DIY braces, or “Do It Yourself” braces, have become one of the latest trends to hit social media. These forms of braces either use home-made materials, such as paperclips and rubber bands, or purchase supplies from online stores to allow people to have braced themselves. The popularity of this concept has skyrocketed into a dangerous hazard to people’s dental health. This trend presents an alarming, terrifying concept about how people perceive their teeth, and as dentists, our goals for our patients is to educate people about what can happen with their teeth. We’re here to say no to DIY braces and tell you why you should consider them.
What are the Risks of DIY Braces?
DIY braces can be made with anything, from fishing line to plastic, and many people can find tutorials for these braces through social media websites such as Pinterest and YouTube. However, these trends can lead to some serious consequences for your teeth. Here are some of the reasons why we suggest you don’t try this trend out.
- No Supervision: The lack of supervision is one of the main reasons we don’t suggest trying this idea. Dentists and orthodontists have spent years of study understanding the anatomy of teeth and how they work, and they’re specifically trained to handle tooth alignment issues. Orthodontists work in this field and provide medically sound devices that safely move your tooth alignment without risk.
- Not ADA Approved: The American Dental Association observes and creates regulations surrounding dental products, procedures, and practices to keep patients safe. According to the ADA, they strongly discourage the practice of “do-it-yourself” braces because of the potential harm it can create for patients’ teeth.
- Tooth Loss: Whether you have protruding teeth, overcrowded teeth, or gaping teeth, DIY braces can lead to permanent tooth loss if the teeth shift too quickly. For instance, when a person decides to use rubber bands to straighten their gap, the rubber bands can slip under the gums and loosen the tooth’s root, causing it to shift abnormally and cause the tooth to fall out.
- Higher risk of Infection: Placing at-home appliances in your mouth can bring in foreign bacteria. If a person also has poor oral hygiene, that person can also develop gum disease and risk getting tooth decay as a result of DIY braces.
- TMJ Disorder: Some cases have reported the teeth shifting in multiple directions, and even taking off the device can cause the teeth to go into a relapse and obstruct bone growth. This obstruction can cause TMJ disorder, where the joint connecting the jaw to the skull is inflamed, leading to a higher risk of periodontal disease and jawbone decay.
Why See A Dentist For Your Teeth?
As dentists, we provide not just teeth cleanings but comprehensive, long-term healthcare for our patients. Our goals are to give people preventative measures for caring for their teeth and gums, and we aim to work with patients to find the right treatment for them. For more information about how to straighten your teeth, schedule an appointment with Dr. Alan Martin at Waco Dental in Waco, TX, for a full dental evaluation.