Night Aligners – Straightening Teeth While You Sleep

straigth your teeth while sleep

Nighttime Clear Aligners, or night aligners, are customized and comfortable, clear aligner trays worn during sleep. Because of the lesser hours required for wear, night aligners provide an advantage over their daytime counterparts.

The fact that they’re worn for 10 hours at night vs. 22 hours for daytime aligners means they have a certain appeal.

But is it possible to straighten your teeth with braces worn only at night?

Are they any different from other types of adult braces?

And how much will clear nighttime aligners cost?

In this article, we’ll help you understand all you need to know about nighttime aligners, thus enabling you to make an informed decision. So let’s get started.

What are clear nighttime aligners?

For orthodontic treatment, traditional metal braces have been the go-to appliance for many decades. But because patients are now more conscious of their appearance, many people prefer to wear something less unsightly. This is why many people opt for the technology and beauty of clear aligners(1).

Clear teeth aligners are typically made from durable, BPA-free plastic and work by harnessing the natural movement in the mouth – teeth are not rigid. Instead, they are joined to the bone by an elasticated fibrous tissue known as the periodontal ligament (PDL).

Every time we bite and chew, the teeth move to counteract forces. Aligners are designed to harness this movement by applying gentle and gradual pressure sequentially to the teeth.

To ensure continuous movement, patients are prescribed a series of clear aligners that must be replaced at least every two weeks to keep up with the changes in their teeth alignment.

Although they are removable, daytime clear aligners must still be worn for 20 – 22 hours a day to achieve effective tooth movement within a given time frame. As such, patient compliance(2) is of utmost importance. Night aligners are designed to make compliance easier because patients only wear them for 10 hours during sleep.

About night aligners

Check out this comparison table below to see how day aligners and night aligners differ.

Factors Day time aligners Night Time aligners
Treatable cases Mild to moderate orthodontic cases Mild cases such as cosmetic spacing
Material Super-thin polyurethane Thicker polyurethane
Hours of wear 20-22 hours a day 8-10 hours at night
Fit Custom designed Custom made
Comfort Slight discomfort for 2 – 3 days when a new aligner is first worn Similar levels of tooth movement, but you will be asleep. Therefore you shouldn’t feel it
Treatment time 6-12 months average treatment time 8-12 months
Cost Typically less expensive than night aligners Around 15-30% more expensive than daytime aligners

How do night aligners work?

Night aligners work the same as day aligners by applying sustained gentle force to achieve incremental movements.

Most night aligner brands engineer their trays to be thicker. The heavier forces contributed by the thick night aligners facilitate more significant and faster tooth movement.

Nighttime aligner brands discussed

Now you understand the basics of night aligners, let’s talk about specific aligner brands. While numerous brands provide night aligners, we’re going to talk about four of the market leaders, Byte, AlignerCo, Smile Direct Club, and New Smile. We’ll list all the information right here in an easy reference guide. From how they differ, their costs, and the things you can expect with them, we got you covered!

Byte’s Byte at Night

Overview: Byte at Night
Best Feature Wear Schedule Treatment Time What Makes Them Different? Cost
Efficiency, fastest treatment time 10 hours/day continuously 5 – 6 months HyperByte technology and thick aligner material for better progress $2,295 or $99/month

 While Byte at Night is the most expensive on our list, Byte’s main advantage is its technology-induced, faster treatment time known as HyperByte.

So what is HyperByte technology exactly?

Patients can expect a mouthpiece equipped with a HyperByte pulsing system. As the device is switched on, it omits soft micro pulses that penetrate through the teeth’ roots. Just 10 minutes of gentle vibration each day is said to be sufficient to kickstart or initiate the tooth movement process. When the mouthpiece is removed from the mouth, the Byte-At Night aligners are worn as usual.

Backed by a pilot study(3, Byte at Night patients are said to enjoy significant decreases in treatment length and lower refining treatment.

If you choose Byte at Night, you’ll need to submit an impression kit to their dentists and orthodontists, who will evaluate if you’re a suitable case. If approved, Byte will send you 11-15 night aligners at a time. This is so that their dental team can periodically check progress before manufacturing the next batch. Improvement is monitored remotely by certified orthodontists when necessary.

Byte may request photos of used aligners when you check in, so be sure to keep all your aligners even after you’ve finished with them.

AlignerCo’s NightOnly clear aligners

Overview: NightOnly Clear Aligners
Best Feature Wear Schedule Treatment Time What Makes Them Different? Cost
Affordability 8-10 hours/day continuously 8 – 12 months Virtual smile projection determines if you are a suitable candidate Most affordable, $1145

NightOnly clear aligners are marketed as the ‘affordable way to straighten teeth’. With a one-off payment of just $1145 or $95 per month, they are certainly cheaper than any of their counterparts.

Each aligner should be worn for 8 -10 hours per night, and the average treatment length is around 8 to 12 months – so not as quick as Byte-At-Night aligners, but that’s the trade-off.

Besides the expected longer treatment at a cheaper cost, AlignerCo’s night aligner option offers a 100% remote treatment. Everything from impression kits, aligner fitting, and even treatment monitoring are carried out from the comfort of your home.

Simply receive the kit, take your teeth impression and send it back, get a virtual Smile Projection as evaluated by AlignerCo’s dentists, and receive your customized treatment schedule with your aligners and the instructions for you to follow.

Simple, cost-effective, and ideal for budget keepers, AlignerCo provides cheaper teeth straightening options without compromising on quality.

Smile Direct Club’s Nighttime Aligners

Overview: Nighttime Aligners
Best Feature Wear Schedule Treatment Time What Makes Them Different? Cost
Accessibility and experience 10 hours/day continuously Average of 10 months Over 300 Smile Shop locations to get

you started

$1,950 or $89/month

As the pioneer night aligner brand, Smile Direct Club (SDC) is the largest and most experienced. Unlike companies who trade remotely, SDC has invested heavily in over 300+ Smile Shops located throughout the US, Canada, Australia, and the UK. Here patients can call in and get free 3D smile assessments if they wish. To get started, simply book a visit to your nearest Smile Shop.

Alternatively, patients can order an impression kit for home use. If opting for the latter, impressions are returned to a registered address where a licensed dentist or orthodontist will be assigned to each case. The dentist/orthodontist will create a custom treatment plan for you to follow.

While convenience and choice are what you get when you buy into Smile Direct’s brand, the trade-off is the longer treatment time – averaging out at ten months, even with consistent wear.

New Smile’s At-Night aligners

Overview: At-Night Aligners
Best Feature Wear Schedule Treatment Time What Makes Them Different? Cost
100% remote treatment, best service 8-10 hours/day continuously 8 – 10 months Dedicated customer service, with 100% remote treatment and 1-on-1 video chat available for your concerns $1,195 or $71/month

Get a 100% at-home night aligner treatment completed in just 8 to 10 months! This is what New Smile guarantees its patients. While that’s not the quickest treatment on the market, it isn’t the slowest either.

With everything done from the comfort of your home, the process is simple. If you get stuck or have problems with any aspect of your night aligner treatment, New Smile provides dedicated customer service where patients can seek help when they need it. A live 1-on1 video chat is also available with a New Smile representative should further assistance be required.

If you are viable for night aligners, a dental professional will preview a 3D image of your future smile and have your custom at-night aligners sent to you. The kit is inclusive of teeth whitening and retainers to help you maintain your radiant smile.

Why don’t all brands offer night aligners?

Some well-known brands like Candid, for example, don’t offer nighttime aligners. And this raises the question, why not? Are night aligners not good for you?

Candid’s founder and chief dental officer, Dr. C. Lynn Hurst, explains(4) some concerns involving night aligners from a clinical perspective.

Candid suggest that the inconsistent application of force does not guarantee the safety of the patient and the optimum condition of the teeth.

This evidence has yet to be confirmed.

To err on the side of caution, if you want to experience a safe and successful tooth straightening process, always adhere to product instructions and if in doubt, seek professional advice

What Is The Best Nighttime Clear Aligner?

All factors considered, the best nighttime clear aligner is the one that fits your needs, budget, and lifestyle the most.

If you are looking to get your teeth straightened as fast as possible, consider Byte-At-Night. But if affordability is your concern, then AlignerCo’s NightOnly Aligner is the best for you. Meanwhile, if you are considering convenient at-home treatment, definitely check out New Smile’s Night Aligners. And lastly, for a large-scale company that offers an incomparable experience, Smile Direct Club’s Nighttime Aligner may be for you.

Key Takeaway!

Whatever the brand is, the advantage of Nighttime clear aligners is convenience. Simply pop them in at night before you go to bed and get a good night’s sleep. Easy and hassle-free.

The disadvantages are that night aligners are best recommended for mild orthodontic cases and unsuitable for more complex misalignments. If you’re unsure, it’s always best to get a professional opinion first.


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