Perhaps you’ve been looking at your smile in the mirror and have asked yourself, “Should I get Invisalign? Or could I save a few bucks by making my own braces?” Believe it or not, “do-it-yourself” braces have been growing in popularity, and many patients don’t realize how dangerous they can really be. Here’s 6 reasons why you should leave your orthodontic treatment to the professionals.
1. Gum Infection
Homemade braces have been made out of a variety of materials, including superglue, rubber bands, bracelet beads for making jewelry, and paper clips. These are not medical grade supplies, and they have not been sterilized; they can injure your gums and stop them from healing properly, making it easy to develop an infection. A gum infection can spread throughout the body, damaging the bones and even threatening your life.
2. Tooth Loss
If your braces haven’t been installed by a professional, they could end up being too tight and restricting the blood flow that your teeth need to stay healthy. As a result, the tooth roots could easily be destroyed; instead of straightening your teeth, you could end up losing them altogether!
3. Results That Don’t Last
Even if you do end up successfully moving your teeth, the results aren’t likely to last. Braces work by making small changes to the position of the teeth over a long period of time; that’s why they need to be adjusted periodically. If you try to make a quick adjustment, there’s a good chance that your teeth will just shift back to their original position once you remove your braces.
4. Speech Impediments and Chewing Problems
Braces affect the entire mouth; you could end up moving teeth that you never intended to move. That could affect the way your upper and lower jaw fit together, making it more difficult to speak properly. In the worst-case scenario, you could develop apraxia of speech, a condition where it will take a lot more effort to say certain words. You might also lose the ability to chew correctly.
5. Emotional Changes
Patients who end up damaging their smiles with homemade braces have ben shown to suffer from mood swings, confusion, avoidance or lack of interest in activities, insomnia, and depression.
6. Long Term Cost
Ironically, homemade braces might ultimately end up being more expensive than professional ones! If you damage your smile, you’ll likely end up paying for costly, complex procedures (such as surgery to remove an infection or correct bone loss) for a long time.
To avoid the above issues, it’s always best to go to ask a professional for orthodontic options. Invisalign is a popular choice; it’s much less noticeable than braces, and it’ll let you eat whatever you want; most importantly, though, it’s a safe, FDA-approved treatment overseen by an experienced dentist from beginning to end!
About the Practice
At Monarch Dentistry in Vienna, Dr. Neil Flenniken and Dr. Suzan Rismani-Flenniken can assist patients who speak a wide variety of languages, including Mandarin Chinese, Russian, Persian and French. For patients who want to straighten their smiles while still looking professional, they offer safe, effective Invisalign treatment. To schedule an appointment, visit their website or call (703) 714-7374.