Do-it-Yourself Braces

The Dangerous New Online Dental Trend

By Dr. Steven Chumbley
‹ Back to Dental Health
Posted in on August 28th, 2018

There are so many things on social media that make us smile, but there is a dangerous new online trend that could literally take the smile right off your face. The American Dental Association recently launched a public awareness campaign to combat a new threat to America’s dental health: Do-it-Yourself Braces. Yes, you read that right… DIY Braces.This recent internet fad is spreading rapidly, especially among children and teens. According to a recent study, about 13% of ADA dentists have seen at least one patient that tried DIY Braces. A staggering number of these had done serious, permanent damage to their smile. Some even had teeth that fell out of their mouth.

The American Association of Orthodontists also issued a consumer alert, warning the public of the danger of DIY Braces. Many states are taking legal action to stop fraudulent companies that sell products online that claim to straighten teeth without the need of a dentist. There are many things you can safely do yourself, especially with all the good resources available online, but you should only trust your smile to a professional dentist.

What are DIY Braces?

Do-it-yourself braces are an attempt to straighten teeth without the help of a professional. There are a growing number of DIY Braces videos and tutorials trending online right now that teach people to straighten their teeth with common household items like paper clips, rubber bands, wire, earring backs, and string. Those who create these videos are mostly teens and children with no medical or dental knowledge. Most of those that try them are attempting to save money, but the damage they can cause costs far more than real braces would have.

There are also a growing number of legitimate-looking online companies that sell kits for straightening your own teeth. Some of these companies go as far as creating custom appliances based on molds of the customer’s mouth. Several state governments are engaged in legal battles to shut these companies down for breaking laws that exist to protect public safety.

What are the Dangers of DIY Braces?

DIY braces could cause extremely expensive dental problems for the rest of your life. Braces should only be applied by highly trained dental specialists because it must be done correctly in order to get the desired results. DIY braces usually end with teeth that are even more crooked than before, if they don’t completely fall out during the process. Dangerous oral infections can also occur. At best, correcting the damage will usually require getting real braces with a legitimate orthodontist anyway. There could also be lifelong dental problems from tooth and gum damage.

This local news report explains more about the DIY braces trend:

Your smile is extremely important to your health, success, and happiness. You should only trust your smile to someone who really knows what they are doing, and will take good care of it. If you are looking for an orthodontist or dentist in the Spring, TX area, please consider visiting us at The Hill Dental Group. We can put together a customized dental plan that will safely improve your smile. We also have financing options that can help with the cost.

To schedule an orthodontic consultation, Call 281-376-0911 or Make an Appointment Online.

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