Invisalign clear aligners are removable allowing patients to remove them to eat, drink, and care for their teeth. However, this can make it tempting to remove them more often and for longer than prescribed…and that’s where compliance indicators are helpful.
You must wear your Invisalign aligners at least 22 hours a day in order to keep your orthodontic treatment on track.
The more frequently you take your aligners out and the longer you leave them out, the more significant the setbacks to your treatment will be. Treatment will take much longer than anticipated for patients who do not comply with proper wear.
Invisalign Teen aligners have compliance indicators on them to help remedy this problem and to make it easier for the orthodontist to tell if their patients are following directions.
What are compliance indicators?
Invisalign Teen Compliance Indicators are a series of blue dots located on the backs of the aligners, where they’re hidden when the aligner is worn. The blue dots will slowly fade away over the two week period while the aligners are being worn. If the patient has failed to wear the aligners as instructed, the blue dots will still be visible to the orthodontist when the patient attends their next appointment.
If the orthodontist consistently sees the blue dots when the patient comes in for their regular appointments, they’ll know that the patient is not correctly following the directions for aligner wear. This will give the orthodontist the opportunity to remind the patient and their parents about why wearing the aligners as recommended is so important. If a patient can't or won't comply then the orthodontist can discuss other treatment options, such as traditional metal braces.
Compliance indicators also tell the orthodontist if the treatment is effective. If a patient has been wearing the aligners as prescribed, yet the anticipated tooth movement is not taking place, adjustments can be made to the treatment schedule.
Compliance indicators also help the patient to stay on track with their treatment. Each aligner been carefully calibrated to achieve a certain tooth movement during each stage of wear. Changing to a new aligner before your mouth is ready, or even leaving a given set in for too long, can hinder the treatment process.
It's easy for patients to lose track of how much longer they need to wear that set of aligners if they have been taking their aligners out more often than they should, or leaving them out for long periods of time.
Compliance indicators will only fade after a given set of aligners has worn for a full two weeks, making it easier for the patient to pick up where they left off, and know when to change to a new set.