When it comes to straightening crooked teeth and addressing common malocclusion concerns, orthodontics is often the most suitable method of treatment. Silver Spring dentists, Dr. Dechter and Dr. Moy, will recommend orthodontics for children and adult patients when appropriate to treat a range of problems. We can improve both aesthetic and structural dental issues with orthodontics near you.
Invisible braces or clear aligners are the perfect option for teens and adults who have mild to moderate orthodontic concerns. Clear aligners can correct issues such as:
- Crowding of teeth, spacing issues
- Gaps between teeth
We provide ClearCorrect® and MTM® clear aligner systems to straighten teeth in less time than it takes using traditional braces. All of our orthodontic treatments have minimal discomfort and little to no dietary restrictions. Our dentists will work with you to determine the best option for your needs. After a thorough evaluation, we will create your personalized treatment plan to address all of your concerns.
Invisible braces and clear aligners offer several key benefits:
- Discreet treatment: Especially for patients who do not want the embarrassment of metal braces.
- Easily removable: You can remove the aligners to enjoy your favorite foods and maintain your dental health with proper tooth brushing and flossing.
- Shorter treatment times: Most patients complete their treatment in less than a year!
- Comfort and convenience: The material does not irritate the soft tissues of your mouth. You can easily transport aligners when traveling.
ClearCorrect® vs. MTM®
Both of these crooked teeth treatment options provide a clear aligner system that will help you attain straighter teeth. Although, the severity of your oral health needs and cosmetic goals will play a role in what we recommend for you.
MTM, short for Minor Tooth Movement, provides quick and easy treatment for minor concerns. It is typically the perfect option for adult patients with concerns more cosmetic in nature, and without bite problems. It’s best to treat a single crooked tooth or just a couple of crooked teeth. Patients will usually complete treatment using MTM in about 3-6 months.
ClearCorrect can fix more malocclusion issues, such as dental crowding, unsightly tooth gaps, and spaces and small gaps in front teeth. However, the ClearCorrect system does not fix jaw misalignment issues, deep bite, or abnormal eruptions. You should visit an orthodontist for more severe and rare orthodontic issues.
How Clear Aligners Work
The process for orthodontic treatment using clear aligners in our Silver Spring dental office is quick and painless. We will begin with a consultation and discussion of your dental needs and cosmetic goals. After this consultation and a dental exam, we will put together a treatment plan that includes the best choice of aligners for you.
Next, we will take digital impressions of your mouth, and run other diagnostics for treatment planning. We will send your measurements to the aligner company where they will create them and send them to us. We will be able to accurately use your dental impressions to facilitate tooth movement as it changes throughout treatment.
Once we receive your first set of aligners, we will call you back into our office so that you can try them on. Our dentists will make sure they fit snugly before sending you on your way. The system will send you new sets every two weeks. You will change out the aligners about once every two weeks to slowly shift your teeth into the ideal alignment. You need to wear the aligners for around 22 hours each day to be completely effective. They should remain in your mouth unless you’re eating, drinking something that isn’t water, or brushing and flossing.
We require that you visit us every 6-8 weeks for checkups to monitor treatment progress. This will help us make adjustments if we need to, and ensure that you get the most successful and comfortable results. The removable aligners allow us to provide you with normal routine dentistry during treatment to maintain your dental health as well.
Clear Aligner Care
Once treatment is complete, we recommend that you wear a retainer nightly to keep your teeth in the proper position and avoid orthodontic relapse. We want your beautiful new smile to last as long as possible. Dr. Dechter and Dr. Moy will work with you to monitor any changes in the fit of your bite over time.
Proper care and maintenance of your clear aligners will ensure that they stay in good condition and continue to work effectively. First, wash your hands with soap and water before placing and removing your aligners. This is important so that you don’t accidentally spread bacteria from your hands to your mouth and the aligners. Also always store them in a protective case when not wearing them. This will help you remember where they are and not accidentally throw them away.
Brush your teeth before wearing the aligners to prevent food particles from damaging or staining the aligners. Do not use soap or toothpaste to clean your aligners because this can damage them. Rinse them with cold or lukewarm water before placing them in your mouth and after removing them to keep them clean. Do not use hot water because this can warp them and render them unusable.
Clear Aligners FAQs
Clear aligners are a great option for straightening teeth. They are easy to use, comfortable, and can give you a beautiful smile in as little as six months. But before you choose clear aligners, there may be some questions that you have about them. Here we will answer the most frequent questions about clear aligners, so that you can make an informed decision about your smile.
Do clear aligners take longer for treatment than traditional metal braces?
In most cases, clear aligners work faster than metal brackets and wires. The aligners will apply pressure to all the teeth at the same thus shifting them all together. Metal braces have brackets that focus on moving an individual tooth. However, each patient will have different needs and different total treatment time.
Do clear aligners stain?
Yes, clear aligners can stain. You must be aware of what you are consuming. However, the greatest benefit is you can remove them to eat or drink. If you do want to consume a staining food or drink, simply remove your aligner, and then brush your teeth after consuming the item and replacing your aligners.
Can I use clear aligners to straighten my bottom teeth?
Your dentist can use clear aligners to treat upper and lower teeth. They can realign teeth so that you bite become straight. Both clear aligners and metal braces serve the same purpose, so we can use them interchangeably on top and bottom teeth.
What can you not eat with clear aligners?
It is always best to avoid sticky or extremely hard foods and candy while undergoing any type of orthodontic treatment. This includes caramel, gum, nuts, popcorn, any type of hard candy, any type of chewy candy, etc. This is because they interfere with most types of orthodontic treatments. Also, even the best dental care efforts to remove them from teeth can leave behind bits and pieces.