Potential Issues With Over-the-Counter Aligners
While purchasing teeth aligners over-the-counter may seem like an easy, affordable way to get straighter teeth, the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) lists a number of potential issues to consider first. Patients may not receive an in-person evaluation before treatment begins, which is concerning because not everyone is a good candidate for aligners. Some individuals' teeth and gums aren't healthy enough to begin orthodontic treatment. Others may have orthodontic conditions that are better suited to traditional braces or need treatment prior to braces being placed.
While using over-the-counter aligners, you may not receive hands-on supervision from an orthodontist, who is able to monitor your progress and address any concerns that arise during treatment. The AAO emphasizes that when orthodontic treatment isn't done correctly, complications — like gum damage, tooth loss and bite changes — can occur. It can be expensive to repair these problems, and in some cases, the damage to your teeth may be irreversible.
If you want to straighten your teeth, consult your dentist and orthodontist. These dental professionals can determine if you're a good candidate for orthodontics, and if so, they can design an appropriate treatment plan to make your ideal smile a reality.