SACRAMENTO, Calif., Jan. 6, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- One of the primary reasons that people ask for Invisalign orthodontic treatment is to fix crowded teeth. In the past, a common procedure for solving this problem involved extracting one or more teeth to make space for those left behind. Indeed, many dental practices still use extraction for patients with braces. With Invisalign, however, other techniques are preferred before extraction, especially Interproximal Reduction, or IPR.
What is IPR?
IPR is just one technique to create additional space for crowded teeth. Initially, dentists at the Sacramento Dentistry Group prefer to expand the jaw and adjust the incline of the teeth (called proclination in dentistry) to create additional space. A larger dental arch simply has extra room for its teeth! Yet the point usually arrives when more is required to keep teeth from overlapping. This is where IPR can be applied.
Basically, IPR uses finely abrasive instruments, usually precise strips or flexible discs similar to sandpaper, to take off very small amounts of tooth enamel. The goal is to eventually remove no more than .2 or .3 millimeters from the chosen teeth, over more than one visit. That's about the thickness of two to six pieces of paper pressed together. When you consider the width of healthy enamel (up to 2.5 millimeters, roughly ten times that), this is a very small amount. Plus, studies show that IPR does not increase the risk of tooth decay. Spreading the IPR out over multiple teeth minimizes the amount of reduction needed on specific teeth and does little to alter their overall appearance, in some cases actually improving it.
Should I Fear IPR?
Think of it this way: would you rather pull one or more teeth to make room for the rest, and then reshape those that remain to look "normal," or is it better to finely adjust the width of some teeth so you can keep them all? Dr. Brian Steele of the Sacramento Dentistry Group is firm in the belief that keeping as many of your natural teeth as possible is a primary goal of the modern dentist. Invisalign and IPR help patients accomplish that. Teeth that are not crowded experience less wear and decay over time, making many orthodontic procedures more than just cosmetic treatments. Straighter teeth and good-looking smiles can lead to greater dental longevity!
For more information about Invisalign and IPR, contact the Sacramento Dentistry Group at 916-538-6900, visit their website at sacramentodentistry.com or stop by their convenient downtown office at 1105 E Street in Sacramento.
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SOURCE Sacramento Dentistry Group