The current general statement is 0.5 mm of tooth movement per tray equals a total of 2.5 mm of movement in the treated arch using a series up to five (5) aligners. However, the answer actually lies in how many teeth are being repositioned. A rule of thumb is 0.5 mm of movement per tooth per aligner. It is important to understand that the maximum amount of movement allotted to any one tooth is 2.5 mm of movement and canine movement is about one-half of the movement we can achieve with incisors.
There is no “typical” case in orthodontics, but statistically most patients who complete clear aligner therapy fall in the range of 8-20 aligners to achieve their goal. Obviously, those requiring less movement wont need as many aligners and those requiring more movement will need more
Once our technicians input scans into our software, the teeth are virtually moved following the most efficient paths, and this determines how many trays are necessary. This is something that cannot be prescribed or requested.
Proper case selection is essential. For a small fee, our staff Doctor will evaluate photographs, models, or scans of your patient and help you determine if they are an appropriate candidate for clear aligner therapy. If you decide to proceed with treatment for that patient, the fee paid for the evaluation will be applied toward the case fee.
In a prior section we discussed how to submit a case to Smart Designs Dental Lab. Here we want to emphasize the importance of submitting a very accurate PVS impression or intraoral scan. This will ensure the aligners fit ideally. We also require an impression of the opposing arch and bite registration. Sending the opposing arch helps the lab detect possible interferences during the process even if we are only treating a single arch.
Patients generally wear each aligner for 2 weeks. If you find a patients teeth are not tracking properly, they are likely not wearing the aligner 23 hours per day as prescribed, and you can instruct them to wear an aligner longer. It’s always better to wear an aligner for a longer period of time than to shorten the length of wear.
Every Doctor has a different technique for the delivery of aligners to their patients. In general, its recommended you deliver the first aligner and bring the patient back in 2 weeks to see if there are any issues, reinforce they must wear the aligners 23 hours a day, and emphasize oral hygiene. After this, most doctors will deliver 2-4 aligners at each visit using their discretion.
If a patient breaks or loses an aligner they are instructed to wear the last aligner to prevent relapse, and the Doctor lets us know which aligner requires replacing. We can print a new aligner without a new impression or scan for a cost of $60.
Retainers are included at no additional cost following the completion of Staight28™ treatment. It is up to the Doctor if they would like Essix-type retainers or fixed bonded retainers following Straight28™ treatment. Please indicate such on the prescription form.