Crooked teeth are quite common. In fact, the majority of the people you see who have straight teeth have most likely chosen teeth straightening options to get that beautiful straight-toothed smile. Crooked teeth are unique, adding both charm and personality to your smile. Unfortunately, misaligned teeth also tend to make people lack confidence in their smiles. If you are someone who is unhappy with your crooked, misaligned teeth, know that numerous techniques exist for straightening teeth.
If you are curious about straightening teeth at home, learning about do-it-yourself dentistry first is important. According to both the American Association of Orthodontics (AAO) and the American Dental Association (ADA), DIY dentistry can be hazardous to your dental health. While neither association will blatantly advise against straightening teeth at home, they do want you to be aware that possible risks exist.
Keep reading to discover three dangers of straightening teeth without a dentist, in addition to some of the best teeth straightening options.
Dangers of Straightening Teeth at Home
You are sitting at home watching late-night television, and an infomercial comes on with your favorite celebrity advertising the wonders of DIY orthodontics. You’ve been thinking about the best teeth straightening options for a while, and if this famous face says they work— well they must!
It seems too good to be true, and honestly, it is. The majority of teeth straightening options that you can do at home minimally use the consultations of dentists. As a result, the aligners that are supposed to fix your smile end up making things much worse. The main dangers of straightening teeth without a dentist include:
- Gum damage and recession
- Tooth loss
When your dental aligners don’t fit your teeth correctly, they can make your teeth even more crooked than they were beforehand. This can result in irreparable damage to your gums or even worse, an oral infection. This isn’t to say that all at-home straightening treatments will end this way. Some smiles just need to be more closely monitored as they are straightened. That’s why consulting your dentist before starting any teeth straightening option is important.
Teeth Straightening Options
When looking at the best options for straightening teeth, we have three recommendations: traditional braces, Invisalign, and the Six Month Smiles method. Each technique comes with its own benefits, which we will discuss below.
With traditional braces, metal braces are applied to the teeth with brackets, flexible wire, and sometimes rubber bands. Headgear is often an additional requirement that goes along with braces but is generally only worn at night.
Traditional braces are the way to go if you have incredibly crooked teeth. Traditional braces are able to fix a broad range of orthodontic issues, including severe problems. For example, if you have difficulty with a misaligned bite, braces will have no problem straightening this issue out so you have a nice, even bite. Braces are also incredibly durable, and the least likely to break out of the three recommended options.
Braces have advanced a lot since they were first introduced to the dental world. They are more comfortable these days, using less metal and smaller brackets. Prices for traditional braces vary, ranging from $3,000 to $7,500 depending on the severity of your orthodontic issues, your dental insurance plan, and where you live.
Not everyone wants a mouth full of metal to fix their crooked teeth. If you are wondering “Can I straighten my teeth without braces?” the answer is yes. Both Invisalign and Six Month Smiles provide this option.
Invisalign offers a discreet, convenient alternative to braces. Invisalign uses clear, plastic aligners that are custom-fit for your mouth to straighten your teeth. Invisalign is a good option for people with mild or moderately crooked teeth. The aligners fit over your teeth like a mouth guard and are replaced regularly throughout your treatment. The aligners must be worn for 20-22 hours each day in order to achieve the best results, and are generally worn around a year.
Similar to traditional braces, the price of Invisalign is going to be based on your dental issues, insurance coverage, and location. Typically, the cost will range between $3,500 and $8,500.
Six Month Smiles
The Six Month Smile teeth straightening technique offers two alternatives to traditional metal braces in the form of clear aligners or clear braces. Regardless of the option you choose, straightening teeth with the Six Month Smile method offers a distinct advantage in that the treatment only takes six months. However, with such a quick treatment plan, this method can only be used for orthodontic issues that are considered mild to moderate, and usually only fixes cosmetic concerns.
Six Month Smiles is only intended for those aged 16 and older, so if you are looking to fix the crooked teeth of a younger patient, this option is not for you. That being said, any dentist can apply the Six Month Smiles treatment, and an orthodontist does not have to be sought out if you think this option is for you.
As with the previous two options, the price is going to vary but will run you between $3,000 and $4,500.
Ready For Your Best Smile Ever?
Now that you are aware of the dangers that come with straightening teeth at home, in addition to a few different teeth straightening options, it’s time to call your dentist to explore the best way to straighten your teeth.
At Arkansas Family Dental, we can help! Our family dental practice is uniquely qualified to get you a bright, beautiful smile you can feel confident flashing to the world. Contact us online or call 501-263-2571.