What are attachments for invisalign?

Invisalign treatment has revolutionized orthodontics by offering a discreet and comfortable alternative to traditional braces.

One important aspect of Invisalign treatment is the use of attachments, or buttons, which are small tooth-colored dental pieces that are bonded to your teeth, and play a significant role in moving teeth when aligners alone are not enough to achieve desired results.

Invisalign attachments or buttons serve as anchor points for rubber bands and other appliances that are needed to exert additional force to complete some tooth movements, when aligners or braces alone cannot achieve the required movement.

What are attachments for invisalign

What are Invisalign Attachments?

Buttons are small auxiliaries used in Invisalign treatment to attach or anchor rubber bands. They are often required when the orthodontist determines that certain movements cannot be accomplished with aligners alone.

Buttons provide additional support and help guide the bite to ensure proper alignment of the upper and lower teeth. They allow for controlled and gradual movement, so that each tooth is shifted into its proper position over time. The presence of attachments enhances the effectiveness of the aligners and can contribute to faster treatment times.

These buttons are typically made from a composite resin material that matches the color of your teeth, making them virtually invisible. There are also metal buttons, but they are mostly used in the back teeth for aesthetic purposes.

Benefits of Attachments

1. Improved Tooth Movement

In certain cases, aligners alone may not be sufficient to achieve specific movements, such as rotating a tooth or adjusting its position above the gumline. Attachments serve as anchor points, directing the force of the aligner more effectively and predictably to achieve desired tooth movements.

2. Aesthetic Appeal

Despite the presence of attachments, Invisalign treatment remains one of the most aesthetically pleasing orthodontic options. Attachments are designed to blend seamlessly with the natural color of the teeth, making them minimally noticeable to others.

Types of Buttons

Attachments come in different shapes and sizes, such that the selection is customized for each individual tooth movement required. There are two common types of buttons:

Tooth-Colored Buttons

Tooth-colored buttons are used in visible areas of the mouth to maintain the aesthetic appeal of the treatment. They are carefully matched to the color of the teeth, making them blend discreetly with the smile.

Metal Buttons

Metal buttons are typically utilized on the back teeth where they are less visible. Their use is mainly for functional purposes, as they provide the necessary support without compromising the aesthetics of the treatment.

Invisalign Attachments Procedure

The process of attaching the buttons to your teeth is typically quick and painless. Your orthodontist will carefully position the attachments on the designated teeth, taking into consideration both functionality and esthetics.

1Customized Template: Before the attachment procedure, a customized template is created to mark the precise locations where the attachments will be placed on the teeth.

2. Tooth Preparation: The teeth receiving attachments are thoroughly cleaned and prepared to ensure proper bonding.

3. Bonding and Curing: Dental bonding material is applied to the marked spots, and a special light is used to harden or set the composite material. This process is quick and straightforward.

4. Tooth selection: The Invisalign attachments are carefully bonded to specific teeth during the course of your invisible braces treatment, with each set of aligners.

Keep in mind that attachments are designed to be temporary and can be easily removed by the orthodontist at the end of the treatment. They do not cause any permanent damage to the enamel.

Invisalign Attachments on Every Tooth

Each attachment is custom-selected by your Invisalign provider and placed on specific teeth based on the specific movement required for each tooth to achieve the designed alignment.

The selected attachments are bonded to the teeth using dental bonding glue, ensuring a secure and stable grip.

The need for attachments varies depending on the specifics of your dental case and the treatment plan designed by your orthodontist. While not all cases require attachments, they are typically used in most cases to optimize the effectiveness of the aligners.

How Many Attachments for Invisalign?

The number of attachments needed for Invisalign treatment varies depending on individual cases. Your orthodontist will determine the number and placement of attachments based on the specific teeth movements required to achieve your desired results.

In some cases, you may only need a few attachments, while others may require attachments on multiple teeth due to multiple crooked teeth.

The precise placement of attachments is a crucial aspect of the treatment plan, as they provide the necessary grip for the aligners to exert the right amount of force on your teeth, facilitating controlled movement throughout the treatment process.

Oral Hygiene and Adaptation with Invisalign Buttons

It may take some time to adjust to the presence of attachments. They make the aligners fit more snugly, requiring practice in placing and removing them. Regular oral hygiene practices, such as brushing and flossing, should be maintained to prevent staining or discoloration around the attachments.

Final Thoughts

It is important to note that not all cases require attachments. Simpler cases may not necessitate the use of attachments, and the aligners alone will provide sufficient tooth movement. Your orthodontist will evaluate your specific dental condition and treatment plan to determine if attachments are necessary for your Invisalign treatment.


  • Editorial team

    A team comprising oral health care professionals, researchers, and professional Writers, striving to impart you with the knowledge to improve your oral health, and that of your loved ones. 

  • Lilly

    Lilly, aka, Liza Lee, is a passionate community oral health officer and our lead writer. She's not only well-versed in performing a multitude of dental procedures, including preventive, restorative, and cosmetic, but also an avid writer. Driven by the significant oral health burden all around her, Lilly strives to build capacity and promote oral health. She envisions making a lasting impact by advancing research, prevention, and promotion efforts to alleviate oral health disparities. Please share your views and opinions on my posts.

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