How clear aligners benefit patients
Clear aligners, which are transparent plastic trays that are used to move teeth into a new position by exerting gentle pressure, offer numerous benefits to patients when compared to traditional metal braces. A cosmetic dentist can explain the benefits of clear aligners and help patients choose which teeth straightening treatment to use.
1. Not as noticeable
Unfortunately, wearing braces is often stigmatized by teenagers who fear being picked on and adults who associate wearing braces with being a teenager. Because clear aligners are transparent, it is difficult for other people to see that someone is wearing them. This aspect of clear aligners is appealing to many people who have anxiety about how other people may react to the appearance of traditional braces.
2. Easier to clean
The metal wires and brackets of traditional braces can easily trap food particles and make it difficult to get teeth clean. Clear aligners are removable, so patients can brush and floss the teeth normally and clean the aligners separately.
3. No food restrictions
Clear aligners can be removed before eating, which allows wearers to continue eating the same food as before. People who wear traditional braces are advised to avoid many types of foods:
- Sticky foods, such as gum or candy.
- Chewy foods, such as gumdrops or licorice.
- Hard foods, such as apples, carrots, and corn on the cob.
- Brittle foods, such as popcorn and nuts.
4. Positive lifestyle changes
Many people who use clear aligners have reported that having to remove and replace the aligners before and after snacking or smoking led to a decrease in those activities. Some people have even reported that this provided motivation to lose weight or quit smoking. Additionally, some patients were motivated to be more thorough and consistent with dental hygiene routines, leading to improved oral health.
5. Less interference with daily activities
Traditional braces can make eating, speaking, and intimacy more difficult for some people. As long as clear aligners are worn at least 20 to 22 hours per day, patients can remove the aligners long enough to complete a task that might otherwise be more difficult or uncomfortable with the aligners in place.
6. More comfortable
Traditional braces can sometimes rub against the inside of the lips and cheeks, causing discomfort. While some people do experience a sensation of tightness from aligners, most people do not experience the same level of discomfort as traditional braces wearers.
A cosmetic dentist may recommend clear aligners to patients who need teeth straightening because of the benefits of this treatment option. Before choosing a treatment option, the dentist can review the pros and cons of all of the available options and help the patient make a decision about which treatment to use.