Is My Dentist Using Scare Tactics So I Get Invisalign?

I went to the dentist for a basic checkup and he told me I should get Invisalign. I told him that I didn’t have any interest in cosmetic procedures. Really, my teeth are fine the way they are. No, they’re not perfectly straight, but I’m ok with that. I think it adds character and I’m not about to become a model anytime soon anyway. Well, then the doctor goes off about how I’m going to get gum disease and all kinds of cavities if I don’t do it. It really bothers me that he started off talking about how it will look nice, and then changed his story to how my teeth will suffer if I don’t do it. Was any part of what he was telling me true?


Dear James,

It sounds like you and your dentist got off on the wrong foot and he rubbed you the wrong way. A lot of people choose to go with Invisalign because it can dramatically enhance your smile. It might be safe to say that the majority of people who get braces do so because they’re unhappy with having crooked teeth. When your dentist spoke with you, he probably assumed you were like most patients, which is why he started with aesthetics.

Realistically, though, having straight teeth is better for your oral health. When your teeth are crooked, it can be difficult to clean between them, which leads to decay. It is also harder to floss and keep your gums healthy, which leads to periodontal disease. Crooked teeth are not a death sentence, by any means, but correcting their alignment can often provide people with better long-term oral health. If you’re diligent with your home care and follow up with your dental checkups every six months (or more if it’s recommended), you’ll probably do just fine. If you start having gingivitis, bleeding gums, or decay on the surfaces between your teeth, you may want to revisit the idea of braces. On the other hand, you can always opt to do Invisalign now, and possibly prevent these problems in the first place.

This blog is sponsored by Elgin dentist, Dr. Steve Sirin.

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