What Is Clear Aligner Therapy and How Does It Work?

Jul 13, 2021

Are you looking for the best way to get a straighter smile? There are plenty of great orthodontic options to get straight and healthy teeth, but one of the most popular amongst older teens and adults is clear aligner therapy.

This might be a term that you haven’t heard before. Clear aligner therapy is often just referred to as clear aligners or aligner treatment. It uses a series of clear plastic aligners to move your teeth slowly without the obvious wires and brackets of braces.

Not sure if it’s right for you? That’s okay, we’re here to help. Keep reading to learn more before you start seeking clear aligner therapy in northern Kentucky.

What Is Clear Aligner Therapy?

Clear aligner therapy is one of the most popular forms of orthodontic treatment. While many insurance companies consider it a form of cosmetic dentistry (and it can definitely improve the look of your smile), it’s a real orthodontic treatment that can also improve the health and functionality of your teeth.

Instead of using wires and brackets, your dentist will fit clear aligners (in our case, SureSmile aligners) to your teeth. Over time, your smile will straighten out.

There are many different brands of clear aligners. Our office uses SureSmile because we believe in their results. Make sure to avoid any harmful DIY aligner systems that a dentist won’t oversee with in-person appointments.

How Does It Work?

You might be wondering how clear aligners can move your teeth. After all, braces move your teeth by shifting the brackets with the metal wires. Without wires and brackets, how do the aligners work?

First, some people do wear something similar to brackets while they’re receiving treatment. These are tooth-colored attachments that the dentist will affix to each tooth. They help to hold the aligners in place and give them more power when it’s time to make complex movements.

That said, many people can receive treatment without the use of attachments.

When you go to your initial appointment, your provider will take a scan or a mold of your mouth to get a clear image of your teeth. They’ll send that scan or mold to the clear aligner creator who will make a special set of aligners that are unique to you.

Your provider will then give you that series of clear aligners that you’ll change on a schedule that they provide for you. Each aligner may not seem like it’s doing anything, but they’ll use subtle movements to push your teeth where they’re supposed to go.

Each aligner will make a small change until you finish treatment and your teeth are straight.

Benefits of Clear Aligner Therapy

So why bother getting clear aligner therapy at all? Braces are effective and quick and they’re tried and tested.

There are plenty of benefits of clear aligners. Here are just a few of our favorites.

A Subtle Look

The top reason that people choose clear aligners over other orthodontic options is how subtle they are.

When a child gets braces, it’s no big deal to have the metal option. Many children wear braces so your child will blend in with ease. As an older teen or adult, though, it’s scary to start your orthodontic journey.

While you should never be embarrassed about improving your smile, it’s normal to be self-conscious when there’s something new and obvious in your mouth.

This is where key aligners shine. While they aren’t completely invisible (especially if you have attachments or rubber bands), they’re more subtle than standard metal braces. You can’t see them in photos and many people won’t notice them in person unless you mention them yourself.

While there are health benefits to getting orthodontic treatment, you’re straightening your teeth to improve your self-confidence, right? With clear aligners, you don’t have to cover your smile even when you’re receiving treatment.

You Can Eat Your Favorite Foods

One of the best things about clear aligners is that you never have to ditch your favorite snacks while you’re wearing them.

You shouldn’t eat or drink anything aside from water while you have your aligners in, but they’re easy enough to remove that eating is a breeze. You get to keep your sticky and sugary foods as long as you’re willing to brush between meals.

Keep in mind that some foods, like foods containing turmeric, may stain your attachments if you have them.

Easy to Clean

When you have clear aligners, it’s far easier to keep your mouth and your aligners clean than it is to keep braces clean.

Braces make brushing and flossing a tricky process. When you have aligners, though, it’s a breeze. You brush and floss as you normally would.

Cleaning the aligners is also simple, though make sure to talk to your provider before you try. They’ll have good advice for the process.


One of the things that many potential patients worry about when it comes to clear aligners is effectiveness. Everyone knows that braces work. Are aligners as effective?

For most orthodontic issues, clear aligners are as effective as other forms of orthodontic treatment. They can handle bite problems, spacing, crowding, and more.

Clear aligner technology has come a long way. In 2021, it’s a reliable form of treatment for most patients.

Are Clear Aligners Right for You?

Clear aligner therapy is a great solution to any orthodontic issues. Not only can you improve the look of your smile, but you can also improve your oral health. You don’t even need to put up with inconvenient and obvious metal braces.

If you think that you might be a good candidate for clear aligners, contact a dental health professional today.

Are you looking for clear aligner therapy in Union, KY? We’re here for you! Contact our office to set up an appointment today.