Not happy with results of 6 month smile. Should I see somebody else and will I be able to get a better result? (photos)

I had to wear braces for 9 months as top two teeth weren't rotating as he wanted. I've had the braces removed over 3 months ago now and he wanted to finish off the treatment with aligners to finalise the rotation of my top teeth. After he was happy with how they looked i was fitted with bonded retainers and I have to wear essex retainers every night. I'm really not happy at all with how my teeth look and not sure what to do? Do I need the braces on again? Is it worth seeing another orthadonist?

Doctor Answers 3

First, talk to your doc

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The first thing I'd do is talk to your doc about your concerns.  I'm not a fan of "6 month smiles" because it's really all marketing as shown by your "9" month smile that you're not happy with.  6 month smiles braces are used by general dentists and not orthodontists.  Normally, it takes a good bit longer to straighten teeth properly which is why orthodontists don't use these type of braces.  Your teeth definitely look better than where they started.  I would approach your doc with a "you'll catch more flies with honey than vinegar" approach.  Most docs will want to make you happy at no charge.  That's what I'd do.

6 Month Smiles isn't perfect

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There is only so much that can be done in a short amount of time, so 6 Month Smiles should not be compared to what can be achieved with comprehensive braces.  The goal of a 6 month time frame (even the 9 months you got) is merely "significantly better".  I would say you got that.

However, you COULD get "better".  But you must clearly define what you don't like.  Porcelain veneers can also be considered, as that would give control of the size, shape, and color of the teeth, and in only 2-3 weeks.

Did you see an Orthodontist first?

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It would be very surprising to hear of an orthodontist using 6 month smiles. Was your original treatment done by a general dentist? 6 month smiles is a limited ortho treatment used by general dentist typically to correct only front teeth. I would definitely suggest going to see an orthodontist and getting it done right and I would also suggest speaking to your previous doctor to clear things up. I don't think you should be paying for 2 treatments when it should have been done correctly the first time.

I do agree that while your smile has improved it needs some finishing touches that are common practice with orthodontist such as taking progress radiographs to reposition some of the brackets and add needed finishing bends to get the teeth just right. This is one of the major drawback of 6 month smiles.

Peter Sutton, DMD
Houston Orthodontist

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