Direct-to-Consumer Clear Aligners

With direct-to-consumer (or mail-order) clear teeth aligner companies popping up nationwide mailing clear, removable braces straight to your door, we understand the appeal.

It is our professional opinion that straightening your teeth is safest when your whole mouth, teeth and bite are monitored in person by an experienced and trained orthodontist using the best materials for your health. 

Mail Order clear braces

As a group of highly experienced, board-certified orthodontists who deeply care for our patient's health, we want to educate you about the differences between mail order, self-administered clear braces and in-person orthodontic administered Invisalign® aligner treatment.


Why You Should Choose In-Person Orthodontic Treatment 

Unlike direct-to-consumer companies who partner with doctors to remotely follow patient's orthodontic treatment progress, orthodontists at a local office provide a personal, face-to-face treatment experience. 

At our orthodontic offices, we offer the following treatment supervisions for our patients:
  • An in-person clinical examination of the whole mouth, jaw and gum health by a board-certified orthodontist
  • X-rays, photos and digital scans of the patient's mouth throughout treatment
  • In-person monitoring throughout treatment of the patient's jaw alignment, teeth, bite function, the relationship of the teeth to the skeletal structures, and gum health

Orthodontist monitoring Invisalign patient's smile 


Why You Should Choose Invisalign® Treatment with an Orthodontist

Invisalign treatment is the most advanced, clear aligner system in the world for the best support and every day wear and use. And no other clear aligner is made from SmartTrack material. This groundbreaking technology makes the aligners more comfortable, a better fit, and easier to insert and remove than aligners made from off-the-shelf material, according to invisalign.com. 

How is Invisalign Treatment Different?
  • Invisalign aligners are precision cut or scalloped around the teeth (not cut straight across on the gun line) to provide optimal patient comfort and aesthetics. 
  • Invisalign treatment offers as many aligners as needed to help you achieve the straight smile you desire.
  • With the help of an orthodontist, Invisalign treatment can straighten teeth and correct a patient's bite for simple to complex cases. 
  • Many direct-to-consumer companies aim to help patients who have minor crowding or spacing problems with their teeth. Can the mail-order company you are interested in guarantee aligning your bite as well?

 Invisalign aligners are precision cut around the teeth

Why are Attachments Important for Clear Aligner Treatment?

Unlike Invisalign orthodontists, it is important to know that mail order clear aligner companies do not place attachments on patients teeth.

Attachments are tooth-colored ridges that an orthodontist places on specific teeth to help teeth move more effectively. Attachments put force in the right spots helping the aligners move your teeth, like a door handle helps move a door.

Treatment progresses better and faster with attachments.

Invisalign aligners use attachments


Orthodontists Can Handle Emergencies in Person

As with any health-related treatment, there are risks and potential complications that can arise. And if there were an issue during self-administered mail-order orthodontic treatment, how would it be handled and who would be responsible for handling it if the company and doctor are thousands of miles away?

Orthodontic Associates' doctors and staff are available during and after business hours to meet at the office for emergencies causing discomfort. Plus, during your in-person check ups we specifically look for any complications tweaking your treatment plan, if necessary. 


Consumer Alert from the American Association of Orthodontics (AAO)

Before you decide to proceed with a direct-to-consumer orthodontic company, the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) believes there are a number of factors and questions you may want to consider. An in-person evaluation and in-person supervision throughout treatment can be very important, because there is more to creating a healthy, beautiful smile than moving the visible portions of your teeth.

Orthodontic treatment involves the movement of biological material, which if not done correctly could lead to potentially irreversible and expensive damage such as tooth and gum loss, changed bites, and other issues. 

Read more

OA doctors are members of the American Association of Orthodontics