Modern life has made everything much easier. Technology has revolutionized our lives. If you are on any social media app, you have seen or heard about Smile Direct Club or Candid as a cheaper alternative to straighten your teeth. So what are those companies and are they a better alternative to seeing an orthodontist?
To answer this question, let’s first talk about what each of the two do as part of your treatment.
Smile Direct Club or Candid have a store front. You would go into the store and get a scan of your teeth by a technician. You will fill out a health history form as well. The technician/dental hygienist then asks you what your concerns are. Using that scan, the company will then make your aligners and will ship them to your home. You will use those aligners until your teeth look good. There is a doctor supervising the treatment of all patient, but you will never see the doctor. The treating doctor might not even be in your residing state.
When you go to an orthodontist, your orthodontist will do a complete exam of your teeth. Your orthodontist will look at the balance of your face, check any jaw joint problems and will take some x-rays to check the health of your bones and gums as well. For some gum conditions, orthodontic treatment is not recommended at all. There might be some cavities that need to be addressed first before your orthodontic treatment. The orthodontist will then talk to you about your concerns. Sometimes, your concern will change your treatment plan. A main concern of an individual might not be the same as the next patient. A patient might complain about flared teeth, while another patient with the same teeth might be perfectly fine with it. The orthodontist will give you a couple of options to choose from based on your needs and concerns. You will get a scan of your teeth, start your treatment and will see the orthodontist regularly. The reason for those appointments is to make sure everything is going according to plan and sometimes, the orthodontist will have to change the course of treatment or tweak it based on your individual response to treatment. During treatment, you will have ONE orthodontist who is responsible for your treatment. During your treatment, the shape of some of your teeth might need to be changed or some tooth coloring material might need to be temporarily added to your teeth. Those bumps will help achieve the optimum results and will be remove upon completion of your treatment.
Let’s do a summary and compare the two methods:
- You will know the name of the orthodontist who is responsible for your treatment and will see them every time. With Smile Direct Club or Candid, you do not know that name of the doctor who has prescribed treatment for you and will never see them. Your orthodontist specifically knows about your case since she/he has treatment planned the case with you and has discussed it with you in detail.
- With Smile Direct Club or Candid, you will get the whole treatment shipped to you and will not go in for regular check-ups. If something is not looking right or not going according to plan, there will be no way for you to find out, because you never see a professional.
- As part of your orthodontist treatment with an orthodontist, you will get a full exam with x-rays, but with Smile Direct Club or Candid, you just get a scan of your teeth. A scan is basically a 3-D image of your teeth but does not include any x-rays.
- With Smile Direct Club or Candid, only one treatment plan is offered. That treatment plan is decided for you and you will only find out about that after you are done with your in-store visit. With an orthodontist, you will go in for a visit to talk about different options for treatment and will choose what works best for you together with your orthodontist.
- If any questions/problems arise during your treatment, your orthodontist is right there to answer your questions during treatment. With Smile Direct Club or Candid, you do not have access to a healthcare provider.
- As part of your orthodontic treatment, some bumps (AKA attachments) might need to be added to your teeth while you are in treatment or the shape of some of your teeth might need to be changed (AKA IPRs) to achieve optimum results. Your orthodontist will do that during your regular visits. With Smile Direct Club or Candid, you do not have that as an option. Smile Direct Club or Candid, therefore, is limited to treating very mild cases. Remember, not all cases are as easy as they seem at the beginning. What might look like a very mild case, might have some nuances in it that needs extra attention. You also might have some concerns that could be corrected with orthodontic treatment, but you never knew that was an option until you see an orthodontist.
You can go to this link to get more information regarding the difference between direct-to-consumer vs orthodontist.
Visit us at iSmile Orthodonitcs in Remdond or go to our website to schedule a free consult and see if you are a good candidate for orthodontic treatment.