First things first: no one wants a bad-looking smile. Everyone wants their teeth to look straight and healthy! However, not everyone needs braces. If you have an underdeveloped palate, limited overcrowding or malocclusion, you might be able to fix your smile without braces.
How to Straighten Teeth Without Braces
Brands like Smile Direct and Invisalign have totally shaken up the orthodontics industry for the better. You used to have to go to your orthodontist for your first fitting and installation of regular braces. Depending on the severity of your particular case, you could have to visit the orthodontist as much as once a week to get your traditional braces adjusted.
With the new technology that these other brands have, all of that effort is a thing of the past. Either book a 3D scan in our SmileShop or get an at-home kit sent to you. A licensed dentist or orthodontist will review your smile plan and guide your new smile remotely from beginning to end. You have the option to either book a 3D scan from your doctor or get an at-home kit sent to you. A licensed dentist or orthodontist will review your smile plan and guide your new smile remotely from beginning to end. Everyone’s gum-line is different, so each aligner is individually trimmed for your teeth and gums. In stead of having to go to get adjusted, these companies send you new molds to track your improvement and ship new aligners right to your front door.
Orthodontists often suggest palatal expanders for children with mouths too narrow for their adult teeth. The expander is typically held in place by dental cement and is placed so that it applies pressure on both sides of the mouth. The expander has a mechanism that can be turned by the orthodontist to apply more pressure. Over visits with the orthodontist, the expander is gradually widened, causing the mouth to become wide enough to accommodate eventual adult teeth.
If your child is suffering from a narrow palate, consider speaking with their orthodontist about expanders. It’s possible to avoid braces altogether with the aid of an expander!
In the event of limited overcrowding of the mouth, retainers can be used to correct the issue. Orthodontists will often suggest retainers for less extreme conditions, as they have a number of benefits for certain patients. While fixed retainers are similar to braces, Hawley retainers are removable. Removable retainers are great for special occasions or temporary relief while still correcting crooked teeth or misaligned bite.
If you opt for a removable retainer, the main risk is losing it. Retainers are made from a dental impression and specifically made for one patient. As such, they are expensive to replace. Make sure any children with retainers are aware of how expensive they are and to not misplace them.
Appliances for Malocclusion
Malocclusion, or an out-of-alignment bite, can be very discomforting. Those with malocclusion can often be helped by an orthodontist’s appliance, however. Appliances that orthodontists use to correct bite often look a bit extreme but are noted for how successful they are. Headgear used to correct malocclusion can look a bit goofy, but it’s well-worth the benefits of correcting a child’s bite!
Children with headgear are often mocked by classmates, however, so orthodontists may have other treatments in mind that are more discreet. In such cases, an orthodontist can consult with parents over how best to proceed.