Underbite is a common dental condition in which the lower teeth sit too far forward in the mouth. It’s not a serious health concern, but an underbite can speed up enamel erosion and cause jaw pain or difficulty chewing. Medical concerns aside, some people say their underbite makes them feel less than 100% comfortable with their smile.
Home teeth alignment is quickly becoming one of the most popular treatments for mild-to-moderate underbite. Companies like SmileDirectClub design their treatment plans to be super discreet and affordable, so they’re well worth considering. In this guide, we’ll discuss the types of underbite home aligners can correct, which home aligner companies are best-suited to treat bite issues, and some alternative methods if home aligners aren’t right for you.
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How Do Home Teeth Aligners Work?
Home teeth aligners are exactly what they sound like: aligners designed to treat dental concerns from home, without the added cost or hassle involved in traditional orthodontic treatment. But what does the process of home teeth alignment actually entail?
To get the ball rolling, you’ll usually take impressions of your teeth using the kit your provider sends you (though some let you do in-person scans instead). Then, you’ll mail the impressions back to them for one of their dentists to review. If the dentist in charge of your case determines that home aligners aren’t the right fit for you, the cost of this step (between $49-$99) is fully refundable.
After this step, your provider will design a series of custom aligners based on your impressions, and get them to you within about one month. From there, it’s up to you to keep up with the treatment plan (wearing your aligners for the required amount of time each day, keeping up with oral hygiene, progressing through the series of aligners as prescribed) to make sure you get the results you were promised!
Are Home Teeth Aligners Effective for Underbite?
In some cases, yes! Although home aligners are known to be most effective for straightening teeth and fixing spacing problems, they’re often capable of correcting bite misalignments as well. It all depends on the nature and severity of the bite issue.
When it comes to underbite, some cases are dental in nature, meaning the issue is caused by a misalignment of the teeth alone. Others are skeletal in nature, which means the underbite is the result of misaligned jaws. The condition also varies in severity (mild, moderate, or severe) depending on the degree to which the bottom teeth protrude beyond the upper teeth.
If you have a mild or moderate case of underbite, where the lower teeth directly align with or slightly overlap the upper teeth, home aligners could be an effective and affordable solution.
However, if your underbite is quite severe or caused by any type of skeletal misalignment, you’ll probably require a more robust treatment option like braces or Invisalign to achieve the results you’re looking for.
With all this in mind, let’s take a quick look at some of the best home alignment services for underbite.
What Home Teeth Aligners Can I Choose From?
Home teeth alignment is a relatively new industry, but there are already several well-established and reliable brands to choose from. That said, some providers are friendlier toward bite issues than others. For your convenience, we’ve researched and reviewed the best home teeth alignment services for treating underbite, and narrowed down a few that stand out from the bunch:
Byte’s claim to fame is their ability to deliver impressive results even faster than the competition — their average treatment plan length is just 4-5 months. Plus, they put a lifetime guarantee on your smile, and for those who’d prefer to straighten their teeth at night, they offer “At-Night” aligners designed with premium materials to withstand nighttime teeth grinding.
- Byte’s average treatment plan length is just 4-5 months, the fastest in the industry.
- Byte includes their high-frequency vibration device, the HyperByte, in the cost of your aligner bundle. When used properly, the HyperByte can help provide a more comfortable aligner fit and faster dental shifts.
- The Byte-For-Life guarantee provides new aligners if your teeth ever shift.
- Their financing plans don’t require a credit check, so everyone qualifies.
- Byte-At-Night only requires 10 hours of continuous wear per day instead of the usual 22.
- Byte includes aftercare retainers for free.
- Byte doesn’t currently have any retail locations, so you’ll need to order an impression kit to get started.
- Byte’s $1,999 price tag is just average for the industry.
Having a bite issue by no means disqualifies you from treatment. If you’re considering using Byte to correct your underbite, simply indicate this on their “30-second assessment.” Byte treats malocclusions on a case-by-case basis, so they’ll need to review the impressions of your teeth before confirming that their aligners will be able to produce the results you’re looking for.
Candid is a trailblazer in the world of tooth alignment: they’re the first to blend elements of traditional and remote care. Their hybrid at-home and in-office treatment model starts with a dentist visit, where you get an examination and digital scan. After that, check-ins are all completed using CandidApp and CandidMonitoring kit — no additional office visits required.
- Candid has a network of 200+ dentists, with more being added all the time
- Since your dentist performs a 3D scan, you get the skip the goopy impressions
- CandidMonitoring keeps your treatment on track from start to finish
- Candid’s aligners are made from Zendura FLX plastic, making them flexible and durable
- Candid treatment averages around $3,500, which is more than other at-home aligners and close to what you’d pay for Invisalign and ClearCorrect
- Financing varies between doctors, and might not always be offered
- Candid’s 6-month average treatment time is middle of the road when compared to other at-home options
When it comes to bite correction, Candid is able and willing to treat cases of underbite that fall into the “mild to moderate” category. Just like with Byte, a dentist will have to review the condition of your teeth in order to determine your eligibility. However, unlike Byte, Candid has you work with a dentist one on one, so if their system isn’t a good fit, they’ll be able to direct you to one that is.
All home aligners are fairly affordable, but AlignerCo takes it to another level. They offer the industry’s lowest prices, plus accessible financing, all while producing quality products. If your budget is top-priority, AlignerCo is the best bet.
- AlignerCo’s $1,145 price tag makes them the most affordable option in the home aligner industry
- They don’t require a credit check for their SmileFlex Easy financing plan (their standard SmileFlex plan requires a soft credit check)
- AlignerCo uses plastic from Essix in their aligners
- They’ve received consistent praise for their attentive, helpful customer service
- AlignerCo doesn’t have any physical locations that offer free teeth scans
- They use a mixed team of orthodontists and general dentists
- AlignerCo’s treatment often takes 6-11 months, slower than the industry average
When it comes to treating underbite, according to AlignerCo’s website, “it depends on the level of underbite that you have; sometimes with a very simple case, it can be treated.” So, if you have a case of underbite, submit an impression kit and AlignerCo will let you know if you’re a good candidate.
SmileDirectClub is easily the best-known brand of home teeth aligners on the market today. They’ve been straightening teeth since 2014 and served over one million customers to date. With over 300 SmileShops and a nighttime-only treatment option, they’re a highly convenient service.
- SmileDirectClub is more experienced than their competitors
- SmileDirectClub has over 300 SmileShops located across the U.S. where you can get a free teeth scan and skip the impression kit
- Through SmilePay, every customer can receive financing, no credit check required
- SmileDirectClub’s Nighttime Aligners allow you to complete your treatment by wearing aligners just 10 hours per day
- SmileDirectClub has a mixed track record of customer service quality
- SmileDirectClub uses a mixed team of orthodontists and general dentists
- They used to have a manufacturing partnership with Align Technology (makers of Invisalign) but now they produce their aligners in-house
- SmileDirectClub charges an additional $99 fee for retainers after treatment
SmileDirectClub makes similar promises to the other providers above when it comes to correcting mild to moderate underbites. It certainly won’t disqualify you from treatment, but they need to get their eyes on your teeth before moving forward with your case!
What Are My Other Options?
While home aligners are often an effective and affordable treatment method for mild to moderate cases of underbite, they’re certainly not the only option out there. If you find out that you aren’t a candidate for home aligner treatment, or would feel more comfortable with a traditional in-person treatment plan, there are a few alternatives you can discuss with your dental care provider.
Braces are highly effective at correcting adult underbite. Due to the sturdiness of their design and their ability to be paired with additional appliances such as elastics, braces can produce incredible transformations of the teeth and jaw. If you don’t love the idea of having metal on the front of your teeth, there are several types of braces that are much less noticeable than the traditional style. However, braces are quite expensive, averaging around $5,000 (or significantly more for discreet options like sublingual braces).
Invisalign is another highly effective option for correcting more severe cases of adult underbite. Just like home teeth aligners, Invisalign trays are discreet and removable — but unlike home aligners, Invisalign is administered at a dental office. That means your treatment plan can include things like elastics and tooth shaving to help shift your bite into a more comfortable position. However, the cost of Invisalign is significantly higher than home teeth aligners — even a bit higher than traditional braces.
If you’re set on in-office clear aligner treatment, but aren’t sold on Invisalign, look into their biggest competitor: ClearCorrect. Their process is almost identical to Invisalign — your dentist or orthodontist will evaluate your condition, then administer them and evaluate your progress during regular office visits. These aligners can also incorporate attachments to treat severe cases and bite misalignments. ClearCorrect isn’t quite as experienced or prolific as Invisalign, but they charge dentists less for lab fees, and your treatment might be more affordable as a result.
In short, as long as you choose a provider that offers some degree of bite correction (any of the ones listed above), home teeth alignment could be a viable, cost-effective option for correcting your underbite. If you’re wondering whether or not you’re a candidate for home aligners, it’s pretty low-risk to get the ball rolling with one of the companies above. If you don’t qualify for treatment, you’ll be reimbursed for any costs incurred, and if you change your mind after getting approved, you’ll be under no obligation to move forward.
Remember, underbite is rarely a medical concern, and having one doesn’t make you any less awesome. Whether or not to pursue corrective treatment (much more what treatment option to choose) is a very personal decision. As long as you keep your unique goals, priorities, and overall well-being in mind throughout this process, we’re confident you’ll find the perfect option for you. Best of luck!