Clear Aligners

You want straight teeth, right?  The new American standard of beauty for both women and men includes a nice, white, broad and beautiful smile.  Just look at the cover of any popular magazine….. all perfect smiles.  Dr. Michael Zerivitz, Of Deltona Smiles Dentistry in Deltona, FL knows the value of a great smile and can help you get yours 🙂 

Orthodontic treatment of crooked teeth and uneven smiles is one of the best ways to start your quest for a great smile.  For the past seventy-five years, the orthodontic community has relied on the traditional “braces and wires” to straighten and correct teeth.  In the past decade, we have seen a significant rise in the use of removable “clear aligners.”  These are devices that can perform 80% of the orthodontic cases we see to move and straighten teeth without the braces, bands, wires, rubber bands, or headgear.

Clear aligners are known by names like
Invisalign, Smile Direct, Clear Correct and many more.  The important thing for you to know is that all of these clear aligners can work in some cases, but not all cases.  Knowing when to use traditional braces, and when to use clear aligners is extremely important factor in the ultimate success of your treatment.

Here are some advantages of traditional braces:

  • Braces and wires are used to rotate severely crooked teeth and to correct overbite issues.
  • In addition to correcting crooked or rotated teeth, they can actually widen the jaws to make room for all of your natural teeth.
  • They don’t come off, so if you are forgetful about using the clear aligner, this solution will get the job done.
  • Just brush and floss. No need to keep track of which aligner that you should be wearing, so compliance is not an issue.
  • Best for more complicated orthodontic cases.
  • Slightly less problem of relapse when compared to aligner therapy. At the end of treatment, you will likely receive a “passive retainer” that is a clear plastic splint designed to hold your teeth in their new position.  Retainers are worn at night for years and they look like the “active aligners”.

Braces do have some disadvantages, such as:

  • Braces can be uncomfortable when the wires are changed, due to pressure to move the teeth.
  • More care must be taken to clean around the edges of the brackets and wires to prevent gum disease and tooth decay during the treatment phase.
  • Treatment time averages one to two years or longer.
  • If you are conscientious about your smile, the metal braces option may not be as appealing to you, especially if you deal with the public frequently.
  • Forget about eating sticky foods, candy, hard nuts and chewing ice. But those things are bad for your teeth anyway 🙂

Here are some advantages of clear aligners:

  • Clear aligners are removable. You can take them out to eat and can clean your teeth before inserting the aligners again.
  • If you have a big date or important photo session, you may remove the aligners for your best appearance. They are a much more esthetic option.
  • Clear aligner treatment time often can be slightly shorter than traditional braces, averaging 6 to 18 months because of the mechanics of how they move the teeth.
  • Aligners put a gentler pressure on the teeth to move when compared to braces, so you can have less discomfort during treatment.
  • The cost for clear aligners is about the same as with traditional braces, depending on the severity of the problem.

Here are some disadvantages of clear aligners:

  • Aligners are not good for every orthodontic situation. If you have rotated teeth (more than 30 degrees), impacted canines, severe bite problems, severely tilted molars, or narrow jaws you may need braces
  • Aligners require compliance as they must be worn all day and night… 22 hours per day. Of course, this is not a problem for the motivated patient who is ready for a great smile.  
  • If you are prone to losing things (aligners), you might consider braces since they are non-removable.
  • In many cases, your dentist will need to attach small “handles” to your teeth, to give the aligners more grip to help move the teeth into the best position. These attachments are removed by your dentist at the completion of therapy.

Whether you chose traditional braces or clear aligners, straighter teeth are not just about “looking good”. There are several studies that show people who have straighter teeth, tend to have significantly fewer cavities over their lifetime, due to the fact it is less likely to trap food and bacteria and it’s easier to clean around. There are systemic advantages to not having bacterial plaque building up on those “hard-to-reach” areas.

With so many options, it can be a little confusing. This is where having an experienced professional you can trust help guide you in your choices. We love helping our patients achieve beautiful smiles and gain back their self-confidence and self-esteem!

If you are in the Deltona area and looking for straighter teeth and a healthier smile, make sure your first stop is at Deltona Smiles Dentistry. Dr. Z is here to help you decide which treatment option is best for you.  So, don’t delay your quest for personal improvement.  When you greet the world with that award-winning smile, you will look and feel great! Give us a call today to schedule a complimentary consultation for your amazing new smile!

Let’s leave you with the lyrics to a famous “oldie” song:
“When you’re smiling, when you’re smiling, The whole world smiles with you… When you’re laughin’ when you’re laughin’, the sun comes shining through……”