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Natural Awakenings Milwaukee Magazine

How Clear Aligners Can Improve Oral Health

Jan 01, 2023 12:00AM ● By Dr. Udoka Holinbeck
Crowding, excess spacing and poor bite alignment cause trauma and wear to teeth, bones and gums. They also make it difficult to brush and floss, leading to heavier tartar build-up as well as increased inflammation in the body due to disease-causing microbes. When malocclusion (the irregular contact of upper teeth to bottom teeth) is significant, it can affect the airway. This can make one susceptible to many chronic conditions.

Metal braces are the traditional treatment for malocclusion, but they have their drawbacks. Aligners are clear, plastic mouth appliances used as an alternative to dental braces to straighten teeth with mild or moderate issues. With clear aligner technology, dentists can gently shift teeth into their correct positions without the burden of metal brackets and wires. Because aligners can be removed to brush and floss, patients can keep their teeth and gums cleaner during treatment. Additionally, the lack of trauma to the gums and lips from poking wires can lead to a more comfortable treatment experience.

Because straighter teeth mean fewer crevices for bacteria, as well as less strain on the jaw, generally people with straighter teeth and a balanced bite have improved oral health—and therefore, are more likely to keep their teeth during a lifetime.

There are several options for correcting the bite, and there are different brands of clear aligners. An integrative dentist can guide patients toward the option that is best for them.

Dr. Udoka Holinbeck is the owner of Bionica Dental Wellness and a Fellow of the Academy of General Dentistry. Bionica Dental Wellness is located at 2566 Sun Valley Dr., Delafield. For more information, call 262-337-9745 or visit BionicaDentalWellness.com.