Snap-On Smiles: How They Work & Costs

What is a Snap-On Smile®?

A Snap-On Smile is a patented and easy way to achieve an attractive "Hollywood smile." They are also called "temporary" or "removable" veneers.

They provide patients with an affordable smile makeover. For many patients,  Snap-On teeth give them confidence because they look similar to natural teeth.

A Snap-On Smile fits over your own teeth, offering a natural-looking smile. The removable veneers cover any teeth that are stained or chipped, as well as gaps or missing teeth.

They are thin, durable, and made of hi-tech dental resin. Snap-On Smiles are comfortable alternatives that can help people avoid the discomfort of complex and invasive dental procedures.

The Snap-On Smile process takes place at a dental office. It takes two visits and consists of three steps:

  1. The dentist takes an impression of your teeth and send it to a lab.
  2. The lab technicians make a custom-fitted set of removable veneers and mail them back to your dentist.
  3. The dentist makes sure the veneers fit on your teeth

Users can eat and drink wearing the device, and it’s easy to care for. Depending on the patient, a Snap-On Smile can be a temporary or long-term cosmetic solution. The product is available for the upper and lower teeth.

The method of achieving a Snap-On Smile involves two painless visits. You must pick the style and shade of your new smile. Then, your dentist produce impressions of your teeth. In about three weeks, you will return to your dentist for a final fitting.

Snap-On Smiles do not require drilling, shots, or adjustments in tooth structure. Cleaning your device is simple using their proprietary formula cleaning solution.

Pros and Cons of Snap-On Smiles

Here are the advantages and disadvantages of Snap-On Smiles:

PROS
  • Affordable alternative to traditional veneers
  • Do not require removal of tooth structure before placement (painless)
  • Removable devices that are easy to clean
  • Improves the appearance of your smile
CONS
  • Can be uncomfortable and is more prone to stains/breakage than traditional veneers
  • Increase the risk for cavities and other oral health issues
  • Should never be used in replacement of necessary dental work and orthodontics (like braces)

Cost of Snap-On Smiles

Generally, a Snap-On Smile costs between $1,000 to $3,500 or more per upper or lower arch. Some dentists may charge as low as $500 to $1,000 per arch.

The cost of Snap-On Smiles varies. It depends on the size, shape, and style of the teeth, as well as the dentist. Prices can differ significantly between dentists, even those in the same location.

Alternatives to Snap-On Smiles

Alpha Veneers, Removable Veneers USA, TruSmile, and instasmile are direct-to-consumer companies that provide custom-made clip-on (removable) veneers.

The treatment process is very similar to Snap-On Smile, but these companies ship you an impression kit at home. Your impressions still go to a professional dental lab, then the finished veneers are sent to your home.

These cost between $250 and $500 per arch. The price depends on whether you choose an occasional wear or a daily wear set of veneers.

Who Benefits From Snap-On Smiles?

A Snap-On Smile is an affordable solution that provides the unique benefits of Snap-On Smile enhancement in a painless way for people of all ages.

The device is an excellent choice for people with the following:

  • Stained teeth
  • Slightly crooked teeth
  • Missing teeth or gaps (fully healed)
  • Anyone who has cosmetic removable partial dentures and wants a more comfortable and modern alternative.

People who need dentures or other dental restorations for medical reasons should never replace them with a cosmetic Snap-On Smile. 

Who Should Not Get Snap-On Smiles?

However, a Snap-On Smile isn’t suitable for everyone. People with the following should not get Snap-On Smiles:

  • Cavities
  • Gum disease
  • Severely crooked teeth
  • Jaw misalignment issues
  • Damaged, chipped, or broken teeth
  • Other oral conditions

Those with the above conditions require professional dental restorations or orthodontic treatment. These procedures can include braces, clear aligners, cavity fillings, gum disease treatment, dental crowns, and dental implants.

Do Snap-On Smiles Really Work?

Snap-On Smiles are an affordable and convenient way to 'cover up' dental problems, fix gaps, and improve aesthetics. However, these devices should never be used in replacement of necessary dental work and orthodontics (like braces).

Risk Factors of Snap-On Smiles

Snap-On Smile teeth can negatively affect your oral health. Some of the risk factors of Snap-On Smiles include:

Increased Risk of Plaque

Due to the gap between snap-on teeth and your natural teeth, dental plaque can spread easily from tooth to tooth.

Increased Risk of Decay

When wearing a Snap-On Smile, your saliva doesn’t wash away bacteria as quickly as it usually would. This leads to an increased risk of tooth decay due to the collection of bacteria trapped between your natural and snap-on teeth.

Discomfort

Sometimes Snap-On Smiles can feel uncomfortable when fitted in the mouth. Inserting and removing Snap-On Smile teeth can also be difficult.

Softening of the Snap-On Smile Teeth

You cannot consume hot liquids while wearing snap-on teeth. This is because the heat will soften the device. This can make snap-on teeth unusable during social events where users would like to feel confident with their smiles.

Poor Quality

Snap-On Smiles wear down over time. They are also not as strong, durable, and protective as professional dental restorations. If you are concerned about quality, it is essential to invest in high-quality restorations, such as dentures. 

Alternative Dental Treatments

A Snap-On Smile isn’t for everyone, and there are various alternatives to create a beautiful smile. These include:

Veneers 

Veneers are a cosmetic dentistry procedure that improves the appearance of teeth. They are thin, customized shells that cover the front of your teeth to change their color, shape, and/or size. Veneers are made of either ceramic porcelain or composite resin. 

Porcelain veneers tend to look more natural than composite veneers and Snap-On Smiles. They also last longer than snap-on teeth because they are of higher quality. However, porcelain veneers are more expensive than resin veneers and snap-on teeth.

Veneers are a permanent dental procedure. They cannot be taken out once they’ve been applied to your teeth.

Dental Bonding 

During a dental bonding procedure, a tooth-colored resin material is applied to the tooth and hardened with a special curing light. 

This procedure ‘bonds’ the resin material to the tooth to restore or create a perfect smile.

Clear Aligners 

Clear aligners such as Invisalign, Smile Direct Club, Candid Co, and Byte, straighten teeth gently and gradually using multiple sets of clear, thin, and comfortable devices that fit over your teeth. Clear aligners are custom-designed and individually 3D-printed in BPA-free plastic. Clear aligners shift teeth simultaneously, providing force across each tooth. Most treatment plans straighten teeth within four to six months if the patient wears clear aligners every day.

Clear aligners don’t irritate the cheeks and gums like traditional metal braces sometimes do. 

Braces

If you have issues with your bite or the spacing of your teeth, you may need braces. Traditional metal braces correct bite problems, close gaps between teeth, and adequately align your jaw and teeth.

Metal braces adjust one tooth at a time using brackets attached to specific points on the teeth. Traditional braces can take up to two years to straighten teeth.

Most people who wear traditional metal braces are children, but adults get braces too. In young children, braces may guide proper jaw growth. This can help permanent teeth to grow correctly. Straight permanent teeth can help avoid tooth issues later on.

Teeth Whitening

For people who have stained or discolored teeth, a Snap-On Smile is a part-time or temporary solution. There are many teeth whitening treatment options that can help you achieve whiter teeth 24/7.

Dental Implants 

Dental implants replace missing teeth or are used for people who need teeth removed. Dental implants are made of alloplastic materials. They are implanted into the oral tissues found beneath the mucosa, periosteum, and/or through the jaw bone.

Dental implants offer retention and support for a fixed or removable dental prosthesis. 

If you have any oral conditions, jaw issues, or severely crooked teeth, do not choose a Snap-On Smile. Crooked teeth are more susceptible to cavities because they are harder to clean. Snap-On Smiles do not protect against cavities or fix crooked teeth.

Instead, you should speak to your dentist about alternative procedures. These can include clear aligners, braces, and dental restorations. 

Snap-On Smile FAQs

How much does it cost to get Snap-On Smile?

The cost of Snap-On Smile varies between $500 to $3,500 per arch depending on your dentist and the size, shape, and style of your teeth.

How long does Snap-On Smile last?

A Snap-On Smile appliance should last approximately 3 to 5 years with proper care. This can vary depending on your oral health habits.

How does Snap-On Smile work?

Getting fitted for a Snap-On Smile involves two visits. At the first, you will pick the style and shade of your new smile and your doctor will take an impression of your teeth. In about three weeks, you will return to your dentist for a final fitting.

Is Snap-On Smile worth it?

A Snap-On Smile is a relatively cheap and non-invasive cosmetic dental treatment that is ideal for people with stained teeth, slightly crooked teeth, missing teeth, or tooth gaps. Anyone who has cosmetic removable partial dentures and wants a more comfortable and modern alternative is also a good candidate for a Snap-On Smile.

Can you eat with a Snap-On Smile?

Yes, you can eat normally while wearing a Snap-On Smile. However, it can be difficult to chew extra sticky foods like taffy and gum. Getting a set of partial dentures is a better option for aesthetics and chewing functions. However, dentures are more expensive.

Resources

Snap On Smile, 2018,  http://www.snaponsmile.com/

Veneers, Health Direct, 2018, https://www.healthdirect.gov.au/veneers

Tamer, İpek et al., Orthodontic Treatment with Clear Aligners and The Scientific Reality Behind Their Marketing: A Literature Review., Turkish journal of orthodontics vol. 32,4 241-246. 1 Dec. 2019, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC7018497/

Orthodontia, MedlinePlus, 2015, https://medlineplus.gov/orthodontia.htmlGupta R, Gupta N, Weber KK. Dental Implants,  StatPearls. Treasure Island (FL): StatPearls Publishing; 2020 Jan, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK470448/

Esquivel, Jonathan et al. “The utilization of snap-on provisionals for dental veneers: From an analog to a digital approach.” Journal of esthetic and restorative dentistry : official publication of the American Academy of Esthetic Dentistry ... [et al.] vol. 32,2 (2020): 161-170, https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/31916380/

Alani, A et al. “Balancing the risks and benefits associated with cosmetic dentistry - a joint statement by UK specialist dental societies.” British dental journal vol. 218,9 (2015): 543-8, https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/25952437/

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