If your idea of orthodontics is limited to what you saw in 80's movies, you are stuck in the past. Braces have changed — a lot. Clear aligners are a modern alternative to traditional braces that can help you or your child achieve a straight, beautiful smile. Instead of a mouth full of metal, they can discretely straighten their teeth without anyone knowing. Here's what you need to know.
What Are Clear Aligners?
Clear aligners are custom-made trays made of a clear plastic material that fits snugly around the teeth to gradually shift them into alignment. It is a modern orthodontic treatment option that is safe, effective, and completely incognito. The clear trays also have no sharp edges or uncomfortable wires that can poke or irritate the gums and cheeks like traditional braces do.
How Do Clear Aligners Work?
Clear aligners work by gently shifting teeth into their desired positions using a series of trays. Each tray is worn for a period of time before being replaced with the next one in the series. As each tray is worn, it applies pressure on certain areas of the mouth to move teeth into their desired positions. Each tray is designed to be slightly more advanced than the last one, so gradual changes occur throughout treatment. Treatment times vary depending on how much correction is needed but are typically about the same length of time as braces.
What Are the Benefits of Clear Aligners Over Traditional Braces?
There are many benefits of clear aligners, including:
- Discretion. Since they are made out of clear plastic, clear aligners are virtually invisible when worn., making them an ideal choice for anyone who doesn't want to feel self-conscious about wearing metal brackets and wires on their teeth.
- Smooth. Additionally, because no sharp edges or wires are poking out from around your mouth like traditional braces, clear aligners are also much more comfortable to wear than traditional braces.
- Removable. Unlike braces, you remove clear aligners when you eat, meaning no food is forbidden. You can eat corn on the cob and caramel apples whenever you want.
Clear aligners offer patients an effective yet discreet path to straighter smiles without the discomfort and hassle associated with traditional braces. If you have been considering orthodontic treatment for yourself or your child, talk to a dentist in your area today about whether clear aligner therapy might be right for you.