DIY Braces – are they worth the risk?
Over the past few years there has been a dramatic increase in the number of people looking to improve the appearance of their teeth with options such as clear braces and clear aligner therapy. DIY braces and at home teeth straightening options are popping up everywhere, promising dentist quality results at a fraction of the price. The convenience of mail order braces seems unbeatable, allowing you to straighten your teeth without the need for regular dental appointments. Unfortunately, things that sound too good to be true most often are! DIY solutions can cause even more damage to your teeth in the long run.
With this in mind there are some things the team at College Dental Surgeries want to make you aware of regarding your choice of teeth straightening.
What are mail order aligners?
Companies have started to offer cheaper alternatives to attending the dentist or orthodontist for your teeth straightening procedures, through mail order businesses. These companies will send you an at home impression kit to take impressions of your teeth. Once these are sent back, they will be reviewed by one of their technicians, who determines if you are suitable for these aligners. If so, aligners are sent back to be worn for a prescribed period.
This may seem very similar to the process of teeth straightening through your dental surgery, but there are some very big differences.
- Teeth straightening requires supervision
Moving teeth is a medical procedure and needs personal supervision by a dentist or orthodontist. The dentist or orthodontist can monitor how your teeth are moving and if necessary, they will
Dentists have years of training and they will identify and treat serious oral health concerns before they even consider offering their patients’ teeth straightening treatments. Serious oral health problems, like gum disease and cavities can be overlooked with home kits because there’s not a lot that can be seen from a few photos or impressions. Mail order aligners do not use x-rays to see the structure below the gum line and with mail order aligners there is no way of knowing what level of training the people assessing your photos and impressions have. To complete any tooth movement without the supervision of a dentist or orthodontist is very risky.
- More expensive in the long run
Aligners are a medical device. Their use and care require a trained, experienced professional dentist who is an expert in their field. Straightening your teeth and aligning your bite is a considerable commitment. Your dentist or orthodontist has taken the time to learn all aspects of the science behind orthodontics. Why trust your smile to anyone else?