Just because you have a lovely straight smile now, that does not mean a few years from hence there may not be a crooked tooth or two sitting pride of place along your gum line. This is because as we get older our teeth can naturally grow, twist and turn in places to become crooked or slightly off kilter from their neighbours.
To get around this problem a dentist, as an example, may use a custom moulded clear brace to gently straighten out those troublesome teeth. Here’s how this simple appliance may be worth checking out if you’re starting to worry about a particular crooked tooth.
What are clear braces?
It’s fairly easy to explain this treatment as it’s essentially a small see-through plastic brace that your dentist will instruct you to wear for a set period of time to realign your teeth. The aligners are made from a transparent material to render them almost invisible and they are custom made to fit your specific requirements.
The goal of the brace is to slowly realign your crooked teeth through the use of a gentle amount of pressure. This is directed upon specific spots of your mouth and over time any misaligned teeth should start to rotate back to a more neater position.
What does it involve?
As we mentioned previously, the braces are custom moulded and this is achieved through an almost science fiction sounding scanning process. Using what’s known as an ‘itero machine’, a dentist will use lasers or LEDs depending on the type of machine, to scan and measure your entire upper or lower gum line.
This data is then translated into a 3D image on a computer screen that can then be shaped and changed with specialised software to show you how your smile will be straightened out. It’s unique as this is one of those rare times where you can see the end result of a dental treatment before you go through with it.
Is the procedure going to be painful?
One of the most common questions fielded to dental staff by patients is whether a treatment is going to be painful. With the braces there may be some discomfort involved, but that’s usually after you have been wearing the aligner for a few days. Patients have described an uncomfortable feeling of ‘pressure’ on their teeth, but this can be countered with shop bought painkillers.
The actual procedure itself is non-invasive and doesn’t involve any dental goop as your teeth are only scanned.
How to look after the brace
After the fitting patients have to keep the brace clean to make sure that it can do its job of realigning your teeth correctly. General maintenance of the guard is incredibly easy as all that’s required is a light brushing with an appropriate cleaning solution every other day. Regular cleaning helps to reduce staining, as well as kill any harmful bacteria that may be lurking on the brace.
These are just a few interesting facts about clear braces, to learn more about this unique treatment offered by dentists or to schedule your own fitting, then just contact your local practice.