While there are many very helpful do-it-yourself or DIY hints and tips that can make life easier, DIY orthodontics is not one of them. Over the past few years, there have been several videos and online tutorials posted by people who've claimed they've “successfully” moved their teeth using objects like hair ties, dental floss and rubber bands.
Many people who are thinking of seeing an orthodontist for braces or Invisalign do some research online about the orthodontic process. Some folks run across these videos and articles that claim it's easy to move your own teeth using ordinary, everyday objects like elastic hair ties and rubber bands which are dubbed “gap-bands” by those posting this information. In one video, a young woman states that there is no reason to spend a lot of money paying an orthodontist to close gaps between your teeth because you can do it yourself without having to spend any more than $5 on hair ties.
We cannot stress enough how dangerous DIY orthodontics is. The only people who are qualified to move teeth are orthodontists. No matter how convincing a video or article may be about moving your own teeth using foreign objects, do not fall for any of these claims as you could put your health in extreme danger by attempting to straighten your own teeth. Plus, you will not get the results you're looking for. Instead, you may end up in excruciating pain and with a severe infection that could lead to sky high dental bills due to necessary oral surgery and/or multiple tooth extractions.
Apparently, the prospect of saving money by moving one's own teeth has struck a chord as some of these videos posted on the internet have received tens of thousands of views. Because DIY orthodontics began to trend online, the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) issued a consumer alert last fall about so-called “gap bands”.
In short, DIY braces are a horrible idea that should never be attempted. The only qualified people who are specially trained to move teeth are orthodontists who have undergone years of specialized education beyond dental school to learn how to safely and effectively straighten teeth and align bites.