Should Straightening Your Teeth Be Your Next Pandemic Project?
by Umair Ahmed, on Jan 27, 2021 4:36:27 PM
A year ago, when we collectively were forced to work from home, we all found something to do. A hobby. My personal guilty pleasure was baking that perfect Sourdough. After watching video after video on YouTube, it seemed so easy. Heck, you didn’t even need yeast—it was sold out anyway—you could make a starter from scratch! I must admit that my initial results were utterly inedible, more suited for a pumpkin chunkin projectile than personal consumption.
After many tries, I did manage to bake a more edible loaf but, there was still much to be desired. Reluctantly, I concluded that perfection in bread making requires mastery of seemingly small details and getting reliably beautiful results is best left to the experts.
Bread making is not the only quarantine pastime. We have all been in countless Zoom meetings, forced to look at our faces at weird angles and in the unflattering light. The teeth that never bothered us before, now seem to be out of place, slowly relapsing to where they were in our teenage years before we had braces. Teeth straightening at home has all the trappings of our next pandemic project and, best of all, with aligners, those clear trays, no one on Zoom even knows you are wearing them. Right?
Millions of Americans have bought into Smile Direct Club and other D-I-Y teeth straightening fad but just like baking that perfect Sourdough loaf, some things are better left to professionals.
Let me level with you: Do-It-Yourself aligners will move your teeth. In an Instagram photo, they will look just fine, just like my okay-ish Sourdough bread results. If that’s your goal, mail-order aligners from Candid or Byte may just be the ticket for you. But if you want great results, we suggest that you trust your smile to a licensed dentist.
I know what you are thinking, here comes that pitch.
No, not quite.
We do manufacture aligners. Like many D-I-Y companies, we had the chance to offer aligners to you at home. We knew that the demand was huge, but we chose not to chase that market because teeth straightening is not an experiment. Your smile is too important to be left to chance.
Getting that perfect smile does require mastery of a few details. The first one is control. You see, teeth are stubborn and they seem to have a mind of their own. Before you waive your hand and say, nah, your teeth have drifted on their own, haven’t they? They're truly stubborn creatures, and slippery too. Nature makes them so because if they weren’t, food would get stuck to them all the time.
Moving these tiny slippery things requires some way of grabbing them—we need a foothold. Aligners do this by encapsulating your teeth but the problem is that the teeth tend to slip within the aligner. The slippage is small but over the course of treatment, the difference can be dramatic: a perfect smile with good teeth alignment (sideways and in and out) versus just straighter teeth, sometimes with noticeable gaps. Dentists overcome this slippage problem by boding tiny bumps of composite. These bumps help the aligner gain a foothold. Don’t worry, no one on a Zoom call can see them. The bumps are tiny and match the color of your teeth. Another advantage of this control is that your teeth move faster. You can’t bond these bumps (aka attachments) at home, so you need a dentist to do this for you.
Another advantage of getting treatment from a dentist is to let him/her free your teeth so they can move. Like an old set of gears that need polish to remove rust, stuck teeth need some TLC. When teeth overlap each other, tartar and other junk can build up. Not only does tartar cause cavities, it also works like a glue, binding your teeth from moving. Your dentist will clean your teeth, and if required, “dress” them slightly, freeing them to move. As with before, the end result is faster treatment.
Given just these two reasons, Six Month Smiles believes in teeth straightening under the guidance of a dentist. Yes, this costs a little more, but your smile is worth more than the couple hundred dollars you'll save. Having the dentist do your ortho will also save you from the D-I-Y nightmares these people endured.
Your journey to a beautiful smile with more predictable and faster results, starts with the dentist. Click here to find a Six Month Smiles Dentist near you.