As Invisalign— otherwise known as “the clear braces” or “invisible braces”— continues to gain enormous popularity, many more medical professionals across Brooklyn, Queens and Long Island are becoming Invisalign providers, including general dentists. While this may work out for some patients, others have run into problems. As an orthodontist who specializes in Invisalign, I have often been called in to “fix” some of those problems— which, truth be told, is what inspired this blog post today.
Invisalign is a system for straightening teeth, which is the specialty of an orthodontist. In fact, orthodontics is a specialization within the field of dentistry that requires three additional years of training and certification. Orthodontic treatment involves correcting malocclusion, which is the misalignment of a bite, incorrect spacing between teeth or crooked teeth. A good orthodontist has a depth of knowledge and experience to draw from when working with each individual and can customize treatment accordingly. A general dentist does not have the same specialized training and will refer patients to an orthodontist for such services.
While Invisalign is a remarkably easy way to straighten teeth, it is not a ‘one-size-fits-all’ solution. There’s an expertise, knowledge base and finesse that’s necessary when aligning teeth because everyone’s biology is different. Progress has to be monitored and adjustments made as necessary. Although professionals may take Invisalign training for accreditation, some dentists simply do not have the knowledge base or expertise when treatment is not progressing as anticipated; orthodontists, on the other hand, do. That’s exactly why dentists will send their Invisalign patients to me for corrections well into their treatment plan. And that’s exactly why I would recommend that patients who are seeking Invisalign treatment start off with an orthodontist right from the start. You will be working with a professional who can see you through almost any complication that arises while aligning your teeth. Why start out with one practitioner to be referred to another? It can cost you time and money, as well as create stress.
Selecting Invisalign provider levels:
Another thing to consider when selecting an Invisalign practitioner is his/her level of experience with Invisalign.
There are four levels of provider status:
Preferred Invisalign Provider Levels treat at least 10 patients per year.
Premier Invisalign Provider Levels have treated at least 50 patients total, and 25 patients every six months.
Premier Elite Invisalign Provider Levels have treated at least 300 patients total, and 50 patients every six months.
But even if an office has the highest Invisalign designation, you should still investigate further like the dentist in cary do. An inexperienced dentist who works at the same office as an Elite Premier Provider may appear to be at the same level of that provider. Ask questions, be informed, and don’t make assumptions.
As a final point, quantity and experience is important, but you should also consider outcomes. Do your homework. Check out a provider’s reviews online. Find out if he/she has had problems in the past with Invisalign patients, or if he/she has a five-star satisfaction record. A little due diligence now can pay off in the long-run with less stress and a Hollywood smile.
If you’re considering Invisalign but want to learn more, schedule your initial consultation at the office most convenient for you. We have locations in Mill Basin, Brooklyn; Forest Hills and Rosedale, Queens; and Cedarhurst, Long Island.
Our goal is to help create even more beautiful smiles all over New York.