I tried DIY Orthodontics. Is My Oral Health at Risk?

diy orthos risk

San Francisco and Marin CA

Large companies with no physical presence have profited in recent years from the internet and people’s desire to have straight, beautiful smiles. At-home orthodontic aligners like those from SmileDirectClub promised to save consumers time and money by straightening their teeth at home. The DIY orthodontic aligners look strikingly similar to Invisalign, which our cosmetic dentist office in San Francisco recommends and staunchly stands behind. That’s because we closely monitor patient progress on our Invisalign treatment program, which very often straightens teeth in half the time it takes traditional metal braces. At-home orthodontic aligner companies offer neither in-person monitoring or supervised follow-up care.

And now, SmileDirectClub won’t be offering anything. After promising a “lifetime smile guarantee” to consumers, the company filed for bankruptcy then announced that it would be closing its global operations, halting all of its teeth-aligner treatments and shutting down its customer care support, according to a report by the Associated Press. The “lifetime smile guarantee” turned out to be not-so-lifetime, after all, and that left people with nothing to smile about.

An estimated tens of thousands of consumers are left wondering how to proceed with their at-home orthodontic treatment program and when — or if — they’ll be reimbursed for money they’ve already paid to the company.

If you have been a victim of SmileDirectClub’s empty promises, our Invisalign dentist in Marin is committed to making sure your oral health does not suffer any more than it potentially already has. Read on to learn more about the increased risks you’re facing as a consumer of DIY orthodontic aligners — and how we can help.

Risks of DIY braces

The risks are high for DIY orthodontics at home. Do the aligners work to shift teeth? Yes. That is precisely the problem. Clear aligners can very rapidly shift teeth. When that happens with no supervision or guided direction by a dentist or orthodontist, it causes elevated risks to oral health, including gum disease, jaw bone loss, tooth loss and severe damage to the jaw joints and muscles that control how the teeth fit together long-term and how they will react to new, largely unsupervised positioning of the teeth. It can also cause the sudden onset of temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder, a painful condition that often causes limited jaw movement, chronic headaches, ringing and pain deep in the ear, hearing problems and neck/shoulder spasms.

Displaced patients

Were you a consumer of SmileDirectClub’s at-home aligner program and now you feel abandoned? You’re not alone. Tens of thousands of people have been left unsupervised with no new aligners, no money and no way to reach the company for consumer care.

Dangers of At-home DIY Orthodontics in the Bay Area

Our Bay Area cosmetic dentist at Glen Park Dental is committed to helping consumers in the San Francisco and Marin areas who are victims of SmileDirectClub or any other direct-to-consumer orthodontics company that made promises and didn’t deliver. We are offering free virtual consultations to examine your particular situation and design a customized plan to ensure your jawbone is healthy and your teeth are straightened safely with close professional monitoring and guidance. Give us a call at (415) 799-3900 or reach us online to schedule your free virtual consultation today.