Clear aligner treatment is the recent most breakthrough in orthodontics that has gained worldwide popularity. Needless to say, they are not only aesthetic but also convenient, comfortable, and hassle-free for patients, as compared to conventional brackets and wires. Patients prefer clear aligners over conventional orthodontic treatment any day, despite their drawbacks. The material out of which a clear aligner is fabricated plays a vital role in determining the outcome of the treatment. New materials are being developed everyday and previous ones are being improved, to upgrade the quality of treatment provided. These newer materials are created to counter the drawbacks of clear aligner treatment and to provide a more predictable outcome.
Any material used for clear aligners must have certain properties to provide the best results and a positive experience. It must be clear enough, must remain transparent during treatment, and must be comfortable for the patient to wear and remove. Most importantly an ideal thermoplastic material should provide firm but gentle, sustained orthodontic force for the correct movement of the teeth continually in a quantified manner.
Let us find out more about these materials.
PET-G is a transparent thermoplastic that is known to possess the greatest abrasion-resistance among most materials commercially available. It is virtually unbreakable due to the properties of high elasticity and form stability. It is highly biocompatible, hence no irritation or reactions are observed on coming in contact with gums and teeth. This material is not hygroscopic-reactive, which means no pre-drying is necessary with PET-G. It is known to possess no cytotoxicity. PET-G material is suited for the fabrication of not only orthodontic aligners but also for prosthodontic splints, Miniplast splints, CMD splints, Essix retainers, retention splints, etc.
Zendura-FLX is a premium material used for aligner fabrication due to its unique features, which make it stand out among the lot. It has been found that Zendure-FLX is formulated in a dual-shell structure with three layers:
The outermost shell provides abrasion resistance, acting as a tough barrier to grinding or bruxing forces of the teeth.
The inner shell is tough and grips the teeth firmly to exert a firm and sustained force on the teeth and move them in a precisely controlled manner.
Sandwiched between the outer and inner shells, lies the central elastomeric layer which provides elasticity to the entire structure.
The central layer prevents the aligners from getting deformed over time (which is a common disadvantage with most clear aligners, with long-term use due to repeated insertion and removal). This unique central layer allows the aligners to generate a LOWER force on initial insertion, but the elastic recovery provides GREATER tooth-moving forces over a period that is not possible with standard thermoplastic materials, creating a high-performance aligner material that is translated as positive treatment outcomes and happier patients.
So, whichever material you choose for your patients, we will be happy to cater to your treatment needs because we at K-line, want nothing more than seeing our patients smile wide and bright!!