Doctors warn: Avoid the temptation of DIY braces

A warning to parents and anyone else looking for an affordable way to straighten your teeth: Stay away from Do-It-Yourself alternatives.

The American Association of Orthodontists says young kids and teens continue to pick up DIY techniques for using small dental bands to straighten their teeth and close tooth gaps.

The results can be disastrous.

According to Dr. DeWayne McCamish, President of the American Association of Orthodontists- some of the tactics people use to avoid costly orthodontic work- end up costing even more to repair the damage.

Graphic photos of patients who learned the hard way- show extensive damage to gums, nerves, and even bone.

"It can be as much as having to go through extensive orthodontic treatment, which is maybe 5, 6, 7 thousand dollars- up to having to have teeth replaced," McCamish explained.

In the worst cases, McCamish says patients have lost their teeth altogether. That results in ongoing expenses for dental work, often for life.

Orthodontists and oral surgeons anyone with concerns about crooked or gapped teeth should deal only with a qualified, licensed orthodontist who knows what they're doing.

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