In general, Invisalign aligners work the same way that traditional braces do: applying carefully controlled force to teeth to slowly shift them into a better position. The differences are clear though, as Invisalign is made of nearly invisible polyurethane plastic vs wire and brackets.
So to discuss more about how Invisalign works, we need to tell you how they are custom made. The Invisalign trays are unique as your mouth and teeth are unique. Specialized computer software helps your orthodontist design a plan for moving your teeth from their current positions into the best possible alignment via 3D scans and modeling.
Dr. S. Kendall Dunn explains, "This movement is broken down into stages. For each stage, two Invisalign aligners will be created for you-one to fit over your top teeth and one for the bottom. You will wear this first set of aligners for one week for a minimum of 20 hours per day. Then you will move on to the next set of aligners in the series, continuing gradual movement in this way until your teeth are correctly aligned."
We mentioned wearing the aligners 20 hours a day, actually 22 hours a day is preferred. So, they are removed only prior to eating and for brushing and flossing. With this orthodontic treatment, the patient has a lot of responsibility towards the success. If you don't wear a tray for the required amount of time will cause delays in the treatment plan. If a patient isn't wearing their aligners the required amount of time, their orthodontist can quickly tell.