The Hidden Perils of Mail Order Orthodontics
In today’s digital age, residents of Perth, WA and all around Australia are taking full advantage of the convenience provided by online services. Unfortunately, this move to digital has also made its way into dentistry, with some services now promoting “orthodontics in a box” in place of a traditional office visit. For Dr Camelia Furlan at Dentique Dental Spa, this is a concerning trend that could result in serious consequences for patients.
What are Mail Order Orthodontics?
Recently, ‘direct to consumer’ companies have begun offering mail order orthodontics such as aligners, mailing an ‘at home impression kit’ which is sent back to a lab. From that mould, they will create aligners and send them back to the customer for use. The customer then wears the clear aligners for the prescribed amount of time, replacing them with new ones that arrive in the post on regular intervals.
The Dangers of Mail Order Orthodontics
Although this might seem like a fast, convenient and effective way to skip the dentist chair, it is not without some significant and sometimes serious risks.
No Comprehensive Exam
Regular exams go well beyond just examining your teeth. Dentists are trained to look for tissue abnormalities, early signs of cancer, gum disease, and a whole host of other conditions that can present in the head, neck and oral cavity.
Lack of Supervision As Your Progress
Orthodontic treatment requires regular follow-ups to evaluate the effectiveness and progression of the treatment, making minor adjustments along the way to ensure the outcome exceeds the patient’s expectations. Small errors along the way can cause serious misalignment and may not be caught by ‘mail order’ options.
Risk of Damage, Irritation, Infection from Poorly Made Clear Aligners
Materials used in mail order aligners may not meet proper regulatory standards and may not be made in a certified dental/medical lab. This can cause anything from minor irritation, to infection and damage to teeth.
Poor Measurements Can Lead to Worse Outcomes
Imprecise measurements from a simple mould can result in the patient receiving aligners that may end up doing more harm than good. An Invisalign trained dentist or orthodontist, by contrast, uses a combination of industry-leading technology, imaging and best practices to ensure every set of aligners is custom-tailored to that patient’s teeth and goals.
Not Everyone Should Use Clear Aligners
Although aligners can be a wonderful tool to correct misaligned teeth, they are not advisable for everyone. The field of orthodontics covers a broad range of treatment options that may be better suited to your unique situation. Something you wouldn’t be able to find out from an ‘at home kit’.
Don’t Risk Your Health and Your Teeth On a Mail Order Orthodontic Treatment
Call or message our office and connect with our family-friendly team of caring and compassionate dental professionals who will treat you like family. We take great pride in helping you look and feel your very best, while improving your oral health and well-being so you can enjoy your pearly whites for decades to come.