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How Do Dental Aligners Work?

By Apollo 24|7, Published on- 16 February 2023, Updated on - 18 March 2023

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While some people feel embarrassed of their crooked or misaligned teeth, for most of them it can be a reason for numerous dental health issues and verbal impairment. This is where dental aligners come in for a rescue. Clear dental aligners have become quite popular amongst people who wish to straighten their teeth painlessly. Offering a number of advantages over conventional braces, clear dental aligners are much more comfortable and easy to use. Read on to learn more about what dental aligners are and how they work. 

What Are Dental Aligners?

Teeth aligners are tight-fitting, clear mouthpieces that fit over your teeth. They are an excellent alternative to conventional metal braces as they are transparent, removable, and can be worn throughout the day and night. They are usually recommended to people looking to correct spacing issues, bite problems, and crowding of teeth. Dental aligners are designed to accomplish the same things as conventional braces in a much shorter treatment time, making them a preferred option for teeth straightening. 

How Do Dental Aligners Work?

Dental aligners work in the same way that traditional metal braces do. However, they don’t involve wires or metal brackets. Here’s how they work:

  • If you opt for getting your teeth straightened with dental aligners, your dentist or orthodontist will first scan your teeth to frame a 3D model. 
  • These scans will then be used to create moulds, which will further be used to design custom dental aligners for you.
  • A series of plastic mouthpieces will be created for your teeth according to the measurements collected by digital scans. 
  • These mouthpieces will put gentle yet continuous pressure on your teeth to gradually move them into the proper position, improving your dental alignment. 
  • If required, your orthodontist or dentist may place clear, small attachments (tooth coloured) on the teeth to connect with your dental aligners. This provides your aligners with extra strength to reposition your teeth to the desired alignment.
  • Each set of these mouthpieces needs to be worn for a couple of weeks before being replaced by a new set that will move the teeth further.  

Are Dental Aligners Effective? 

Dental aligners can prove to be quite effective in straightening your teeth and giving you a beautiful smile as long as you strictly follow your dentist’s instructions and wear them as prescribed. Those looking to get their teeth straightened using these aligners should wear them for 22 hours every day during the entire course of their treatment.

Sometimes, when patients stop wearing their dental aligners altogether or do not keep them on for an appropriate period of time, dental issues can worsen and become even more challenging to treat than they were before. 

Earlier, dental aligners were only helpful in correcting milder cases of teeth crowding. However, their scope of application has expanded quite a lot in recent years. While some conditions may only be corrected through oral surgery, clear aligners can fix several types of cases of misaligned teeth. Once done with their dental aligner treatment, patients should wear a retainer to prevent their teeth from going back to the way they were before treatment. A retainer is quite an important part of all teeth straightening treatments. If you need more information, 

Consult Apollo's Dental Expert

FAQs

Q. How long does it take for aligners to move teeth?

The duration of treatment varies from person to person. On average, it can take anywhere from 6 to 12 months for the teeth to reposition.

Q. Do teeth aligners really work?

Yes, dental aligners have proven to be quite helpful in straightening teeth. They can be very effective as long as you stick to your dentist’s advice. 

Q. Are aligners better than braces?

If you wish to straighten your teeth without the use of wires and metal brackets, then you must go for aligners. Both metal braces and aligners work in a similar manner but the latter is aesthetically pleasant and removable.

Q. Can aligners be removed at any time?

Yes, dental aligners can be removed any time you want.

Consult Apollo's Dental Expert

 

Medically reviewed by Dr Sonia Bhatt.

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