PlusDental (previously SunshineSmile)

PlusDental, on the market until mid-2019 under the name SunshineSmile, is an aligner product for simple corrections of front teeth. Like all do-it-yourself aligners, PlusDental (SunshineSmile) works without attachments glued to the teeth, so that only simple treatments with tilting tooth movements can be performed. The original idea of SunshineSmile or PlusDental was to approach patients directly from the company without a dentist. Patients receive an impression set and take their own impressions, receive a draft of the treatment result and then order the aligners to be used by themselves. In the meantime there are also 11 German partner practices of PlusDental where 3D scans can be made. At the end of the treatment removable retainers can be ordered from SunshineSmile to stabilize the result.

Like all do-it-your-self aligners, PlusDental (SunshineSmile) undercuts usual prices in orthodontic practices by 30-50%. Since there is hardly any room for savings in production, savings must of course be made elsewhere, and this can only be in the practices – mainly by minimizing contact with the doctor and by having non-specialized dentists provide support. Of course, this can also result in a number of disadvantages. We will see whether the do-it-yourself aligners prove their worth on the market – and whether they will be legally valid, because in states under the rule of law medical treatment may normally only be carried out by authorised personnel. We have summarized our concerns about do-it-yourself orthodontics in the warning note below.


Warning note on do-it-your-self aligner: Orthodontic treatment is always also dental surgery. Who is responsible for accompanying dental diagnostics during do-it-your-self aligner treatment? Who takes care of bad fillings/crowns, caries, periodontitis and temporomandibular joint diseases? Who makes the patients fit in their dental care so that no damage occurs? The care is often not provided by orthodontists, but by non-specialized dentists: who guarantees that they have a sufficient knowledge of the special field of orthodontics?

Since all of the do-it-your-self-aligners do not use attachments (small glued-on buttons for precise anchoring) on the teeth, complex tooth movements are basically impossible with these products. The result will be that the teeth will regularly be tilted (expanded) strongly outwards, which in the long term can lead to receding gums and exposed tooth necks. Who takes responsibility for this?

The care is usually provided via an app. An app cannot be used to reduce the enamel, which is often necessary to gain space, nor can it be used to attach the fixed retainers that are necessary for stabilisation after the end of treatment.

Patients with very simple positional deviations can therefore possibly save some money with do-it-your-self-aligners, but in return they receive reduced care and may pay with limited quality of results and all the disadvantages of remote care. This is certainly not the orthodontic treatment of the future!

Critical thoughts on do-it-yourself orthodontics:


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