The Illusion of Aligners: Buying Treatment Online

Treatment added to the cart! Online shopping is all fun and games until you get serious about it. In the era of Myntra, Amazon, and Zomato people have started buying orthodontic aligners online
The Indian Orthodontic Society (IOS) has objected to the marketing of teeth-correcting aligners with a direct-to-consumer (D2C) approach by companies (Pixabay)
The Indian Orthodontic Society (IOS) has objected to the marketing of teeth-correcting aligners with a direct-to-consumer (D2C) approach by companies (Pixabay)

Treatment added to the cart!

Online shopping is all fun and games until you get serious about it. In the era of Myntra, Amazon, and Zomato people have also started buying orthodontic aligners online.

We are nourished by marketing gimmicks. Marketing aligners through direct to consumer approach is downright unethical. Recently, the The Indian Orthodontic Society (IOS) has objected to the marketing of teeth-correcting aligners with a direct-to-consumer (D2C) approach by companies.

“The approach of any company marketing teeth correcting aligners with direct to consumer approach is unethical. This kind of minimum supervision orthodontic treatment can result in poor outcomes or permanent damage to innocent patients who get influenced by these advertisements,” says Dr. Balvinder Singh Thakkar, president of the Indian Orthodontic Society.

The damage could be anything from gum issues, tooth loss, and loose teeth. Sometimes the damage may be detected so late that it might become difficult to repair.

The dental fraternity condemned the cavalier approach of D2C companies to diagnosis and treatment. A complaint had been submitted to the Dental Council of India (DCI) against the sale of aligners.

Virat Kohli and Anushka Sharma endorsed the aligner purchase online. Virat Kohli said in the ad, "Fixing tooth gap is now as easy as ordering on food app.''

"Easy to book, easy to use, and easy on the pocket," as Anushka thoughtlessly blabbered her lines.

An esthetic-concerned adolescent with a tooth gap might order aligners thinking his gap is due to misalignment. Only to later find out the cause was the thick band of connective tissue (frenum) bridging teeth.

The aligner company sites take 30-40 second smile assessment tests, intra-oral pictures, and run online digital scans. Voila! they deliver you a placebo smile. This timely approach might save you from the drills, pins, and pain for some time. But one can develop serious disfigurement in the aftermath.

A thorough and detailed analysis is done after studying teeth models, calculating sum of incisors, premolar diameter, etc. you do the math! Orthodontics is done in three dimensions (Pixabay)
A thorough and detailed analysis is done after studying teeth models, calculating sum of incisors, premolar diameter, etc. you do the math! Orthodontics is done in three dimensions (Pixabay)

An orthodontist can't do good orthodontics unless they study your mouth, teeth, and craniofacial structures. A panoramic x-ray i.e. OPG (orthopantomogram), and cephalometric analysis aid in planning treatment. A thorough and detailed analysis is done after studying teeth models, and calculating the sum of incisors, premolar diameter, etc. you do the math! Orthodontics is done in three dimensions, by replicating your teeth into plaster study models.

An orthodontist visually inspects, studies diagnostic x-rays, and analyses functional anatomy before planning treatment (Pixabay)
An orthodontist visually inspects, studies diagnostic x-rays, and analyses functional anatomy before planning treatment (Pixabay)

Cephalogram is another orthodontist's tool used to study the dental and skeletal relationship of the human skull. An orthodontist visually inspects, studies diagnostic x-rays, and analyses functional anatomy before planning treatment. Sometimes dental anomalies arise due to the improper functioning of organs.

There are many causes for the gaps in teeth. Few clicks on the internet can't rule out the underlying cause for teeth gap. It can arise due to incorrect swallowing reflexes, thumb-sucking habits, and gum diseases (periodontitis). Orthodontists must evaluate your teeth for underlying causes.

A doctor treats causes and not just symptoms!

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