Metal braces are becoming a thing of the past, and clear aligners are trailblazing the teeth straightening industry. Clear aligners are in high demand among teeth straightening patients. Ideal candidates include those with crowded teeth, gap teeth, open bite, crossbite, underbite, or overbite. These days the most difficult decision is choosing between Invisalign treatment at your local orthodontist office or at-home kits from a teledentistry company. Continue reading to learn more about both options.
Invisalign is the world’s most advanced clear aligner. After more than 20 years of research, it’s the largest 3D printing operation in the world. Invisalign treatment involves in-person appointments with your orthodontist to ensure your most beautiful smile gets revealed comfortably and quickly.
Once your orthodontist approves the treatment and creates your Invisalign clear aligners, your treatment begins. Your orthodontist will teach you how to use and care for your aligners as well as give helpful tips to successfully using your Invisalign treatment. Plus they are there for you every step of the way in case you have questions or experience unforeseen pain.
- Custom made
- Easy to use
- Easy to clean
- Access to your orthodontist
- Easy to remove
- Fewer food restrictions compared to using metal braces
- One-on-one attention in case of an emergency
- Boosted self-esteem and self-confidence
- Scheduling regular appointments to monitor your progress
Teledentistry companies cater to patients that have busy schedules or fear dentist offices. Popular teledentistry companies include Smile Direct Club, Candid, Byte, Smile Love, Snap Correct, and Easy Smile. Patients that choose teledentistry to provide their teeth straightening treatment receive an at-home kit and instructions on how to take their own teeth molds then mail it to the teledentistry company. Once the company receives the mold, a dentist professional determines if the person is an ideal candidate and creates a clear aligner treatment that gets mailed to the patient’s house.
- Custom made aligners
- Easy to use
- Easy to clean
- Hardly any food restrictions
- Improved self-confidence
- No in-person orthodontic care
- No direct one-on-one attention during an emergency
The Difference Between Local Orthodontists and Teledentistry
As a patient of a local orthodontist that prescribes Invisalign, you are ensured overall oral health care. Gum infections, bacteria buildup, tartar buildup, and discomfort are all addressed and cared for immediately and in-person.
Teledentistry patients are often assigned a remote dentist or dental care professional that provides advice and often recommends to visit a local emergency oral health care facility during an emergency. Otherwise, the patient is responsible for their entire treatment from taking their own molds to ordering their retainers after treatment has been completed.
Major Law Suits against Teledentistry
Lawsuits against the teledentistry industry have been building over the years. The lawsuits range from civil suits from patients that had a bad experience to the American Dental Association filing lawsuits against teledentistry for not adhering to prescription laws. Here are a few ongoing lawsuits.
- For several years the American Association of Orthodontists has been trying to encourage states throughout the country to restrict teledentistry services. In April 2017, the ADA filed complaints alleging that teledentistry was breaking laws governing the practice of dentistry in 36 states.
- The New Jersey Dental Association lodged complaints against the teledentistry industry by filing a civil complaint in the Superior Court of New Jersey. The complaint alleged that the teledentistry industry “engages in the unlawful practice of dentistry in this state.”
- In July 2019, The American Dental Association filed a complaint with the FTC and FDA against the teledentistry industry by sending a complaint letter to the Federal Trade Commission’s Bureau of Consumer Protection regarding the teledentistry industries marketing and sales tactics of plastic teeth aligners.
In the long run, many patients realize that although teledentistry options are convenient, some patients are experiencing serious issues that can’t be detected with the at-home teeth mold kit. Many patients end up at their local orthodontist office, begging for help. Numerous patients have mentioned that paying a few extra dollars to get in-person Invisalign treatment is worth it to have one-on-one attention and monitoring of the process.
Best Option to Straighten Your Teeth
Visiting your local orthodontist is the best option recommended for patients who want to straighten their teeth as painless, safe and quick as possible.
Straightening your teeth to improve your smile and overall oral health should not be taken lightly. If you need help deciding which option is best for you, consult with an experienced and licensed orthodontist like Dr. Jacquie Smiles.