By Dr Elissa Freer
One of the latest trends in orthodontics involves dental companies placing new products in the digital space. In addition to this, the consumer demand for clear aligner treatments has grown substantially in recent times. This is in part due to companies marketing directly to the public, an improvement in the aesthetics of orthodontic appliances such as aligners and also due to increased social awareness and accessibility of orthodontic treatment. A 2020 survey of Australian orthodontists reported that 92% of respondents used aligner treatments for some of their patients. This is great news if you want clear aligners as there is no one better qualified to do the treatment for you than a specialist.
What are clear aligners? They are clear thermoformed plastic aligners that cover many or all of the teeth and are designed to reposition teeth gradually to make them straight. The market leaders in this technology utilize sophisticated software which allows for a diagnostic set-up of the teeth to be visualized prior to commencing treatment. This is great for you, the patient, to be involved in the treatment planning alternatives before treatment has started. Some other advantages of aligner treatments include that are they are not noticeable to others (great aesthetics), they make cleaning your teeth easier including being able to floss, which means healthier gums. They are more comfortable than braces and there are less appointments required and virtually no emergencies with them. Systematic reviews of dental literature conclude that aligners are an alternative option to conventional braces in the correction of mild to moderate alignment issues. Braces are likely to be a better option if the malocclusion is complicated or involves severe crowding and bite problems. Aligner treatments are not necessarily more expensive than conventional braces and the cost depends on the complexity of the treatment.
If you are interested in having an aligner treatment for your teeth, the staff at Brisbane Orthodontics are more than happy to see you for a consultation to advise if this is the best option for you and to give you an all-inclusive costing with different payment options.