If you aren't happy with the alignment of your teeth, then you may be thinking about having braces. To save money and time, you may be considering using mail-order braces rather than seeing an orthodontist. This way, you sign up to a mail-order service and use a mould to take impressions of your teeth. The company then makes braces based on these impressions and sends them to you to wear. Typically, this service works with removable rather than permanent braces.
While mail-order braces may look like an easier option than seeing an orthodontist, this isn't something you should enter into lightly. Why not?
Making Impressions Takes Skill
The braces the mail-order company makes for you are based on impressions you take yourself. While biting down into a mould seems easy enough, this is actually a complex process. If you don't use the mould correctly, then the impressions you send to the company may not give a completely accurate picture of your teeth. If you move when you're making the impressions or bite down at the wrong time or wrong angle, then your braces won't fit your teeth correctly.
The braces you're then sent might not fit comfortably. If they don't fit right, then they won't guide your teeth accurately into straighter positions. They could even make things worse rather than better.
Bracing Is an Ongoing Process
Even if your mail-order braces fit, you don't have any guarantees you'll get straighter teeth. You may have complicated underlying issues with your teeth that you and the mail-order company can't see from an impression alone.
Plus, as your teeth shift position, your orthodontic needs often change as well. This is one of the reasons why orthodontists see patients regularly during treatment. If your teeth move too slowly, too quickly or in the wrong ways, then your orthodontist adjusts your braces to keep your treatment on track. You can't do this with mail-order braces. Again, not knowing when things are going wrong could make your teeth look worse instead of better.
Mail-order braces don't guarantee you straighter teeth. They could actually compromise your teeth and gums. If things go wrong, then you could end up with more serious dental issues and a larger bill to fix your teeth.
If you want to straighten your teeth, it makes more sense to stick with professional treatment. An orthodontist can diagnose your problem, work out the best bracing plan and monitor your treatment to make sure it works effectively.
As a mum, I know how essential sport can be to children's development. Through team sports like soccer, kids learn persistence, sportsmanship and the value of supporting their team members. However, all that learning carries some risk as well, and a stray elbow or a ball to the face can result in oral injuries. I have been the mum rushing to the emergency room with a precious permanent tooth sitting in a cup of milk. Admittedly, at the time, I wasn't even sure if the cup of milk was the right solution. As a parent, you will face those situations, and I'm here to make sure you know what to do when they pop up. With this blog, let's explore children's dentistry and sports injuries together... I want you to have the info you need to stay cool, calm and collected, regardless of how many teeth are on the pitch.