Keeping those pearly whites shining and looking their best can be very expensive. Some of us are blessed with really great teeth. Some of us aren’t
No matter how well we take care of our teeth, some of these little guys can’t help but come out crooked. Thankfully, braces have come a long way.
Actually, braces technology has gotten almost too good. To the degree that some people are trying to reproduce braces, namely Invisalign’s invisible braces.
With a 3D printer and some research, fixing your crooked teeth can be possible without ever paying for an orthodontist. The question everyone should be asking is:
“Is this safe, and is it worth the risk?”
DIY Invisible Braces
Last year, a college student made some waves in the dental news. He printed his very own clear pair of teeth aligners. That’s not all, though–they actually worked.
Now, let’s make things clear here. This kid wasn’t your average arts major tinkering with a 3D printer. He engineered these and did lots of work to achieve this.
What he proved was not that orthodontics is obsolete, but that invisible braces could be printed outside the office.
His 3D printer was also not the home variety, either. His college printer was industrial grade and nowhere near practical. The polymer he used to make the aligners was not medical grade, either.
All these inconvenient facts for believers are often missed, which is why this experiment spawned a whole movement of DIY dental trends.
We get it, dental health care can be expensive, but is it worth it to risk worsening your health? Should you wait a bit longer and save up for a professional treatment or do it yourself?
Here are a couple more reasons why you should avoid DIY dentistry.
When you get invisible braces at the dentist, the process is very involved and cautious. The polymer to create the mold is prepared in a sterile lab, not some warehouse like an inkjet cartridge.
The molds are carefully laid out with special software. It’s not something college students could ever use. Even if they could get their hands on it, this software needs the understanding of an orthodontist.
This is because aligners are intended to gently shift teeth in and out of the way. Making them straight is a product of careful planning and understanding.
Even after the manufacturing of the invisible braces, they still need to be monitored. Sometimes gums create unintended shifting. Too much pressure can create cracks or damage.
Only an orthodontist can prevent irreparable damage from poor alignment.
Let’s just say that someone got lucky with their DIY invisible braces. Maybe they actually got some positive results from the first few weeks.
Well, the problem here is that you don’t have any follow-up alignments. To maintain that perfect smile, you need more than just one pair of Invisalign inserts. You’ll need some sort of retainer to prevent teeth from settling and shifting.
An orthodontist provides Invisalign as a multi-stage treatment to prevent any unwanted future imbalance.
‘Simple’ DIY: Gap Bands
Problem: You have a space between your teeth that you would like closed.
Solution: Pull those teeth closer together gradually with a rubber band.
Sounds simple enough, but as with most dental procedures, teeth are anything but simple. This trend of DIY at-home orthodontics is actually pretty dangerous.
You could lose both of your front teeth, or even worse.
A company called GapBands will actually sell you elastic rubber bands to slip over your teeth. The problem here is that it’s on you to monitor and detect any complications. You, the person with zero orthodontic experience.
If that band slips underneath your gum-line, you are in for a world of hurt. You could lose those teeth if it takes too long for you to get a dentist to remove it.
The band can literally rip the roots from under the teeth. This can likewise cause painful infections, potentially life-threatening ones.
Nothing Can Replace Experience
No matter how basic or straight-forward a medical treatment may seem, nothing can substitute a decade of experience. DIY invisible braces and other treatments can leave you worse off, both financially and medically.
Technological advancements are only as effective as they are in the hands of experts and licensed professionals. Orthodontists don’t just print out a mold from the scanned teeth images. Evaluating and surveying patient information is key.
Companies like GapBands take advantage of this disconnect between doctor and patient relations. They want to play into that paranoia that everyone in the healthcare industry is out to squeeze you for everything you’ve got. Don’t listen to them.
Healthcare prices should not take precedence over health and safety.
Accessible Austin Orthodontics
Looking for invisible braces or other dental services to put your perfect smile back on display? Here at Moody Orthodontics, we understand the pressures of balancing bills with personal care.
We say that you should never compromise on either physical or mental health. Our smiles are so important for maintaining confidence and happiness.
Don’t let desperation get the best of you and put you in a highly risky situation. Just plan your dental treatments with a professional who can help you do it right and without the stress.
Take this opportunity to schedule a free consultation. Learn about our affordable treatment options and payment plans.
Life is too short to be going around giving people half-smiles.
Open wide, say cheese, and share more of those full-bellied laughs!