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Can You Straighten Your Teeth After Having Dental Implants?

18 / 09 / 2023

With innovative solutions that can discreetly straighten your teeth, people of all ages are getting treatments. One popular teeth straightening treatment is Invisalign, an option that gives you the smile you’ve always wanted without wearing a fixed appliance. 

Teeth straightening uses gentle force against your teeth to move them to a more desirable position. But if you’ve replaced a missing tooth with a dental implant and crown, you may wonder whether this rules you out for teeth straightening. 

Should you straighten your teeth before getting dental implants? Or is it okay to straighten your teeth when you already have implants in place?

In this guide, we’ll explore the best approach to straightening your teeth when you have dental implants.

What Are Dental Implants?

A dental implant is a titanium post that replaces the root of a missing tooth. Like your natural tooth roots, implants bed down into your jaw. Over time, the bone will gradually fuse to the titanium.

Once in place, dental implants provide a solid foundation for your replacement teeth. A single implant can support a dental crown, while other implant treatments can replace multiple missing teeth. 

What Is Invisalign?

Invisalign is a clear, removable aligner system used for straightening teeth. Using Invisalign, we can close unwanted gaps, reduce crowding, and straighten crooked or protruding teeth. We can also use Invisalign to fix complex bite issues that cause problems when you close your upper and lower teeth together. 

Can You Straighten Your Teeth If You Have Dental Implants?

The simple answer to this is yes! However, there’s a bit more to it than that. Once we’ve placed a dental implant, we won’t be able to move it. Dental implants shouldn’t move because they are fused to the bone. 

When we place dental implants, we always look to position them in the most natural way possible. 

But, when we’re placing a dental implant, we’re not doing anything about the position of the rest of your teeth. You may have previous, unresolved orthodontic issues that you’d like to address. Or issues may develop later in life. This can happen because, even if your jaw and teeth are fully developed, natural tooth movement is still possible later in life. 

Invisalign isn’t just discreet and comfortable; the step-by-step process provides very accurate results. Before your treatment starts, we’ll take digital scans of your teeth and jaws. Using Invisalign’s innovative software, we’ll plot every stage of your treatment. 

The precise nature of Invisalign means we can move the teeth that require adjustment while leaving your dental implant in position. Of course, because we cannot move the dental implant using Invisalign, your replacement tooth may not be in the perfect position. 

Is It Better To Straighten Teeth Before or After Getting Implants?

If you are considering getting dental implants but would also like to undergo Invisalign, it’s always best to talk to us before making a decision about the treatment order.

There are arguments both for and against straightening teeth before implants. Every case is different, and we would assess your specific situation and suggest a treatment plan that delivered the best clinical outcomes. 

The Arguments for Getting Invisalign Before Implants

If you don’t have dental implants yet, it’s sometimes easier to straighten your teeth first. By positioning your implants last, we can ensure they’re in the ideal spot and are perfectly aligned. 

Understanding the Risk of Bone Loss

The downside to receiving Invisalign treatment before dental implant placement is that you may experience bone loss. 

When you lose a tooth, the bone that once supported it will start to deteriorate. This process is called resorption. Minerals in your jaw are taken away in the bloodstream.

If you’ve lost bone mass in this way, we might be unable to place dental implants. This is because you’ll need sufficient bone density to support your dental implant. 

Some Invisalign treatments take six months, while others may require you to wear aligners for two years. Bone resorption can happen during this time. If you’ve lost bone, you may need a graft before implant surgery to help rebuild your jaw. 

Dental Implants and Invisalign at GM Dental

If you’re wondering whether you can straighten your teeth using Invisalign after having dental implants, the bottom line is that you can. Even though we cannot move dental implants, we can still correct the position of your other teeth and give you a smile you can feel confident about. 

Get in touch with our team today and schedule a consultation to discuss your specific needs.

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