“My dentist says Invisalign won’t work for me.” “My orthodontist told me I’m not a candidate for Invisalign.” My team and I hear things like this a lot at Smile Experience Orthodontics. If you had your heart set on clear aligner treatment, it can be really disappointing to find out that you’re not a candidate. The good news is, you might just need to find the right orthodontist!
If you’ve been told you were not a candidate for Invisalign and that’s the treatment you really want, you owe it to yourself to get a second opinion. In this post, I’ll be explaining why you may have been told Invisalign wouldn’t work for you and what to do next.
How Does Invisalign Work?
Before we dive into who is and isn’t a good candidate for Invisalign, let’s have a brief overview of how Invisalign works. As you probably know, Invisalign and Invisalign Teen both involve a series of removable, clear, BPA-free plastic aligners. When you get Invisalign at Smile Experience, a team member takes digital scans of your teeth and the scans are used to create a virtual 3D model of your smile.
I then plan your Invisalign treatment directly on the model, moving each individual tooth into its ideal place. I send your treatment plan to the Invisalign lab and the lab prints out a series of aligners according to my specifications. The aligners fit over your upper and lower teeth like an extremely comfortable, virtually invisible mouthguard.
Each set of aligners is designed to achieve certain tooth movements. When you wear the aligners (ideally for 22 hours per day), they exert pressure that causes the teeth to shift where we want them. You’ll switch to a new set of aligners every one or two weeks, depending on your treatment plan. As you make your way through the series, your new smile will gradually take shape.
What Can Invisalign Treat?
When Invisalign first came on the market, it was usually reserved for more mild cases like slight crowding or small gaps between the teeth. However, because the materials, treatment planning and our knowledge of clear aligner therapy has evolved, Invisalign can now treat more cases than ever before, including those that are complex.
These days, Invisalign can treat a crossbite, excessive overbite, underbite, open bite and overjet teeth. Invisalign is also effective for crowding and spacing, or gaps between the teeth. With auxiliaries like Invisalign attachments and rubber bands, the vast majority of problems that can be fixed with braces can also be fixed with clear aligners.
Why You Might Have Been Told You Aren’t a Candidate for Invisalign
While Invisalign is amazing, it’s just a tool. The Invisalign lab prints and fabricates the aligners based on your orthodontist’s treatment plan. It’s your orthodontist who actually determines the tooth movements and design of the aligners, so your treatment will only be as effective as the person planning it.
As I said before, when Invisalign first debuted, it was reserved for mild cases. If an orthodontist hasn’t kept up with the breakthroughs in clear aligner therapy, they might still only use Invisalign for certain orthodontic issues.
Also, a lot of orthodontists don’t feel comfortable treating complex cases with Invisalign. It’s not that they’re not excellent doctors, it’s just that they don’t have enough familiarity with the product. That comfort and familiarity comes with case experience. And after spending their entire career using braces, that’s how they prefer to treat patients. When that’s the case, if you have a moderate to severe bite issue, then the orthodontist or dentist will tell you that you are not a good candidate for Invisalign.
Lastly, it’s worth noting that general dentists are able to offer Invisalign treatment. However, a general dentist isn’t a specialist. While they may have attended a few Invisalign courses, they didn’t complete two to three years of speciality training in an orthodontic residency program to become a certified specialist in orthodontics.
It’s during our residency that orthodontists develop expertise in diagnosing, preventing and treating abnormalities of the teeth and jaw. Since orthodontic treatment, including Invisalign, can cause permanent changes to your smile and facial structure, you should see an orthodontist for any type of teeth-straightening procedure. An orthodontist is much more likely to have experience in treating complex cases with Invisalign, meaning you’re more likely to be a candidate for clear aligners.
The Importance of a Second Opinion
A number of our Oak Ridge and Wayne Invisalign patients actually started treatment with us after coming in for a second opinion. That’s right, they were told they were not a candidate for Invisalign by another doctor. However, my team and I were able to achieve outstanding results for them with clear aligners.
Many orthodontists offer free consultations, so you really have nothing to lose by getting a second opinion. Try to find an Invisalign doctor with significant experience who’s proficient enough with the product to feel comfortable treating a case like yours. Check out the orthodontist’s website bio to learn more about their expertise and/or look for a Platinum Invisalign Provider badge, which indicates they’ve successfully treated a large number of patients with clear aligners.
The bottom line is orthodontic treatment is an investment and you should have peace of mind knowing you’re getting the best possible care with the treatment modality of your choice. It’s always in your best interest to get a second orthodontist opinion if you’re not happy with the treatment recommendations you received at the first practice you visited.
Schedule Your Complimentary Invisalign Second Opinion With a Board-Certified Orthodontist in Wayne, NJ
As a Platinum Invisalign Provider, I’m the #1 provider of Invisalign in Wayne and Oak Ridge, NJ. This means I’ve treated more patients with Invisalign and Invisalign Teen than other practices in the area. Thanks to my case experience, I’m very comfortable using Invisalign for nearly any type of orthodontic concern. In fact, almost every patient is a candidate for Invisalign at Smile Experience.
Don’t settle when it comes to your smile and oral health. If you’ve been told you weren’t a candidate for Invisalign, schedule a complimentary second opinion at our Wayne or Oak Ridge location today!