Most people feel that their teeth are an integral part of their self-confidence. When you feel like your teeth don’t look quite right, you may feel uncomfortable talking, laughing, or smiling. At M. Scott Runnels Orthodontics in Destin, FL, we understand how important it is to have straight, beautiful teeth. Today, we’re looking at what a Carriere Distalizer is used for, how quickly it works, and more. It may be right for you if you aren’t quite happy with the appearance of your teeth.
What Is a Carriere Distalizer Used for?
A Carriere Distalizer can be used to correct either an underbite or overbite. Treatment with this highly effective orthodontic device is often recommended in cases where one’s mouth is too small to be treated effectively with braces. However, it is also common for this treatment to be undergone before the implementation of other teeth straightening techniques.
Most of the time, people seek treatment with this device because their bite problems make them feel self-conscious. However, it is effective enough to be ideal in cases where chewing is uncomfortable and proper speech is difficult.
What Else Can This Orthodontic Device Do?
There are a number of incredible benefits of this orthodontic device beyond correcting your bite. One of the most compelling benefits of treatment with this device is that it can mitigate the risk of developing temporomandibular joint disorder. This often painful joint disorder can result in a number of consequences, including the premature degeneration of your tooth enamel.
What Are the Most Common Symptoms of Temporomandibular Joint Disorder?
Temporomandibular joint disorder symptoms vary on a case-by-case basis. That said, some of the most common symptoms include neck, shoulder, head, and back pain. Another very common symptom of this disorder is jaw pain triggered by trying to chew or speak. If you suffer from this condition, you also may experience such symptoms as:
- Jaw popping
- Jaw locking
- Jaw clicking
What Can I Expect During the Treatment Process?
The first phase of treatment with the Carriere appliance involves using tiny screws to create an anchor point. Depending on your unique situation, this may involve a passive lingual arch or full mandibular fixed appliance. Once the anchor point has been created, the device’s arms will be attached to the upper teeth on each side of the upper jaw. With that done, we will connect the rear of your lower jaw to the upper bar with an elastic band affixed to your molars.
To be clear, the longer this elastic band is in place, the sooner you will be able to see your desired results. Ideally, the band should be removed only for mealtimes and oral hygiene. In other words, if you’re not eating solid food, brushing your teeth, or flossing your teeth, you should have the elastic band in place. At a minimum, the elastic band should be worn for 20 hours per day.
How Quickly Does This Treatment Work?
It usually takes between six and seven months to straighten teeth with the Carriere appliance. However, individual experiences vary based on the severity of the concerns that need to be treated. In some cases, it is only necessary to wear the device for three months. Note, the more closely you follow the treatment instructions, the faster you will enjoy straight teeth.
If you need braces or another orthodontic teeth straightening device after treatment with the Carriere appliance, your required treatment time will be roughly halved. In other words, if you need braces after your Carriere Distalizer treatment, you should only need to wear braces for 12 to 18 months instead of 24 to 36 months.
Am I a Good Candidate for Treatment With This Device?
To find out if you are a good Carriere Distalizer treatment, you will need to sit down with an orthodontic expert. There is a pretty good chance you will be considered a good fit for treatment with this device if you are worried about the side effects of a misaligned bite, like:
- Difficulty chewing
- Difficulty brushing or flossing
- Mouth strain
- Difficulty speaking
Difficulty chewing is one of the most unfortunate side effects of misaligned teeth. If you have had to modify your diet to exclude foods that are hard for you to chew, know that you don’t have to live with the consequences of misaligned teeth for the rest of your life. If you’re a good candidate for teeth straightening with this device, all of your favorite foods could be back on the menu in under a year!
Difficulty Keeping Your Teeth Clean
Another common side effect of misaligned teeth is difficulty keeping the teeth clean. There is a much greater chance that plaque will build up along your gum line if your teeth are misaligned because it can be difficult to reach where your gums and tooth roots align. When you can’t brush or floss your teeth effectively, you may experience such consequences as periodontal disease, tooth infections, and cavities.
There is also a very good chance you will be considered a good candidate for treatment with this device if you are concerned about mouth strain. When your teeth aren’t aligned properly, regardless of whether you have an overbite or underbite, you may start to shy away from foods that require you to chew a lot.
Unfortunately, your teeth need exercise just like your muscles do. The weaker they become due to a lack of use and poor oral hygiene, the more likely it is that at least one of your teeth will break. Furthermore, your cheek and jaw muscles need to be worked regularly or else there is a great risk of atrophy. If you favor one side of your mouth when you chew, some of your jaw and cheek muscles may become painfully strained due to chronic overuse.
Yet another sign that you will be considered a good candidate for treatment with this device is feeling self-conscious. If your bottom jaw is much farther forward than your upper jaw, all of your front teeth are readily apparent when you smile. If you feel self-conscious about the way your teeth are on display when you smile wide, there is an excellent chance that you could benefit significantly from treatment with the Carriere Distalizer device.
Do you have a lisp due to misaligned teeth? Do you find speaking properly difficult, tripping over your tongue, and finding certain sounds impossible to pronounce? If so, straightening your teeth with this device will make pronouncing certain sounds much easier. You will be amazed by how much more confident you will feel speaking to people once it isn’t a struggle to communicate clearly.
Are Braces or Invisalign Retainers a Better Choice for Me?
Generally, whether braces or Invisalign retainers are a better fit for you comes down to your personal preference. Invisalign is often recommended for older teens and adults because compliance with the treatment instructions is a must. Like the Carriere appliance, Invisalign must be worn for 20 to 22 hours per day for efficient, effective results. If you don’t think you can follow this guideline, braces may be a better fit for you.
Another indicator that Invisalign may be a better fit for you is that you are particular about your diet. Invisalign retainers are removed before eating, so you can still eat popcorn, steak, chewy candy, and other foods that are off the table if you opt for braces. Furthermore, Invisalign is great for people who play contact sports or other sports that carry a high risk of a mouth injury, like basketball or soccer.
How Will I Need to Care for My Invisalign Retainers?
Caring for Invisalign retainers is pretty simple. You need to take them out when you brush and floss your teeth, use mouthwash, or wear a mouthguard to play sports. You also need to take them out when you eat, drink hot beverages, or drink beverages that may stain the retainer.
Schedule Your Initial Consultation Today
A Carriere Distalizer is an orthodontic device designed to treat bite problems safely and effectively. It is generally recommended for individuals with a mouth too small to be treated effectively with braces. However, an initial appointment with an orthodontic specialist is necessary to verify this treatment is appropriate for you. Contact us today at M. Scott Runnels Orthodontics in Destin, FL to schedule an initial consultation if you have bite problems you want to correct.