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Braces and clear aligners bring improved health, aesthetics, and functionality to your smile. But a smile transformation should still look like you and complement your facial features. And since everyone’s smile is different, doesn’t it make sense to straighten teeth with custom treatments designed just for you? 

At VanderWall Orthodontics, that’s exactly what we do — we’re all about creating smiles unique to each patient for truly complementary results. But how do we achieve that? We offer patients in Raleigh and Durham, and Cary, NC personalized orthodontic systems: InBrace and LightForce custom braces, and Invisalign® and 3M™ Clarity Aligners clear aligners. These custom orthodontic treatments are designed and produced to achieve each patient’s specific smile goals — for a smile that’s uniquely you.

It Starts With Innovative Digital Technology

Custom treatment with InBrace lingual braces, LightForce braces, Invisalign and 3M Clarity Aligners all start with the latest digital dental technology. So at VanderWall Orthodontics, we go high-tech: digital scans, 3D renderings, and treatment planning software to plan your tooth movements from beginning to end.

Here’s a rundown of the technology we use for custom orthodontic treatment:

iTero® Scanner – Our  iTero Scanner is how we take quick, comfortable impressions of your teeth without any goopy, messy trays. The scanner takes high-definition images of your teeth that appear on our screen instantly, allowing us (and you!) to see a 3D model of your teeth from every angle. 

Treatment Planning Software – The 3D rendering we get from the iTero Scanner means we have an exact model of your teeth from which to plan precise custom treatment with braces or clear aligners. We plan your treatment right onto the 3D model, moving every tooth for every step of your progress. 

It’s worth mentioning that treatment planning for LightForce braces involves intuitive AI planning that first positions your braces accurately based on your 3D teeth rendering. Dr. VanderWall has full control of positioning and can then go in to make any tweaks and changes as needed until it’s perfect. 

The Perks of Digitally-Designed Custom Treatment Plans

Digital treatment planning has several perks. One is precision — each tooth’s movement, at each step, is planned from beginning to end. Two, an experienced orthodontist like Dr. VanderWall can see potential issues and troubleshoot them before your prescription even goes to the lab. And three, you get to see how your teeth will look at the end of treatment before it even starts!

Once your treatment plan is ready, your Raleigh, Cary, and Durham, NC orthodontist sends your prescription to the appropriate lab (InBrace, LightForce, Invisalign or 3M). They produce your custom appliance from scratch and send it to Dr. VanderWall when complete.

InBrace, LightForce, Invisalign and 3M Clarity Aligners: What Makes Each Appliance Uniquely Custom? 

InBrace braces

The difference between InBrace lingual braces vs. other lingual braces is primarily the wires. InBrace braces use innovative, custom memory wires called Smartwires™. The shape and movement of these wavy-looking wires are designed from the digital scan and 3D rendering of your teeth.

Smartwires are shaped to fit only your teeth and are preprogrammed to move teeth from their starting positions to the final outcome right from the get-go. The locking loop, non-sliding design makes the wearing experience more comfortable than traditional ligating lingual braces. Plus, you get to skip the periodic tightening and adjustments that traditional metal braces require. Smartwires are essentially set-it-and-forget-it!

LightForce Braces

At first glance, these front-of-teeth braces might look like the metal braces you’re used to seeing but they’re miles ahead. The biggest difference between LightForce braces vs. traditional metal braces? The backs of LightForce brackets are shaped to the contours of your teeth. You get a precise, secure fit against your teeth: LightForce brackets are designed and 3D-printed specifically for your teeth contours and won’t fit anyone else’s teeth. 

You can also rest assured that you’re in expert hands when getting LightForce braces with us. We recently celebrated treating 100 cases with LightForce!

Invisalign and 3M Clarity Aligners

If you’ve ever seen clear aligners, you’ll notice they have the outlines of teeth. But not just any teeth — only the wearer’s teeth! The BPA-free, plastic trays of clear aligners like Invisalign and 3M Clarity Aligners are inherently custom-designed to fit over the wearer’s teeth and their teeth only. 

Through the digital planning process, Dr.VanderWall gets the exact shape of your teeth and is able to plan your teeth movements from one aligner set to the next. 

Benefits of Custom Braces and Clear Aligners 

Orthodontic treatment with custom braces or clear aligners means a host of benefits for the patient. Benefits of custom braces and clear aligners include:

  • Potentially shorter treatment times
  • More comfort
  • Precise, predictable, amazing results 

Shorter, More Convenient Treatment Time

Who doesn’t want their orthodontic treatment to go as fast as possible? You might be wondering, “How long do custom braces take over traditional ones?” One of the big benefits of custom braces and clear aligners like Invisalign is efficient tooth movements and, therefore, the potential for speedier treatment times. But in general, the time it takes to straighten teeth also depends on three other things: the complexity of your orthodontic issues, your age, and the health of your teeth.

With LightForce braces, consider that you’re not coming in for tightening or adjustment visits, so you definitely save time there. And when it comes to InBrace custom braces, the preprogrammed Smartwires take a direct path to your final results for efficient movement and faster results.

If you opt for clear aligners, a shorter treatment time is primarily based on two things: sticking to your wearing schedule of 22 hours per day and switching your sets at the prescribed times. Orthodontic treatment with clear aligners can be as quick as a year for simpler cases.

More Comfort

General perception is that braces are uncomfortable. And it’s fair to say there can be temporary discomfort at certain times, like after an adjustment. But custom braces like InBrace lingual braces and LightForce braces, as well as clear aligners, are known for being more comfortable. 

InBrace vs. regular lingual braces are friction-free due to the wave-like, non-sliding design of the wires. And with LightForce braces,  their low profile, smoother edges and tie wings feel less obtrusive in your mouth.

Of course, clear aligners fit on teeth differently than braces. No brackets, no wires. So one of the benefits of Invisalign and 3M Clarity Aligners is not having the friction that often comes with braces.

Precise, Predictable, Amazing Results 

As mentioned, we use innovative digital equipment and high-tech software for our custom orthodontics. This allows us to design treatments with precision, and get predictable results that our patients love.

Moving teeth with precision: Digital treatment planning allows Dr. VanderWall to design a treatment plan that progresses with precise, specific tooth movements —  step-by-step and from beginning to end. He can see any potential issues that might arise and troubleshoot on-the-spot before you even start wearing your appliance.

Predictable outcomes: Virtual treatment planning for custom appliances also means you and Dr. VanderWall will know what your outcome will look like. You can literally see your smile transformation on the screen so you can move forward with confidence in your treatment.

Amazing results: The outcome of precisely-planned tooth movements paired with a perfectly fitting, custom appliance? A smile transformation that isn’t a one-size-fits all but is you — with straight, healthier, happy teeth!

Are You A Candidate for Custom Braces and Clear Aligners?

Now that you’re up to speed on the ins and outs of custom appliances at VanderWall Orthodontics, are you wondering if you or your child is a candidate? 

You’ll be glad to know that custom braces for your teeth are suitable for almost anyone with orthodontic issues. Whether you’re dealing with a crossbite, overbite, or underbite, misaligned or crooked teeth, custom braces will align your bite and straighten your teeth successfully.

And how about clear aligners? You might have heard that clear aligner treatment like Invisalign or 3M Clarity Aligners is only for simple cases. But today, even complex cases can be successfully treated with clear aligners in the hands of an expert orthodontist like Dr. VanderWall.

The best way to find out which custom treatment will work for you is to visit the VanderWall Orthodontics team at our Raleigh, Cary, or Durham office. Book a free consultation with Dr. VanderWall and start your smile transformation.

Contact us today!

Dr. Clay VanderWall

Author Dr. Clay VanderWall

Dr. VanderWall attended Kalamazoo College, graduating with a Bachelor of Arts in Health Sciences. He spent a semester doing research at the Dental Research Center of the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill where he wrote his Senior Individualized Project (SIP). He furthered his studies at the University of Detroit-Mercy School of Dentistry, receiving his Doctor of Dental Surgery in 1999. He graduated with honors and was inducted into the national dental honor society, Omicron Kappa Upsilon (OKU). He also received the Pierre Fauchard Academy Student Award and was a recipient of the Health Professions Scholarship from the United States Navy.

More posts by Dr. Clay VanderWall

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