ALF appliance therapy transforms Richmond, VA smilesTraditional orthodontics is based on removing teeth if necessary to reduce crowding, and pushing and pulling remaining teeth into straighter positions. Richmond, VA dentist, Dr. Olivia Hart, offers an alternative that helps teeth move into place more naturally. The result of ALF appliance therapy is a big, broad smile . . . with some unexpected health benefits.
Understanding ALF orthodonticsAlf braces aren’t really braces at all. This method uses advanced lightwire functionals, an approach that addresses the underlying causes of misaligned teeth. Distortions of facial structures may be a result of genetics, birthing trauma, missing teeth, or injury to the head or mouth. The overarching purpose of ALF treatment is to address distortions of the skull and the maxillae bone that supports the top arch, bringing upper and lower teeth into alignment for proper bite.
The wire device, smaller than a bruxism appliance, fits inside teeth where it is barely visible. The appliance exerts precise force gently encouraging bones, muscles, and teeth to reach maximum functional and aesthetic potential. By reducing cranial stresses, treatment:
- Reorients bone and muscle, making natural space for teeth without extractions.
- Encourages proper tongue position.
- Reshapes the palate.
- Reduces tendency to mouth breath by improving nose breathing.
- Increasing cranial motion.
- May relieve chronic neck, shoulder, and back problems.
Treatment benefitsThere is no typical treatment plan with ALF – it is personalized based on the complexity of your case. It may range from 18 to 36 months, usually in phases. First, cranial distortions are corrected. Then, the appliance addresses abnormalities at the base of the skull. If a third phase is needed, it involves realigning teeth to improve bite and enhance appearance.
There are many benefits of ALF appliance therapy, including:
- Not noticeable.
- Allows more normal eating and oral hygiene.
- Most patients adapt easily, with no impact to speech.
- Less discomfort than traditional braces.
- Results are stable. You won’t have to wear a lifetime retainer.
Who is a good candidate for ALF?In experienced hands, ALF appliance therapy is extremely versatile. It can be used to guide a child’s facial development, bringing the chin out and broadening the lower portion of the face. This avoids a pinched face with a narrow dental arch and recessed chin.
Treatment for teens and young adults may take a bit longer, but excellent results can be achieved. It is never too late to take advantage of the health benefits of improved breathing and bite, even in senior years.
Dr. Hart believes everyone deserves a healthy, attractive smile. She makes ALF appliance cost affordable with flexible payment options and financing through CareCredit.
Would you like to learn more about the ALF appliance? Call 804-381-6238 to schedule a consultation at our Richmond, VA office.