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September 12, 2023

Buyer Beware! Know the Risks of Mail-Order Clear Aligners

Close-up of teeth with clear aligner

In recent years, mail-order clear aligners have become increasingly popular. These systems lure people in with promises of convenience and a low price tag. Have you been tempted to straighten your teeth using one of these products? If so, you should be aware of the risk that you are taking. This blog post discusses some potential downsides of mail-order clear aligners so you can make a well-informed decision about how to care for your smile. In all likelihood, you will decide to seek professional treatment from a local dentist instead.

There Is No Comprehensive Exam

Mail-order companies often focus solely on repositioning the teeth, rather than taking a comprehensive approach to each patient’s oral health. No thorough exam is required before starting treatment. Therefore, it could be easy for certain issues to get overlooked. For example, you might have cavities or signs of gum disease. You should be aware of such problems and undergo appropriate treatment before you get started with clear aligners.

There Is Limited Supervision

Some mail-order clear aligner companies encourage patients to attend virtual checkups or submit photos of their teeth to record their progress. While there is nothing wrong with doing those things, they do reflect a lack of personalized support and supervision. With treatment from a local dentist, you get to work with a team of people you know and trust. They are invested in your success and view you as a real person, not just another case.

Treatment Is Not Always Successful

Admittedly, some people have experienced great success with mail-order clear aligners. Others, though, have ended up regretting their decision. The aligners do not always work like they should; some patients have found that the state of their teeth actually worsened after their mail-order treatment. They had to spend additional money to get a local dentist to help them correct the problem.

Lawsuits Have Been Filed Against Mail-Order Aligner Companies

Some mail-order companies have faced lawsuits claiming that they are practicing dentistry unlawfully. Other lawsuits have focused on the damage that these products have caused to some patients’ teeth. Given the shaky legal grounds on which these companies operate, many people have chosen not to entrust them with their teeth.

They May Use Outdated Techniques

Some mail-order clear aligner companies expect patients to take their own dental impressions. That is risky because even a small error could affect the outcome of your treatment. They might also use basic plastic to make their aligners instead of more advanced materials.

Mail-order clear aligners are risky! It would be safer to partner with a local dentist if you are looking to straighten your teeth.

Meet the Practice

Dr. James Olsen is a certified Invisalign provider in Ann Arbor, MI. He offers top-quality care at a reasonable price and is personally committed to helping each patient enjoy a successful treatment experience. If you have questions about what it would take to straighten your teeth, contact our office at 734-996-0200.

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