In my Life Smiles practice, we use aligners as well as Six-Month-Smiles, and it has made a nice impact on our practice and fits our practice very well. We also have a wonderful orthodontist who we refer to for kids for complicated cases.
Historically all of orthodontics, both for adults and kids, have been done by specialists. Although we’re kind of taught it in dental school, when we come out, we don’t even do the easy version. In the Thriving Dentist Podcast, I was joined by my friend Dr. Mike DiTolla who shared some of his experiences of adult orthodontics, and I can tell you why it could be an excellent addition to your general practice.
Unlike traditional orthodontics, aligners can be quite frustrating, since you can’t make teeth move as easily with aligners as you can with metal wires. But there might be adult patients who come to you after seeing Invisalign advertisements who really want to improve their smiles. Six Month Smiles can provide you with a great hybrid system to work with any smile.
Mixed appliance therapy
The best part of using Six Month Smiles is that you can do mixed appliance therapy, which is the ability to take 60% to 70% of the cases that you see — usually from hygiene exams, where patients might have crowded lower anterior teeth — and use aligners on the upper arch, which is more aesthetically pleasing, and then use brackets and archwires on the lower anterior teeth, which usually have more crowding.
With this you have the ability to offer patients very flexible treatment plans. Patients can opt for regular Six-Month-Smiles (in which they can get brackets and archwires), all aligners, or they can have a mixed treatment plan with the aligners on the top and the brackets and wires on the bottom. So, it’s a very open-minded approach to taking the best of both worlds, and it gives you a lot of flexibility.
Gone are the days when orthodontics meant wearing metal brackets and wires for up to two years or more. With new methods like Six-Month-Smiles, the process is made much easier and faster. In fact, you might find that a lot of your adult patients might be partial to orthodontics if they had the option of mixed appliance therapy. This is why adding adult orthodontics to your general practice can be an excellent choice.
Listen to the full podcast episode I did with Dr. Mike DiTolla.