Friday, March 31, 2017

Dangers of DIY Orthodontics

Last February, the American Association of Orthodontists released a study that showed 13% of its members had treated someone who attempted to perform orthodontics on themselves. At Dr. Dipika Shah’s Holmdel office, it is alarming to us that anyone would think this is a good idea and we want to help our patients avoid scams and harmful practices.

DIY orthodontics were popularized by the story of someone who used a 3D printer to manufacture his own aligners while characterizing the standard orthodontic process as dragging out treatment to raise costs. This is not true; moving teeth, which are living tissue, through jaw bones takes time because the jaw bones must be allowed to rebuild themselves. Moving teeth too quickly will leave them loose and could cause them to fall out or move back to their former position.

Other publications encourage much more primitive corrective methods, such as substituting wires with home items. However, tying teeth together instead of connecting them with a bracket-supported wire could strangle the teeth’s blood supply. Furthermore, without a bracket to hold the ties in place, the ties could slide into the wearer’s gum pockets and get stuck there while they rot.

Our office provides a variety of orthodontic and payment options. Please come see us if you are worried about misaligned teeth so we can fix them the safe, effective way.

Dr. Dipika Shah, Master in the Academy of General Dentistry, operates at 723 N Beers St, Suite 2F, Holmdel, New Jersey, 07733-1512. To schedule an appointment, call 732-264-8180 or visit and fill out a contact form.


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