The internet has made it easy and convenient to get nearly anything you want with the touch of a button. This trend is gaining popularity in the orthodontic world, with direct-to-consumer aligners making DIY treatment seem quick and easy. But are mail-ordered orthodontics worth it? Central Massachusetts Orthodontics explores five things you won’t get with mail-order orthodontics and why in-person treatment is the best option for your smile.
What are mail-ordered aligners? How do they work?
Mail-order aligners claim lower prices and more convenience since there are no trips to the orthodontist for checkups and adjustments. We understand how mail-ordering orthodontic treatment can seem appealing, but you might be surprised that most orthodontists and dentists won’t recommend this process.
The companies that offer clear aligners through the mail are a form of “online orthodontics.” Instead of visiting an orthodontic office for an in-person exam, the treatment process is entirely virtual.
You’ll apply to the company of your choice and, upon approval, have a kit sent to your home to make a 3-D mold of your teeth. A technician or dentist will then use that mold to create a series of clear aligners that will slowly move your teeth into straighter positions.
This may seem relatively straightforward, but anyone considering these companies should proceed cautiously. Several risks and concerns are associated with this kind of care, and some can impact your oral health. Here are some benefits of choosing a respected orthodontic practice over mail-order companies!
Lower Cost and Quicker Results
This is the biggest misconception about mail-ordered aligners. While mail-order options may seem quick and inexpensive, the potential risks can cost you more in the long run since you won’t have the supervised care that a trained orthodontist provides.
When you choose a trained orthodontist, you’ll have access to the best orthodontic options for your unique needs. Dr. Giarrusso and Dr. Livanos will give you personalized care to ensure the best treatment and results for your smile.
Here at Central Mass Orthodontics, we also make orthodontic treatment affordable. We offer a variety of patient-specific payment plans and accept most orthodontic dental insurances to provide outstanding value for a reasonable price.
In-Person Clinical Exam
The best way to get the desired results is to evaluate your starting point thoroughly. During your initial examination, your orthodontist will examine the tissue and bone supporting your teeth using digital photographs, full mouth X-rays, and a digital scan that eliminates the need for goopy impressions.
This detailed information helps us determine the best orthodontic appliance for your treatment and avoid complications later from cavities, gum disease, and other related problems not picked up in impressions or photos.
With mail-order aligners, the first step is receiving your in-home impression kit. Once you mail the impression back, a dentist or technician will review it and decide if you are a good candidate for clear aligners.
Eligibility is based on your current tooth alignment and does not factor in many essential components of the orthodontic process. Without considering all the variables, you may have subpar results, which could cost you more time and money.
Customized Treatment Plans
Your teeth and gums should be in good condition before attempting tooth movement to avoid unexpected problems. While clear aligners are an excellent option for many patients, they aren’t for everyone. Some cases are much more severe or require specific treatments before starting the movement of your teeth. In cases where more precise or complicated movements are necessary, you may save time and money by opting for traditional metal or clear braces.
At Central Mass Orthodontics, we consider your needs and goals when creating your treatment plan. We want to ensure that our treatment plan will make the best use of your time and goals while utilizing our expertise in orthodontic care. We use the information from your in-office consultation and the data from your imaging to determine what will fit your lifestyle with the best results.
Supervision During Treatment
During treatment, your teeth may move slower or faster than we anticipate, things can come up that require minor adjustments, or we may need to modify your treatment plan. This is why having regular check-ins with our expert team is crucial during your aligner process.
When you choose mail-order aligners, you’ll get a treatment timeline to follow. This timeline is based on your initial teeth impressions and what should happen over time but does not account for any deviations that may pop up unexpectedly. This hands-off calendar approach can cause severe damage to your teeth, gums, and jaw.
Treatment for Other Orthodontic Issues
Many orthodontic issues lie below the gum line and with the jaw, where messy impressions and cell phone images can’t capture the details. Mail-ordered aligners can’t treat these issues and can make the issue worse.
Knowing your specific orthodontic concerns ahead of time is more effective to get the best possible outcome. Dr. Giarrusso and Dr. Livanos can assess your condition throughout the process, allowing any adjustment to your treatment plan to get your perfect smile.
Trust Your Smile Transformation to Central Massachusetts Orthodontics
You wouldn’t go on a road trip without researching the best route to get you there that aligns with your needs and goal. Don’t start your orthodontic treatment without the same consideration!
Our expert team at Central Mass Orthodontics takes pride in making your experience pleasant and personalized, from the initial consultation to your final checkup. If you are wondering what the best route to your perfect smile is, schedule your consultation with Dr. Giarrusso or Dr. Livanos in Worcester, Auburn, or Spencer, and we’ll help you navigate this journey with confidence.