If you are looking for clear aligners to correct crooked teeth or bite issues, numerous options claim to work effectively, safely, and at a low cost. The possibilities include mail-in aligners that don’t require you to go to the dentist. If you are searching for convenience and affordability, mail-in aligners can be tempting as they promise similar results to professional treatments but without the associated costs or hassle. However, it is never a good idea to handle orthodontic problems on your own if you want to achieve your smile goals. Read on to find out why you should always go to a dentist for clear aligners.
Good Oral Health Before Treatment is Critical
The most critical step in any orthodontic treatment is examining the overall state of your oral health. Clear aligners can aggravate any existing problem such as tooth decay or gum disease if left untreated. Therefore, your dentist will have to address any oral health issue before administering clear aligners, as you have to wear them for a minimum of 22 hours daily.
If you decide to order mail-in aligners and go about the process yourself, you may worsen your oral health and jeopardize the success of your treatment. Going to the dentist helps you maintain your oral health and gives you access to the right information on how to take care of your teeth and gums during the treatment.
Not Everyone is a Candidate for Clear Aligners
While crooked teeth or improper alignment may make you a candidate for clear aligners, not everyone is eligible for the treatment. Other factors that determine your suitability include age, oral health, and the severity of your dental problem. Clear aligners are ideal for adults and teens whose jaws have stopped growing.
Since clear aligners are not always the perfect fit for your teeth, they may need to be resized or reshaped, a procedure you cannot undertake without a professional’s help. Note that extreme overbite or underbite may require more than just aligners as they cannot remedy bone issues.
Considering the numerous factors that determine your suitability for clear aligners, you need a professional evaluation to ensure that it is safe to move your teeth. A professional assessment requires x-rays and bite evaluation to examine your bone health and structure. Getting aligners without the bite and bone assessment puts you at risk of root dehiscence, which can lead to sensitivity and pain.
Root dehiscence refers to alveolar bone loss beneath the gum line. It is characterized by gum recession, which makes the root of your tooth visible as your jawbone continues to degenerate.
How Clear Aligners Work
Clear aligners consist of clear removable trays that work by gently exerting pressure on your teeth to move them gradually over time. The pressure goes all the way down to your roots to move your teeth. Although the process continues until you achieve your smile goals, you have to adjust or change your aligners at intervals of two weeks. Note that you need to wear your aligners for at least 22 hours a day for the best results.
It is essential to stick to the aligner adjustment schedule recommended by your dentist and go for regular checkups to ensure that your treatment goes as intended. Maintaining proper hygiene during your treatment will protect your oral health and ensure the success of your treatment. Some of the ways you can take care of your teeth during treatment include:
- Removing your aligners when eating
- Soaking aligners at least once a day in a disinfecting solution to kill any bacteria and prevent odors
- Brushing your teeth after eating and before putting back your aligners
Remember not to use hot water on your clear aligners as it can damage them. Your dentist will always provide instructions on how to take care of your teeth and your aligners.
Depend on Professional Guidance for Orthodontic Treatment
If you are considering getting clear aligners, it is in your best interests to visit your dentist or orthodontist instead of going at it alone. Your dentist not only assesses the condition of your oral health but also offers you appropriate treatment based on your unique needs. What’s more, they can record your treatment for future reference, create a personalized treatment plan for you, and monitor your progress until you achieve your desired results. Seeking professional guidance for your orthodontic treatment ensures you achieve your smile goals without putting your oral health at risk.