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Welcome to Our Smile Blog


The Journey of a Smile Makeover: Invisalign, Bridges and Veneers

At Karen Harriman, DDS, our team loves to be part of a smile makeover, and not just because our patients leave our dental practice in Falls Church with an enormous smile and a skip in their step, but also for the long term health benefits that having a well aligned bite and healthy teeth can provide. If you are unhappy with your teeth or have dental issues such as tooth loss or teeth grinding, it’s never too late to correct these to provide you with a smile of your dreams.

The Dental Problem

One of our very own members of staff, Meagan suffered from orthodontic relapse, causing issues with her bite. This led to teeth grinding that made her front teeth become shorter than the rest of her teeth. She also is suffering with two missing teeth (one on her upper and lower teeth) making it hard to chew and allowing for food to get stuck in the gaps.

The Dental Solution

Dr. Harriman designed a three step plan to restore Meagan’s teeth back to health that will make her have a beautiful smile that lasts.

  1. Use Invisalign Clear Aligners to adjust her occlusion (i.e. her bite) to function correctly

  2. Add a bridge to her upper and lower teeth to close the gaps in her teeth

  3. Add veneers to her front four teeth to restore esthetics, and give Meagan back her beautiful smile.

The Dental Process

Dr. Harriman uses the most advanced technology to ensure the Invisalign process provides the best dental results. She uses the iTero Element scanner which is a painless and fuss-free intraoral camera that scans all your teeth in just minutes. This helps Dr. Harriman to examine the areas of your teeth that need to be moved/aligned by Invisalign and also allows our patients to see what the end results should look like! Invisalign will move your teeth over time to make sure your teeth are straight and your bite functions well.

Once the teeth have been aligned, Dr. Harriman will begin the process of adding the bridges. A dental bridge is an artificial tooth that is held in place by the abutment (a connecting element) using the teeth on either side of the gap. This will close the gaps between your teeth with a tooth that matches your other teeth.

The final part of Meagan’s journey will be porcelain veneers that are designed to match the color of her other teeth and will be completed in just two appointments usually.

The Results

Meagan is currently on her 4th Invisalign tray and her treatment should take approximately six months. It’s important that our patients wear their Invisalign aligners at least 22 hours a day to ensure the best results. We advise only removing them to eat and drink (with the exception of water). Keep an eye on our social media to see the final results in a few months!

The benefits patients will see after receiving Invisalign, bridge and veneer treatment will include:

  • Long term improved dental health

  • Lower likelihood to have tooth decay as it will be easier to brush and floss and less food will get stuck in the gaps where there was previously tooth loss

  • Easier to chew and eat

  • Teeth grinding will improve dramatically and the Invisalign retainer will act as a nightguard too

  • Increased happiness and confidence with a smile you are proud of

If you are suffering from any of these dental issues, please get in touch with Dr. Harriman and the Falls Church dental team to understand what your options are to give you a long-lasting smile that makes you beam from within! Our cosmetic and restorative dentistry procedures can improve anyone’s dental health and confidence!


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