Invisalign began as company in 1997. Acceptance by specialists that this “crazy piece of plastic” would actually move teeth, took some time to resonate. Even today with over 6 million smiles under their belt, some professionals still haven’t developed a true “trust” in whether removable therapy is the right tool to accomplish their patient goals.
In truth, aligner therapy requires a radically different approach to treatment planning, making it intimidating and difficult to execute without a change in mindset. Removable therapy, such as Invisalign is not easy! One can not simply take an impression or 3D scan and let artificial intelligence create a successful result. It is necessary to possess knowledge and understanding of how teeth move, biologically. Succesful use of aligner therapy requires additional training and practice. This additional training is more extensive than any other training a specialist in orthodontics may have ever learned in school. These aren’t fixed brackets, which have been in common use for over a century now. They’re just different.
Invisalign was a lone wolf 22 years ago. They opened with an “OK” tool to perform minor tooth movements. Orthodontists primarily rejected it’s ability to accomplish the tooth movements desired. At the same time, they began to acknowledge that this is what their patients wanted but the tool just wasn’t up to the task of treating most of the issues their patients presented with. They needed to find a way to make Invisalign a tool they could really use to accomplish their goals of treatment. Invisalign, also realized that they needed to develop their product to better serve the needs of practioners.
Unlike many other product options on the market, Invisalign has spent the last 22 years investing billions of dollars in research and development, working with the some of brightest minds in Orthodontics. The result of which is a product that, given proper training, allows orthodontists to treat patients successfully. Orthodontists can now give their patients what they have been asking for, a beautuful healthy smile, without the “train tracks”.
Nearly every malocclusion and alignment issue can be treated with Invisalign. Doctors can use hybrid plans to address skeletal development issues, where a traditional approach is combined with Invisalign. Extractions of teeth, to make room for severe over crowding, can now also be accomplished predictably, using Invisalign. They have also recently developed and tested a product to be used with young, growing children to enhance their natural development potential. Previously, our only option was fixed braces. Dr. Moles has even ventured to use Invisalign to treat patients requiring jaw surgery as a component of their plans.
Thanks to custom designed “attachments”, Orthodontists can now use the aligners for more complicated tooth movements, like rotations and extrusions. The attachments act like “handles” programmed into the plan to interact with the plastic aligners to achieve those tooth movements. Bites can be corrected using elastics also known as, rubber bands. None of this could be succesfully accomplished without direct doctor care.
Fairly recently, “Do it yourself” methods have hit the internet, boasting cheaper and some even claiming, speedier, aligner therapy options for patients seeking to improve their smiles. Seems like a great idea at first, but something is missing. DIY systems, lack the ability to properly treat most patients, given the absence of an actual, real life, doctor to gather proper diagnostics needed to determine the best plan and an actual clinic to place attachments and perform proper care. There are too many ingredients missing from the DIY recipe to reasonably expect a successful result.
It is common for patients plans to require a refinement. A refinement becomes needed when a patients body or level of cooperation, didn’t translate as perfectly as it was planned. Refining results requires an eagle eye. Again, not available without direct doctor care. DIY can’t refine, only start over once you get to the end, costing patients time and money. If tooth movement is being monitored closely, an orthodontist will catch the slide and immediately refine without costing more! Invisalign offers orthodontists a lot of flexibility in their lab fees. Refinements are included, in most cases, for up to 5 years! So, let’s say you finished and had a bad run of non-compliance with your retainers a year later, resulting in what our industry calls “relapse”. The orthodontist can reactivate your plan and make the needed adjustments without the cost of a new lab fee, saving the patient a substantial amount of money for re-treating their case.
Orthodontists have many options available to them for performing aligner therapy, and yet still predominately choose Invisalign, thanks in no small part to their accomplished level of expertise, support and superior product options.
For more information on how Dr. Moles and Invisalign could help you achieve your goals, request a complimentary evalution at one of our 2 locations in Frederick County, Maryland by visiting villageorthodontist.com.