For many individuals, financial difficulty or limited access to dental care play major roles in their decision to practice DIY dentistry. Whether it’s mending a broken tooth, or removing braces, people are getting more and more creative with methods of at-home dental care. The danger, however, lies in not understanding the lasting effects that these quick-fixes can have on your oral health.
Straightening Your Teeth Using DIY Braces
A trend that has increased in popularity as of late is an at-home technique for closing gaps between teeth using what are known as “gap bands”. Some turn to this method as a form of DIY braces, attempting to close a gap by placing elastic bands around their teeth. Although “gap bands” are typically cheap elastic hair bands, dental elastics have actually been used by dental professionals as a method of non-surgical tooth extraction in patients with disorders, such as hemophilia, for quite some time. The bands move along the surface of teeth and gums, destroying soft tissues and bone over time and leading to tooth loss. Those who perform DIY dentistry with elastic bands can suffer inflammation, infection or irreversible damage to the teeth.
Using At-Home Dental Care to Remove Teeth
A simple online search will yield a questionable array of at-home dentistry in the form of tooth removal techniques for kids and adults. Some methods involve the now classic act of tying one end of a piece of string around a loose tooth and the other to a doorknob, then slamming the door. Others involve tying a string to sports equipment, or even cars! Although some of these methods may seem harmless to those performing them, pulling a loose tooth too early could cause soft tissue damage or infection.
Another form of DIY dental care involves the use of pliers to extract bothersome teeth. As is often the case with attempts at DIY dentistry, there are risks associated with pulling your own teeth. Along with the possibility of infection, the tooth could break, causing severe pain and requiring you to seek costly dental treatment.
Repairing Teeth with DIY Dental Fillings
At-home tooth repair kits are used to temporarily repair lost fillings or loose caps when a dental problem occurs outside of normal dental office hours or in cases where you cannot see a dentist right away. The mistake that many individuals make is relying on do-it-yourself tooth fillings as long-term solutions rather than visiting a dentist to receive proper treatment. If your tooth is damaged due to decay, avoiding a dental visit will only increase the risk of infection, gum disease and pain.
Removing Your Own Braces
Braces removal can be a tedious and delicate process even for experienced, well-equipped orthodontists. If you attempt DIY braces removal, you could actually damage your teeth in a number of ways, including:
- Broken enamel
- Staining due to bracket glue
- Tooth sensitivity
- Misaligned teeth
Because orthodontists are skilled professionals, they are able to thoroughly examine teeth and determine the right time for you to remove your braces. If you choose DIY dentistry instead, the results could be costly.
If you are considering DIY dentistry to solve your dental problem, you’re likely to only make the problem worse, causing short and long-term pain and damage to your teeth and overall oral health. The best decision you can make is to contact a dental professional instead.
Our skilled dentists determine the best treatment methods and even offer affordable financing options in order to provide you with a healthy smile that fits your budget. Call us today at (678) 306-6000, or complete this form to schedule an appointment.