(WSFA/NBC) - When 17 year old Tyler Glover decided to go to Dr. Jared Corbridge for a straighter smile, one thing was clear, Tyler wanted clear alignment.
"Most people have already done braces. I think it just looks better so I don't feel weird because I have braces on and I'm 17," said Glover.
Teenagers like Tyler, make up the fastest growing group using clear alignment for a straighter smile. The American Association of Orthodontics says 4.3 million children and teens passed on the traditional wire braces for the clearer option in 2016.
“Patients love it. They get to eat what they want and visually, aesthetically it looks great and there’s less discomfort," Corbridge said,
Corbridge says for him the clear alignment gives him more control. 3D scans allow him to create trays based on where he wants the teeth to go. Patients get a new tray every week which could help with a potential downside to the process: Trays can sometimes get lost or tossed out with lunch leftovers.
Corbridge adds that children have to stay on top of their oral hygiene to keep their mouth as healthy as possible while the clear alignment works over a period of months.
The average cost of clear alignment is slightly more than wire braces.
There are clear aligners for children as young as 6-years-old but some doctors are still deciding whether they’re the best option for children who still have baby teeth.