Dear Valued Patient:

We hope this letter finds you and your family in good health. Our community has been through a lot over the last few months, and all of us are looking forward to resuming our normal habits and routines. While many things have changed, one thing has remained the same: our commitment to your safety.

Infection control has always been a top priority for our practice and you may have seen this during your visits to our office. Our infection control processes are made so that when you receive care, it’s both safe and comfortable. We want to tell you about the infection control procedures we follow in our practice to keep patients and stay safe.

Our office follows infection control recommendations made by the American Dental Association (ADA), the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). We follow the activities of these agencies so that we are up-to-date on any new rulings or guidance that may be issued. We do this to make sure that our infection control procedures are current and adhere to each agencies’ recommendations.

You may see some changes when it is time for your next appointment. We made these changes to help protect our patients and staff. For example:

- Our office will communicate with you beforehand to ask some screening questions. You'll be asked those same questions again when you are in the office.

- We have hand sanitizer that we will ask you to use when you enter the office. You will also find some in the reception area and other places in the office for you to use as needed.

- You may see that our waiting room will no longer offer magazines, children's toys and so forth, since those items are difficult to clean and disinfect.

- Appointments will be managed to allow for social distancing between patients. That might mean that you're offered fewer options for scheduling your appointment.

- We will do our best to allow greater time between patients to reduce waiting times for you, as well as to reduce the number of patients in the reception area at any one time.

We look forward to seeing you again and are happy to answer any questions you may have about the steps we take to keep you, and every patient, safe in our practice. To make an appointment, please call our office at 704-364-9000. 

Thank you for being our patient. We value your trust and loyalty and look forward to welcoming back our patients, neighbors and friends.

Sincerely,

Dr. Porter and Team

Is Invisalign Right for Me?

Crooked, gapped, or crowded teeth can cause functional and cosmetic concerns, negatively affecting your oral health and confidence. When considering orthodontic treatment, you may ask yourself: “Is Invisalign® right for me?” Although traditional braces have been a trusted orthodontic method for decades, Invisalign is a popular alternative because it is effective, discreet, and comfortable. When weighing which orthodontic treatments suit your needs and lifestyle, answering four questions can help determine whether Invisalign is the best option for you.

Are You Hesitant to Wear Braces?

Woman placing Invisalign tray over her teeth
Invisalign is ideal for patients who are looking for a discreet orthodontic treatment. 

#1. What Is the Condition of Your Smile?

Although Invisalign is appropriate for mild to complex cases of misalignment, gaps, or overcrowding, it may not be an appropriate solution for treating severe orthodontic issues. In general, Invisalign can effectively correct:

  • Gapped teeth
  • Overly crowded teeth
  • Overbite
  • Underbite
  • Open bite

The ideal Invisalign candidate should have a treatable case, be over the age of 13, and remain committed to treatment. 

If you have a dramatic overbite, large underbite, or crossbite, traditional orthodontic treatment may be necessary. To evaluate whether your condition can be effectively corrected with Invisalign, the company offers a complimentary smile assessment. Although this tool can help you begin developing realistic expectations, only a dentist can decide whether you are a good candidate for treatment during an Invisalign consultation.

Treating Misalignment and Overcrowding

Close up of man's crowded teeth
Invisalign may be recommended to treat overly crowded teeth. This concern often leads to misalignment. 

#2. How Old Are You?

As younger patients quickly develop and change, so do their smiles. Children’s teeth are constantly shifting as their jaw continues growing, which makes it virtually impossible to create a predictable Invisalign treatment plan based off of an initial set of impressions. Teens over the age of 13 and adults are usually the best candidates for Invisalign treatment. To better suit the orthodontic needs of teens, Invisalign has created a specifically tailored line of products that allow teenagers to continue participating in active lifestyles while straightening their smiles.

#3. Are You Fully Committed?

Invisalign aligners must be worn at least 22 hours per day in order to effectively achieve your desired results within the proposed treatment timeline. The aligners should only be removed when brushing, flossing, or eating. As the aligners can be easily removed, many patients forego consistently wearing their aligners or lose their trays, which can lengthen your treatment timeline or completely alter the course of your treatment. In some cases, your dentist may have to take a new set of impressions and create a new treatment plan if your teeth have shifted significantly.

Once your Invisalign treatment is complete, you will likely be required to wear a retainer. Often these devices are only worn while you sleep. If your doctor recommends wearing a retainer, neglecting to do so may reverse the effects of your treatment. Therefore, even patients who have completed Invisalign treatment should be committed to follow-up care.

#4. Can You Afford Treatment?

Although the final cost of your Invisalign treatment will depend on the severity and duration of your case, treatment generally costs the same as traditional metal braces. If your insurance plan covers orthodontics, you may be able to pay for part or most of your Invisalign treatment using your dental benefits.

Invisalign offers a virtual cost calculator to help you estimate your treatment costs. If you are interested in financing your care, many doctors also work with third-party lenders such as LendingClub® and CareCredit®. Both companies offer low-interest financing to help you repay costs at a rate that works well for your budget.

Seek a Professional Opinion

If you or your child are over 13 and have a treatable case, you should also consider whether removable aligners and retainers work well with your lifestyle. Patients who are worried about the cost of Invisalign should note that investing in orthodontic treatment now can save you time and money on extensive restorative care in the future. If you still believe you are a good candidate for Invisalign, scheduling a consultation with your dentist is an important next step.

Dr. Porter

Charles A. Porter III, DDS

Dr. Porter implements the latest developments and highest standards in dentistry. He is a member of several prestigious organizations, including the:

  • American Dental Association
  • Academy of General Dentistry
  • North Carolina Dental Society 

To schedule your consultation, contact our Charlotte office online or call us at (704) 364-9000.

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Charlotte Office

135 S Sharon Amity Rd
Ste 200
Charlotte, NC 28211

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