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Clear Aligners 101: Aligner Attachments

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Medically Reviewed By Colgate Global Scientific Communications

It’s never too late to have the smile you always wanted. Advancements in orthodontics have made getting straight teeth more accessible than ever—and clear teeth aligners let you do it more discretely than braces. Learn how they work their magic and see if teeth aligners are the right treatment for you.

What are Clear Aligner Attachments?

Clear aligners are fantastic alternatives to metal braces. Clear aligner trays use a custom fit to correct misaligned teeth, but sometimes they need some help. That’s where aligner attachments come in.

Also referred to as “bumps” or “buttons,” clean aligner attachments are subtle, tooth-colored grips that help the aligner generate enough force to move the teeth. Some teeth need additional help moving, so supplemental attachments are installed onto certain teeth to provide more surface area for the aligners to hold on to—this gives the clear aligner more force.

How Are Aligner Attachments Used?

Patients using teeth aligners will receive a series of plastic aligner trays. The gradual progression of the teeth is forecasted and molded into an aligner tray. Patients will swap out a new aligner tray roughly every two weeks as the teeth make their way into the proper alignment. The aligner trays will “snap” onto the attachments so the buttons can anchor the tooth into position over time.

Are Teeth Aligner Attachments Beneficial?

For some people, clear teeth aligners alone are enough to guide the teeth into the correct alignment. The extra help provided by aligner attachments is helpful to correct issues related to spacing, bad bites, and overcrowding.

How Much Do Clear Teeth Aligners Cost?

Everyone will have a customized treatment plan with clear teeth aligners for their own needs. Depending on location, insurance benefits, and type of treatment, clear teeth aligners can cost somewhere between $1,200 and $8,000. In some instances, your dental professional may refer you to a specialist to address TMJ pain or TMD, which can add to the overall price of the treatment.

Clear aligners are becoming an increasingly popular practice for fixing misaligned teeth. They’re discreet and convenient, but knowing how clear aligners work to move teeth is important. Properly aligned teeth reduce the risk for bad bites, tooth decay, cavities, and broken teeth. And, of course, give you a brighter, healthier-looking smile!

Colgate is offering orthodontic aligners in the Dallas, Texas area  and expanding.  If you are interested, please visit to learn more.


Oral Care Center articles are reviewed by an oral health medical professional. This information is for educational purposes only. This content is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Always seek the advice of your dentist, physician or other qualified healthcare provider. 

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