Orthodontic Issues that Clear Aligners Can and Can’t Fix

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Clear aligners are a great alternative to metal braces because they offer many of the same benefits without the hassle. However, it cannot fix every orthodontic issue.

For example, if you have severely crooked teeth, clear aligners probably won’t be enough to correct the problem. But if your teeth aren’t too far out of alignment and some minor adjustments are needed to straighten them up, then clear aligners may work just fine.

This blog post will cover the orthodontic issues that can and can’t be fixed by clear aligners. 

How Do Clear Aligners Work?

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Aligners can be a great way to straighten teeth without having braces. But, like any other type of treatment for the mouth, it takes discipline and commitment from patients to get desired results. Clear aligners have to be worn for at least 20 to 22 hours per day. The aligner must be taken out when eating or brushing teeth, but progress will take much longer than expected if you neglect this task during the treatment.

  • Initial consultation – When it comes to teeth, aligners are one of the most popular orthodontic treatments, but not everyone is eligible. To find out if you’re a candidate to straighten your teeth with an aligner, book an appointment, and they will examine your mouth through x-rays and digital scans before determining eligibility based on their assessment of how much work needs to be done to correct any problems with alignment.
  • A custom treatment plan – To ensure a precise alignment, your dentist starts by taking 3D scans of the mouth and inputting them into an advanced software system. The information is then sent off-site, where it’s fabricated from BPA-free thermoplastic to create custom made aligners for teeth straightening.
  • Receiving your clear aligners – As soon as your trays are ready, you meet with a dental professional to have them fitted for the appropriate correction. You then head home and put on the tray that you’ll need to wear at least 20 to 22 hours per day without exception. It can be removed when eating, drinking, and brushing your teeth. Trays are changed every one to two weeks depending on what kind of correction is required but make sure not to miss any days either because if they’re worn too little, this device won’t be effective.
  • Dental visit every six weeks – Seeing a dentist every six weeks is the best way to ensure your teeth are healthy and cavity-free. The dentist will check for plaque and tartar buildup, leading to cavities if not treated in time. Additionally, make sure you always perfectly clean your trays since these may change colour or become scratched with use over an extended period without proper care.

Learn More: How Do Clear Aligner Straighten Teeth?

Benefits of Clear Aligners

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  • They’re invisible – We all know how hard it is to find a smile when you don’t feel good about yourself. Clear aligners can help self-conscious teens have more opportunities to smile, leading to higher levels of confidence. For adults who work with people regularly or their profession requires an approachable appearance, clear aligners will help keep that friendly attitude while still looking great.
  • They’re removable – Aligners are an innovative alternative to traditional braces, making it easier than ever for you to enjoy your favorite foods without any discomfort. They can be removed whenever you eat or drink. They come with a handy carrying case that allows you to have your aligners on hand at all times.
  • They make proper dental hygiene easier – Clear aligners are an excellent option for those who want to make sure they have the best oral health possible. They’re removable, so it’s easy to clean all areas of your mouth, including gum tissue that may not otherwise be accessible when you wear metal braces.

Learn More: Advantages and Disadvantages of Clear Aligners

Issues clear aligners can fix

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  • Crooked Teeth – The only time braces are needed is when the teeth have a severe degree of misalignment. But, if you simply want a little help making your smile look perfect, then clear aligners may be the right option for you!
  • Underbite – An underbite is a serious condition where the bottom teeth are in front of your top teeth, causing them to wear quickly. Furthermore, it also leads to speech difficulty.

Clear aligners are an effective way of gently realigning your lower teeth and move them back so that they naturally sit behind the front ones. In extreme cases, braces might need to be combined with clear aligners for treatment to work correctly. 

  • Overbite – Overbite is a common condition wherein the top teeth overlap with your bottom teeth. Most people have at least a little bit of this, but it can be painful and lead to jaw problems if you have an extreme case. Your dentist should diagnose whether or not you are suffering from overbite by measuring how severe they are; 5% – 25% is ideal for an overbite.

A clear aligner is an excellent option for those with mild to moderate orthodontic needs. It can be used by patients who have a less severe overbite and may last up to 2 years of treatment before the teeth are permanently stabilized in their new placement. When completed, it’s important to wear the retainers so teeth don’t shift back out of place and cause more problems. 

  • Gaps in Teeth – The gap between your teeth can be detrimental to your dental health and look unappealing. When there is space between the pearly whites, food gets stuck, leading to cavities or gum disease.

The clear aligners can close these gaps, so you look your best while experiencing improved oral health at the same time. It is also worth noting that this process has limitations as to how much space needs to be closed to work effectively.

  • Crossbite – A crossbite is when some of the lower teeth are in front of some of the top tooth, and it can be either a back or frontal crossbite, depending on which ones are involved. A jaw may compensate for this issue by moving one side with possible permanent changes that could occur, such as facial structure and alignment, if not treated early enough. Crossbites also lead to gum problems because, if left untreated, they will only worsen over time due to more pressure being placed on those areas.

It’s a good thing that clear aligners have been used successfully to fix crossbite with its innovative tooth-shifting process, so now more people can enjoy the benefits of this treatment.

  • Open Bite – An open bite is a condition where the top row of teeth does not touch the bottom row perfectly when one closes his/her jaw. This condition can be difficult to live with. It often leads to uneven wear on teeth and difficulty biting into food properly, making chewing even more challenging than it already is.

 Clear aligners can help people fix an open bite by moving the upper and lower teeth so that when they close, the alignment is correct.

  • Crowded Teeth – When your jaw isn’t big enough to fit all of your teeth, they can overlap and twist awkwardly. It is known as crowding. In this case, it can lead to tooth decay, and gum disease as bacteria and food get trapped between teeth that are too close together.

 Clear aligners are an innovative way to create space between teeth and hold them into their desired position. The process can be customized for different cases, depending on the severity of the situation or how much assistance a person needs with treatment.

Learn More: Are Clear Aligners As Effective As Traditional Braces?

Issues Clear Aligners Can’t Fix.

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  • Teeth shape – If you have short, round and peg-shaped teeth or too pointed, the aligner may not be able to get a good grip on your teeth. It means it isn’t effective at moving your teeth into position.
  • Teeth position – When a mouth is overcrowded, it’s not uncommon for teeth to shift into an alternate position. If the rotation exceeds 20 degrees with molars or canines, clear aligners won’t move them in the right direction. 

In some cases, teeth can often tilt forward or back to fit, and when the tooth’s angle is more than 45 degrees, clear aligners will not be able to align it correctly into place. 

  • Large gaps between teeth – When it comes to closing teeth gaps, the clear aligners have limitations. It can reliably close only up to 6mm of space per arch (top or bottom).
  • Intrusion and Extrusion – Orthodonticscan move teeth into position so that the height of all your teeth is the same. It can raise and lower the position of teeth in the jawbone. Braces have much more force to do this than clear aligners, which only have limited movement in front teeth and almost no movement on back ones.
  • Midline Movements – Patients with front teeth that do not match their midline can now take advantage of the wonders of clear aligners, which is a system designed to correct discrepancies by 2mm to the right or the left per arch. However, if it is more than that, it would require braces.
  • Previous dental work – Some prior dental work can inhibit patients from using the clear aligner. Dental bridges, porcelain veneers, or crowns may impede a patient’s ability to use attachments if using clear aligners because they cannot bond to that surface.

Learn More: Cost Of Clear Aligners Definitive Guide 2021

Final Thoughts

Clear aligners are an excellent option for some orthodontic issues, but not all. If you’re considering clear aligners to fix orthodontic issues, it may be helpful for you to know what problems they can and cannot fix.   

Find out if it can help you with your specific dental needs by contacting our team of experts at Byford Smiles. We want to be the best partner in helping you achieve and maintain a healthy and beautiful smile. If you have any questions, please contact us today at 08 9532 0247 to answer them and provide more information on how this treatment works. Our dentists will even give an estimate of what the costs would be during the free consultation.

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