My Patients aren’t tracking with Aligners and It’s taking too long to finish treatment!
In the 15 yrs I have been providing Invisalign clear aligner treatment to my patients, I’ve often found myself wondering if a few of the “best practices” are really all we have to work with. Surely, I’m not the only doctor who wonders what the hell is going through a patients’ mind when I'm hovering over them with a metal strip sawing away at their virgin tooth! Or when I furrow my brow because the next tray isn’t fully seating. As with other frustrations in our profession, the longer these issues continue the less patience I had with them. Completing Invisalign cases was right there at the top of my list. To me, there had to be another practical solution for improving the patients experience and results.
The first change I have made was switching from Invisalign to ClearCorrect by Straumann. Out of the gate, the aligners consistently fit with more precision. The material has a higher quality feel to it and extends beyond the teeth which masks the edge of the aligner. I have finished several cases with ClearCorrect that failed under Invisalign. My patients that have experience with both aligners have stated they prefer ClearCorrect over Invisalign. Financially, I have seen significant savings on my lab bills when I switched to ClearCorrect.
The most significant change I made was switching from Chewies and Munchies to Active by OrthoGum. With Chewies, I was again put in a position in which I found myself wondering how the patient could possibly take me seriously. “If you want your aligners to track better, chew on this piece of rubber, (if you aren’t afraid it will shoot down your throat), take it out of your mouth, put it away and take the dirty rubber Chewie back out later and chew on it again.” With Active, my patients now have an enjoyable option for seating aligners, freshening their breath, reducing pain, accelerating treatment, and cleaning their aligners. Having a gum to chew keeps my patients from taking their aligners out less in the first place. This achieves my #1 goal as a provider! The results I have seen from my Active gum chewing patients has shown to be much more predictable. I attribute patients using active to decreasing chair time, better tracking and happier patients. The cherry on top... Active is 70% less expensive for a patient to chew compared to continually purchasing Chewies at $1.00 a whack.
William P. Paini DDS
Founder of OrthoGum Inc.