Clear aligner Attachments

When we talk of clear aligners or clear aligners attachment, people often get the idea that they are capable of correcting only mild to moderate teeth alignment problems and do not work effectively for complicated alignment cases. But this isn’t true for all dental cases. The efficacy of clear aligners isn’t subject to the clear aligner trays alone rather it is also rooted in the execution and technique implemented in the treatment. Therefore, when it comes to ‘attachments’ in clear aligner treatment, they can be understood as supporting accessories to get accurate results with clear aligner trays.

What are attachments in clear aligner treatment?

When we talk of clear aligners or clear aligners attachment, people often get the idea that they are capable of correcting only mild to moderate teeth alignment problems and do not work effectively for complicated alignment cases. But this isn’t true for all dental cases. The efficacy of clear aligners isn’t subject to the clear aligner trays alone rather it is also rooted in the execution and technique implemented in the treatment. Therefore, when it comes to ‘attachments’ in clear aligner treatment, they can be understood as supporting accessories to get accurate results with clear aligner trays.

What are attachments in clear aligner treatment?

Attachments’ as the name suggests are meant to get more grip of the aligner trays on the teeth so that the aligner trays can apply the required pressure to move the teeth to desired position. The attachments are like little buttons that get hold of the aligner trays more effectively, which works with the pressure needed to fix the misalignment issue. These attachments are points of force application that increase the efficacy of the aligners and bring about the required tooth movement in lesser time as compared to using aligners without attachments.

Shapes of attachments:

 

Doctors choose the attachment shape according to the treatment requirements. The attachments come in shapes like semi-circle, squares, rectangles, ellipsoids, and triangles but the shape is entirely a matter of movement requirements and not just for show. Different kinds of tooth movement require different attachment shapes.

Attachment material:

Clear aligner attachments are made from dental resin which is either tooth-colored or transparent. So, when you choose a clear aligner treatment, all the associated devices and techniques are also non-intrusive. These attachments are also completely invisible like the clear aligner trays.

Placement:

Attachments are generally placed at the center of front or back teeth as this is the position where the aligner trays can get maximum grip. If the right pressure is applied at right time in the treatment then the results to are accurate and fast.

Are attachments removable?

Unlike clear aligner trays that can be removed while eating, attachments are fixed and cannot be removed but as clear aligner attachments are very small and do not have any wire mechanism involved, there are no food restrictions with the attachments. But to keep them sturdy at their position, one must avoid hard food items such as candies etc.

How long do we need attachments

Clear aligner attachments and trays go hand in hand for better treatment results. Therefore, depending on the complexity of the teeth misalignment, the patient might have to wear at least 8 to 16 attachments during the entire course of the treatment. The attachments are removed only when the treatment has reaped desired results.

Are attachments mandatory in clear aligner treatment?

Attachments are not mandatory in clear aligner treatment but in dental cases where the teeth are severely misaligned or rotated or there is a wide gap between the teeth, doctors do suggest attachments as they act as catalysts in the clear aligner treatment. They anchor the aligner trays firmly onto the tooth and exert added pressure needed to move the rigid tooth. Attachments act as a helping device for the treating doctors to bring about tooth movements more precisely and with correct pressure.

Do all patients need clear aligner attachments?

This is tough to answer without knowing the dental condition of any patient. Therefore, it is best to get a dental scan done by an authentic clear aligner provider. Through this dental scan which generates 3D images of the entire mouth cavity, the doctors are able to analyze, the severity of the teeth misalignment. After the dental scan is complete, the treating doctor is able to formulate a complete treatment plan where all minute details related to the clear aligner treatment are laid out. The treatment plan includes details like the number of attachments needed at various stages of the treatment, the number of aligner trays expected to get the teeth corrected, doctor visits required during the treatment, milestones to be reached after certain time intervals, etc.

One last thing to know!

Clear aligner attachments are also popularly known as ‘buttons’. They have been named buttons as they serve the same purpose as any other button that is anchoring the clear aligner trays to the correct position and building more pressure to be exerted onto the tooth for precise movement. They are also tiny just like buttons but are very crucial for accurate and quick teeth straightening results with clear aligners.