According to ABC WKOW 27, the internet has facilitated a rise in do-it-yourself (DIY) orthodontic videos on YouTube and other social media sites. The American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) has taken notice of this trend and has serious concerns regarding these tutorials.
Many of these users may think that performing an orthodontic treatment, big or small, is okay if they have "help" from these forums, but in reality, they are causing more harm than good. Although these "quick fixes" seem to save time, money and a visit to the orthodontist now, they only end up requiring an appointment with a professional down the line in order to fix both the now-prolonged issue and the damage caused by the DIY treatment.
The AAO released a consumer alert a few months ago, but many orthodontists are still seeing patients with extensive damage to teeth and gums in their waiting rooms caused by DIY orthodontic methods. Some of these treatments can cause "permanent loss of teeth" and "lifelong dental problems" according to the AAO.
Many of these videos are also being upload by young adults and teenagers. Ensure that, as a parent, you are aware of any oral health issues your child or teenager may be suffering from. If they are facing a very real orthodontic problem — such as an over/underbite or crooked teeth — it's important to bring them in to a professional's office for an appointment as soon as possible.
Many children and young adults don't understand the consequences of untreated orthodontic issues. If the area around a tooth is left without adequate medical attention, in a worst case scenario the tooth and nerves may die, causing great pain and increasing the risk for periodontal disease.
If your teenager or child needs orthodontic treatment, schedule an appointment with Dr. Tanya Vaysman of KidsBracesNYC today.