April 09, 2020 4 min read

Since the advent of clear aligners, many new technologies have been developed to fix teeth alignment. Companies are striving to innovate and deliver new products that claim to fix your teeth in the most convenient, effective, and cost-efficient manner. But if there is one thing that we can’t get behind at Bitesoft Co, it’s the use of nighttime clear aligners. 

In case you didn't know, night wear clear aligners are used in the same way as any type of clear aligners – you put them on your teeth and let the aligner do its work. But the difference with this one is that you only wear it at night during sleep. This gives you at least 8 (at best 10) hours of wear versus the 22+ hours of day time use with regular aligners. 

Why are we not offering this same type of product? Find out more below...

How Do Regular Clear Aligners Work

In order to know why we’re doubtful about the effectiveness of nighttime clear aligners, you need to understand how it works. 

Aligners apply light but continuous force on your teeth in order to cause shift in movement. This phase lasts for about 2-3 days and signals the start of tooth movement. While it might lead to discomfort, this is a necessary phase in order to promote bone remodeling. 

Over the next few days and weeks, there will be gradual movement of the teeth and bones until they reach the ideal position. It is important to follow the orthodontics’ recommendation for its use to allow the bones to settle into that new position. Then, a healing phase will follow and you’ll be asked to wear retainers after you completed treatment. This will aid in retention of teeth placement and to discourage the teeth from shifting out of place. 

Given the model for night wear aligners, we are concerned if 10 hours a day would be enough to facilitate healthy and effective tooth movement. It would take longer for your teeth to reach the healing phase because your teeth are in a constant state of limbo. With more hours spent not wearing aligners during the day, it counteracts the effect of its nighttime use. Not only does this slow down the treatment process, it can also cause your teeth to shift in an undesired position. 

Are Nighttime Clear Aligners Too Good to Be True?

The use of nighttime clear aligners varies only in terms of the schedule. The aligners themselves are no different. Although there are some advantages to using clear aligners during the night, the drawbacks far outweigh them. 

  1. It takes longer to correct your teeth.

Our clear aligners are designed to give you results in an average of 4-6 months. This result comes with a minimum number of hours wearing the aligners per day over that period. By limiting the number of hours per day that you wear aligners, it also extends the treatment period (up to 10 months). Our regular day-time wear options require more discipline but the shorter treatment period means you can enjoy better teeth (and smile!) sooner.

  1. It might be ineffective.

When the concept of clear aligners was introduced in the market, it required users to wear them for 22+ hours per day. There is a reason for this – taking off your aligners would mean that the teeth will shift back into their original position. The longer you go without wearing them, the more you encourage a shift in movement. 

Another problem that it creates is that it could cause more discomfort due to the constant shifting of your teeth. If you’re a light sleeper, this might disrupt your sleeping pattern. It also causes extra strain on your teeth and you could even risk causing injury to your roots. Wearing your aligners throughout the day not only speeds up the orthodontic treatment process, but it can also facilitate healthy adjustment.

  1. It is not recommended for severe misalignments.

The idea of wearing aligners only for a few hours each day might be a suitable treatment option only for those with mild to moderate cases. It is considered a less invasive treatment so it might not be suited for anyone with severe spacing, bite misalignment, or crowding issues. 

Key Takeaway

The appeal of nighttime clear aligners is undeniable: it offers convenience and less disruption to your lifestyle. But the orthodontic experts that we work with know that the responsibility we have to educate our patients is of utmost importance. There is little to no evidence that support claims nighttime clear aligners actually work, so we choose not to offer this treatment option as of now. 

While methodologies and technologies have advanced, the biomechanics and physiology of human teeth remains unchanged. This is the most vital aspect of a successful orthodontic treatment. 

If you want to experience faster results and to correct your teeth alignment in the soonest possible time, it’s best to stick with the regular day-time use of clear aligners. This is how we can ensure that our aligners are more effective and worth every penny you spend. 

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