The days of having to wear wire braces to straighten teeth are far behind us. Nowadays, clear aligners are designed to be effective, more comfortable, and less noticeable. Besides the fact that they are nearly invisible, they are also easily removable.* That means that there are no limitations to what a patient can eat or drink during treatment.
Each pair of aligners is custom-made to fit the individual and all movement will be planned ahead of time. Some plans may include the addition of special attachments. These small fixtures are attached to the tooth during treatment and correspond with each aligner to help provide the desired movement. We’ve put together all the information you need to know about these attachments and what to expect if they are included in your treatment plan.
The Basics About Aligner Attachments
For most people, aligners alone are perfectly sufficient for their orthodontic treatment. However, sometimes additional force is required to help with more complex teeth movements. For example, some people have incredibly crooked or crowded teeth that need to be turned or shifted extensively to be in line with the other teeth. In these cases, an orthodontist might recommend teeth attachments along with the standard aligner treatment. These attachments are small dental pieces used to provide extra grip or pressure for especially problematic teeth.
There are many different types of aligner attachments including bumps, buttons, engagers, and more. Some of these attachments may adhere to your teeth while others may be built into your clear aligners. Each type of attachment is used for specific purposes. For example, buttons are small fixtures in aligners that act as hooks for rubber bands. On the other hand, small attachments that go on your teeth may be used to provide more grip or ensure that aligners are secure.