If you need braces for straighter teeth, you may have more options than you realize. Instead of a mouthful of metal brackets and wires, your teen may benefit from a clear aligners orthodontic system. Clear aligners correct a variety of common orthodontic problems without the hassle of traditional braces.
At Touni Orthodontics in Sunnyvale, CA, Walied Touni, DDS, MSD, is an expert in clear aligners. Dr. Touni regularly customizes treatment plans for patients of all ages from teens to adults. Here we discuss five oral issues you didn’t know clear aligners could correct.
1. Crowded, crooked teeth
You may think clear aligners are for simple or minor orthodontic issues, and although that’s true, they can also correct a variety of more complex cases, including crowded, crooked teeth. Through a series of custom-made, clear, plastic aligners that fit securely over your top and bottom teeth, the clear aligners system slowly shifts your teeth into a straighter, less crowded position.
The aligners are easy to insert and take out for eating and brushing your teeth, too, so you can maintain a good oral hygiene routine during treatment.
2. Gapped teeth
That space between the two front teeth can become a food magnet and if not properly cared for, may lead to gum disease. If you have gaps between your teeth in which gum tissue is easily irritated, clear aligners can correct that problem.
As you wear the custom aligners 20-22 hours a day, teeth gently shift into place to eliminate gaps. The result is an overall straighter, more uniform smile and potentially healthier teeth and gums.
An overbite is when your upper front teeth protrude further out over your bottom teeth than they should. Most people have a small overbite, but if you have “buck teeth,” clear aligners can help. It’s important to correct a severe overbite to prevent your teeth from wearing down unevenly or causing jaw pain.
As the term implies, an underbite is the opposite of an overbite. If you have an underbite, it means when they close their mouth, their lower front teeth protrude too far forward. Underbites can make it hard to chew or speak properly and cause unnecessary wear-and-tear on teeth.
In severe underbite cases, there’s a problem with the position of the lower jaw being too far forward. But clear aligners can fix some less severe cases of underbites. Dr. Touni assesses the jaw position as part of your clear aligners consultation, so he can determine the best course of treatment.
When some of the upper teeth overlap the lower teeth and vice-versa, it’s called a crossbite. The teeth don’t naturally close together in a way that allows the top teeth to gently rest in position over the bottom teeth. Like overbites and underbites, crossbites can cause unnecessary wear on overlapping teeth. In some cases, you can even chip a tooth because of the way teeth rub against each other.
Clear aligners can reposition teeth so they fit together more evenly. Correcting a crossbite can also help you have healthier teeth and gums with fewer complicated dental issues in the future.
An added bonus: shorter treatment times
Clear aligners come with a discreet blue dot on the outside of the aligners. This blue indicator allows you to be able to see how long you are wearing the aligners so they can effectively reposition teeth in the estimated timeframe. When you wear your aligners the required amount of time each day, treatment often takes just 12-18 months. This may be up to two times faster than traditional metal braces!
If you’ve been putting off getting braces because of the hassle of extra orthodontic visits, avoiding certain foods during treatment, or simply to avoid a mouth full of metal, clear aligners can remedy your concerns. The clear aligning system is the most discreet way to transform the most common orthodontic problems for a more beautiful smile at nearly any age.
Learn more about the numerous benefits of clear aligners by calling our friendly office staff at 408-412-5249.