.

It’s really quite simple.  If you’re still worried about losing them, they yes, speak to your dentist about the extra aligner option.

This blog is brought to you by Louisiana Cosmetic Dentist Dr. Mike Malone.

How often must I visit the dentist with invisalign?

If I want to get invisalign, will I have to go to the dentist every two weeks? I heard that is how often you have to have the aligners changed.

Melissa S. – Portland, OR


You don’t have to go in to the office to switch your aligners.  Even though your dentist will have you switch them out every two weeks, he gives you enough Invisalign to wear for six weeks.  You just trade out your aligners in between times.  They’re easy to get in and out, so there is no special procedure or training necessary.

Some things to be aware of–

1. Don’t try to change them out sooner than every two weeks.  That will mess up your teeth.  Although you’ll find that your teeth move into their new position quicker than that, your bone needs time to support your tooth root in its new position.

2. Be sure to leave your aligners in for the prescribed amount every day.  Of course, you get to take them out and eat.  It is recommended that you brush your teeth after each meal as well.

This blog is brought to you by Louisiana Cosmetic Dentist Dr. Mike Malone.

Straighten and Whiten your teeth at the same time

I’ve been saving money to make my teeth look better. I’ve got enough to straighten my teeth and whiten them.  Would it better to do the braces first or to whiten them first?

Nerry P. – Georgia


If you’re a candidate for Invisalign, you could do both at the same time.  You’ll find most patients prefer invisalign over traditional braces anyway. They’re more comfortable, more attractive, and finish much sooner.

You may click here to learn more about Invisalign.  If you’re dentist agrees, it is possible to use the invisalign aligners as whitening trays.  This way you can spend some of your time wearing the aligners with the whitening gel inside. In all likelihood, you’ll have briliant, white teeth before you’re even done straightening them, allowing you to witen your teeth and straighten them simultaneously.

This blog is brought to you by Louisiana Cosmetic Dentist Dr. Mike Malone.

Can I drink coffee with Invisalign?

I want to get invisalign, but I’m an avid coffee drinker. Will I have to give it up during treatment?

Jane F. – New Mexico


You can drink coffee during your treatment, but not while your invisalign aligners are in your mouth. There are a couple of reasons for this:

1. The heat of the coffee extremely likely to warp your aligners. This will damage your treatment plan.

2. The coffee will pool in the aligner. With the acidic (and sometimes sugary) nature of the beverage, that will cause the disintegration of your aligners.

That doesn’t mean that you can’t partake of coffee at all. In fact, you take your aligners out with every meal. That is three times a day right there that you can drink a cup of coffee.

Plus, Invisalign works much faster than traditional braces, so you’ll be back to drinking as many cups of coffee as you ‘d like in no time.

This blog is brought to you by Lafayette, LA Cosmetic Dentist Dr. Mike Malone.

Are my teeth the cause of my dating problems?

My husband left a few years ago and I’m finally ready to start dating. The only problem is, I’ve got no takers. Do you think my tooth gap could be turning off potential dates?

Stephanie L. – Minnesotta


I couldn’t give you a guarantee that your tooth gap is the source behind your dating woes, however, our smile is one of the first things people notice about us, so it is a possibility.

If that is the case, you have a few options. If the gap isn’t too big, you could close it up with dental bonding or porcelain veneers. However, if it is something you’d like to have permanently repaired, then I suggest you look into Invisalign.

This will allow you to straighten your teeth, without anyone even noticing. They have no metal wires or brackets. They really are invisible.

Give it a try and good luck with the dating!

This blog is brought to you by Lafayette, LA Dentist Dr. Mike Malone.

I damaged my aligner-what do I do?

I drank a bunch of hot tea when I was with friends.  Now my aligner is warped. What do I do?

Rhonda W. – Montana


I would go see your dentist and let him look at your aligner. Worse case scenario is he makes you a new one, but go in as soon as possible or it will throw off your treatment plan.

Using Invisalign doesn’t mean you cannot drink tea. Just don’t do it while you have on your aligners. You’ve already learned that the heat can warp them.  What you may not know is that it can seriously damage your tooth enamel. It is likely that the tea will pool in your aligner.  The sugar and other acids in the tea will eat away at your enamel.

This blog is brought to you by Louisiana Cosmetic Dentist Dr. Mike Malone.

Did my dentist cheat me with my Invisalign?

I have reason to suspect my dentist gave me a knock off instead of the real deal on my invisalign treatments. Is there some way to be certain of their authenticity? Also, are they supposed to be cleaned a certain way? If I do it differently will it matter?

Sven B. – Pennsylvania


Let me take these questions in order.

  1. First, I am curious what has made you suspicious.  To answer your question, yes, there is a way to tell if you’ve got  the actual brand.   In fact, Invisalign makes it super easy to tell.   On the biting surface of the tray and you will see their trademarked name. There will also be a set of numbers and letters that indicate your patient ID number, designations for your upper or lower arch ( marked as U and L),  as well as other information.  These are plainly visible.
  2. You should have been provided with an Invisalign cleaning kit. If for some reason you  weren’t, I would call your dental office and request one. If they don’t have them, don’t despair, there are ways to clean them without it.  You can use regular toothpaste. I wouldn’t use anything abrasive or it could create tiny scratches on your aligners. That may lead to staining. You could also simply brush them with water and rinse them thoroughly.  However, your dentist really should supply you with the cleaning kit.
  3. As to whether i would bad to clean them with something else, that answer really depends on what else you’re referring to.  Gentle toothpaste  and water are obviously OK, but I would use anything corrosive like bleach, etc.

This blog is brought to you by Louisiana Cosmetic Dentist Dr. Mike Malone.

Wine and Invisalign

I am planning on getting Invisalign. I know you can’t eat while the aligners are in and you just take them out for meals. I wondered if that meant I have to take them out whenever I drank too? I drink about five glasses of wine a day, plus some sodas. If I have to take them out everytime I drink, I won’t have them in much.

Karen D. -Maumelle, AR


Unfortunately, It would not be a good idea to drink those beverages while wearing your Invisalign aligners. That doesn’t mean you can’t drink the whole time of your treatment. I would just limit them to when you’re eating your meals.

There is a danger in drinking such highly acidic drinks while having your aligners in. They are likely to get caught between the aligners and your teeth. Then they would sit there eating away at the enamel on your teeth.

It might be hard getting used to limiting how much you drink. There have been similar patients who’ve had to do so. They mentioned the one benefit was losing some weight.

However, don’t despair. Invisalign treatments work in half the time of traditional braces, sometimes even faster. So, the limiting when you drink won’t last very long.

This blog is brought to you by Lafayette Cosmetic Dentist Dr. Mike Malone.

Fixing protruded teeth

I have protruded teeth. I am wanting a cosmetic option to fix it, but don’t want braces. What are my best options?

Alina M. – Montreal


Both the options I am about to share with you will repair protruded teeth. However, neither will work if your teeth are extremely protruded. My most important advice is to make sure you go to an expert cosmetic dentist. We’ll talk more about this in a minute. I’ll give you the options first.

Your first option is Invisalign. These are different than braces, which I can understand you not wanting.  They will repair your teeth, straightening them like braces, but there are no uncomfortable wires and brackets, plus they are no visible to other people, even at at conversational distance. No one will even know you are wearing them. If you’re open to that, then Invisalign would be one of your options. A good one too, because your teeth will be straight.

A second option is to get porcelain veneers. These will not actually straighten your teeth, but they will make them appear straight. Even though these don’t actually straighten your teeth, they do have a different kind of advantage. These can also change the shape and color of your teeth.  So, if there is more than just straightening your teeth you had in mind, these may be a better option.

That being said, if you ever get cosmetic work done of any kind, it is extraordinarily important that you use a highly skilled cosmetic dentist. Cosmetic dentistry is not a recognized specialty. Therefore, any general dentist can call themselves a cosmetic dentist. The skills necessary to do a beautiful smile makeover are not taught in dental school. It takes a considerable amount of post-graduate training to develop the skill and technique necessary. Plus, you want a dentist with an artistic eye.

So, how do you make sure you’re getting a qualified cosmetic dentist? My recomendation would be to find a dentist who is accredited with the American Academy of Cosmetic Dentistry (AACD). Only the top cosmetic dentist reach accreditation level.

This blog is brought to you by Lafayette, LA Cosmetic Dentist Dr. Mike Malone.