Dr. Nooshi Akavan of Akavan Orthodontics knows that treating serious orthodontic issues with a retainer instead of braces or Invisalign clear aligners is ill advised. Braces or Invisalign work over a defined course of treatment to optimally re-adjust your teeth.
A retainer would have to be worn consistently to work at keeping teeth straight. Getting a retainer instead of braces for patients who live near or work in Woodland Hills, CA may work in some situations. Dr. Akavan does not recommend patients try to substitute one orthodontic treatment for another.
Orthodontic treatment with braces is a commitment of money, effort, and time for patients. The reward of these commitments is a straight set of teeth, a more functional mouth and jaw, and a beautiful smile.
Some patients may attempt ways to avoid the commitments that braces require and still get perfect teeth. One way people try to do this is by wearing only a retainer instead of braces to straighten their teeth.
When Is a Retainer Indicated Instead of Braces?
There are specific instances where retainers may be used instead of braces near Woodland Hills, CA. Retainers are a good substitute for braces when the issue is extremely minor; that is, if the problem concerns only one or two teeth.
If there is a slight gap between two teeth or if one of the teeth is out of place, a retainer can be used effectively. However, the retainer might have to be worn for a few years for the treatment to be permanent.
When Is a Retainer NOT Indicated Instead of Braces?
There are instances when a retainer should not be used as a substitute for traditional metal braces. Patients who have orthodontic issues involving more than one tooth (such as overbites or underbites, crossbites, gaps between multiple teeth, or many crooked teeth) should consider orthodontic treatment with braces. All of these orthodontic issues are treated by Dr. Akavan using braces.
Why Are Braces More Effective Than a Retainer?
The material retainers are made of is not strong enough to shift and move the teeth like Invisalign clear aligners or traditional metal braces can. Retainers, as their name implies, are usually worn after treatment with either Invisalign or braces to retain the newly aligned position of the teeth. Retainers are used to maintain straight teeth, not to make them straight.
Is Invisalign an Option for Me?
Traditional metal braces are not the only option for orthodontic patients near Woodland Hills, CA. Dr. Akavan offers Invisalign clear aligners to his patients who want to avoid wearing traditional braces. Invisalign is clear and removable, just like a retainer is.
Invisalign offers the best of both approaches to orthodontic treatment (braces and retainers). It’s used by many patients who do not want the bulkiness of traditional braces, but who need the permanent results that a retainer alone cannot deliver.
After patients complete their course of treatment with Invisalign, they are often fitted with a clear retainer to keep their results intact.
Braces are only one option for patients near Woodland Hills, CA with severe orthodontic treatment needs. Invisalign clear aligners may be the perfect solution that will correct a variety of orthodontic issues while being more comfortable and discreet for the patient.
Both effectively treat severe orthodontic issues like overbites or underbites, crossbites, gaps between multiple teeth, or many crooked teeth.
For more information or to schedule an appointment, contact Dr. Akavan and Akavan Orthodontics at (818) 345-9601.