Your Guide to At Home Teeth Straightening

Lady wearing orthodontic braces

As orthodontists, we are here to help find and deliver the best teeth straightening solution for each and every patient. We understand that crooked teeth and a misaligned smile can knock your confidence as well as making it more difficult to eat the foods you enjoy or brush your teeth effectively. Whilst there is a lot that we can do here at our practice to plan for and fit your braces, a lot of the hard work will be done by you at home. When we talk about at home teeth straightening, we don’t mean kits that you buy online and which may be damaging to your long term oral health, we mean the commitment to undertake the right care at home to ensure you get the results you want from your braces treatment. Let’s look at how this might work.

How Much of Your Teeth Straightening Will Happen at Home?

The amount of at home teeth straightening required will depend upon the braces treatment that has been recommended to you and that you ultimately choose. 

Fixed Braces

If you opt for fixed braces, whether they have metal or ceramic brackets, these appliances will be fitted in-practice and you’ll need to return periodically to review your progress and have the wires tightened as necessary to maintain the force needed to move your teeth into the desired position. You will still need to look after your teeth, gums and braces during your treatment, so the at home element of fixed braces will revolve around your oral care routine and being careful what you eat so as not to damage your braces.

Click here for our top tips on how to have good oral hygiene when wearing braces.

Removable Braces

If you choose invisible aligners, i.e. Invisalign, then teeth straightening at home takes on a new meaning. It will be up to you to remember to wear the aligners for at least 22 hours per day, to keep them clean in between eating and drinking, and to change them every couple of weeks, or as detailed by your orthodontist. Whilst initially you will be required to come into the practice to have detailed imagery and impressions of your mouth taken to design a set of aligners that will perfectly fit your teeth, after that a lot of the effort will be undertaken by you at home.

You’ll have new sets of aligners to wear every two weeks to gradually move your teeth into position, so it’s up to you to remember to change to each new aligner and to take excellent care of your braces, teeth and gums for the duration of your treatment. Poor oral health care during braces treatment can not only reduce the effectiveness of the teeth straightening, but it can also make you more susceptible to plaque, tooth decay and gum disease going forwards.

Why It Is Important You Seek Treatment From an Orthodontist

As a lot of the commitment will be on you, to care for your braces and teeth at home, you might wonder why you can’t just order a teeth straightening kit online, but this would be a big mistake.

Whilst these kits may offer a cheaper alternative, the fact that they are sent in the post means there is no option to try the aligners before you start treatment which often results in a poor fit. There is also the chance you might do long term damage to your teeth and gums, or waste your money on a treatment that is not suitable for you.

By seeking the professional opinion and expertise of an orthodontist, you can find a teeth straightening solution that will work for you. You will benefit from:

  • In depth initial consultation to find out what your options are
  • High quality appliances that are tailored for your smile
  • Follow up, braces repair and review appointments as needed to keep your progress on track

To find out more about our treatment options and what you need to do in terms of teeth straightening at home, please call us on 020 8646 6200 or follow the link to book a consultation with our friendly and experienced team.