Your patients love aligners and so do you! Every day, someone asks me about cheaper alternatives to Invisalign ®. Yes, they do exist, but buyer-beware! The key to integrating these into your practice is simply case selection. With some of Invisalign’s ® patents approaching expiration, this market is exploding in the US and beyond. I believe you can be successful in selectively integrating these into your practice for select patients and cases.
Since the market changes weekly, I wouldn’t do this blog justice to compare pros and cons of products, but feel free to contact me via my website at http://www.StraightSmileSolutions.com for more information.
There are numerous reasons that a dentist may chose to select an alternative aligner company. In my experience, it comes down to three primary reasons:
- Lower lab fee
- Patient doesn’t want attachments
- Doctor doesn’t have a current account with Invisalign® or their account isn’t in good standing.
Before you jump into the wild-wild west of alternative aligner companies, remember, that Invisalign® often runs specials on their Express 5® and Express 10® treatments. Check with your Territory Manager so that you are comparing apples to apples. Also, it is possible to have attachments omitted on your Invisalign ® cases, if biomechanically possible. Just ask your technician. Remember Invisalign ® has spent a considerable amount of research and development into their product. They are literally the “OG” of the aligner industry. If you need support or hand-holding, and don’t have a coach or consultant like StraightSmile Solutions ™, they are the way to go.
If you feel confident that you have a relatively easy case, then try Clear Correct ® or another simplified, alternative aligner company. I recommend sticking with easy, Class I cases with mild-moderate crowding and spacing. Make sure your periodontal condition is healthy and stable. These alternative products may, or may not include revisions/refinements, so be prepared for possible additional, unanticipated lab fees at the end if the result isn’t ideal.
One idea to consider is creating a “compliance contract” with your patient. You may want to clearly disclose your terms and conditions for aligner treatment in your practice. What is included? What isn’t included? Often, practices access a fee for additional aligners, revisions, refinements or retainers. This can be a point of frustration for patients nearing the end of aligner treatment. It’s good practice to disclose your fees upfront and have patients agree to them.
Most importantly, have fun! Creating beautiful smiles is the reason we all got into dentistry in the first place! When you pick your cases wisely and treatment plan effectively, you will create success for your patients.
StraightSmile Solutions is the future of orthodontic coaching. We are the first online portal to provide a doctor-to-doctor consulting service that will allow GP’s and their teams to access the knowledge and expertise of an industry expert, in order to enhance information sharing and efficiency in problem solving. I hope to revolutionize orthodontic coaching. As compared to other orthodontic coaching service providers, StraightSmile Solutions is a full-time business. We are independent and not run alongside a clinical practice. We commit our full energy to coaching, and YOU reap the benefits! We pride ourselves on lightning-fast service and responsiveness. StraightSmile Solutions is time and cost-efficient. Our services are available exclusively online. Of the over 128,000 general dentists in the U.S., most have little to no formal educational training in orthodontics. Those who do seek training often have to resort to expensive and time-consuming weekend services. You learn on the job through trial and error, but those errors can be expensive and unfortunate for both patients and doctors. We aim to fill the gap in the market for quality and efficient coaching to provide valuable solutions for doctors and their teams, and subsequent positive outcomes in the quality of patient care. About the author: Dr. Amanda Wilson is an Orthodontist and the founder of StraightSmile Solutions. For more information, visit www.StraightSmileSolutions.com.