Having your teeth straightened is not a vain move – it actually keeps you healthier since you get to have better dental health. Looking good is just a bonus!
So, if you have crooked teeth or tooth gaps, why not do something about it?
Adults hesitate when it comes to getting their teeth straightened. They are at that age where wearing metal braces can be very embarrassing. It can affect your dating life and the way you present yourself at work.
The good news is that you do not have to go through the “metal mouth” stage anymore. As long as you have a mild and moderate case of misalignment or gaps, you can use clear aligners!
Clear aligners are invisible and they are removable, making it a more convenient choice for teeth straightening.
Among the top clear aligners in the UK market, Invisalign and PlusDent dominate as being the top brands. The two may look similar but they actually have major differences.
Here, we will compare Invisalign vs. PlusDent under the important factors that you should look into when getting clear aligner treatment.
PlusDent started out as SunshineSmile in Berlin, Germany. SunshineSmile was founded in 2017. It has made its mark as one of the fastest-growing MedTech companies in all of Europe.
Today, PlusDent has hundreds of partner clinics in Germany, Austria, the Netherlands, Switzerland, Spain, Sweden, France, and the UK. They are considered to be the biggest digital dentistry platform in Europe.
Invisalign is the best-known brand of clear aligners in the world today. They have been around since 1999 as the first commercially available clear aligners. Since then, Invisalign has established itself as the most reliable brand in over 45 countries all over the world.
Invisalign is also considered to be the most powerful invisible braces in the market. It can work on slightly severe orthodontic issues – 90% of people who need metal braces can be accommodated as suitable candidates for Invisalign.
How does it work?
The clear aligners from PlusDent are customized to fit your mouth and teeth. You will be receiving your set of aligners in one go, each one having the ability to move your teeth to a maximum of 0.2 mm.
After your 3D scans are sent to the lab, a plan for your treatment will be formulated according to your dental issues. Then, PlusDent will give you a 3D simulation of the plan with the projected results. You will have an idea of how your teeth will look at the end of treatment.
All PlusDent aligners are created in their laboratory in Berlin. It will take about 3 to 4 weeks for them to be delivered to you, depending on where you live. You will receive all the aligners you need in one package so you have to keep them in a safe place.
PlusDent does its treatment remotely so all in all, you only do one office visit and that is to get your teeth scanned.
You will be asked to download the PlusDent app, which you will be using to get notifications and to communicate with the assigned dentist or orthodontist to your case. Every time you move on to the next set of aligner trays, you will be required to upload a clear photo of your teeth in the app.
Invisalign gives you a series of customized plastic aligner trays that are made to fit snugly over your teeth. The clear aligners will then move the misaligned teeth by placing pressure on them.
Every few weeks, you will wear a new clear aligner tray from your set, each one tighter than the last. By the time you are on your last set of aligner trays, you have a noticeably better smile.
If you need more force to move your teeth, Invisalign will not be as invisible as you’d want them to be because you will need some attachments. The attachments will help move your teeth more efficiently and they may be a bit noticeable on the surface.
Invisalign requires you to do office checkups regularly. This makes it stand out among other clear aligners in the market that offers remote treatment only. This way, you get face-to-face monitoring and all your concerns and questions will be answered right away.
The aligner trays for your treatment will also be sent to your Invisalign provider’s office so if you plan to miss out on some office visits to save money, you can’t.
While other at-home clear aligner brands offer daytime and nighttime teeth aligners, PlusDent only has the daytime clear aligners available.
Some aligner brands offer daytime and nighttime aligners. Invisalign only has the daytime aligner so you do not have much of a choice when it comes to treatment options.
PlusDent aligners should be worn for 22 hours a day. The average PlusDent treatment time is between 4 and 10 months.
If your teeth need a lot of movement, your treatment time will surely be more than 6 months. But if you just need minor adjustments, your treatment time can be over in 4 months.
Invisalign aligners must be worn for at least 20 to 22 hours each day. The average treatment time will vary depending on the severity of your orthodontic issues.
For those needing full orthodontic treatment, meaning you have moderate to complex cases, it could take an average treatment time of 12 to 18 months. Mild cases can take an average treatment time of 6 to 8 months. And the lightest cases can only take around 3 months of treatment.
PlusDent will charge you depending on the severity of your case. There are three PlusDent treatment pricing tiers: short, normal, and complex.
The short treatment plan handles slight tooth misalignments and costs £1,390 upfront. The normal treatment plan handles moderate tooth misalignments and costs £1,890 upfront. The complex treatment plan handles complex tooth misalignments and costs £2,190 upfront.
All three tiers have monthly installment plans available. The monthly installment plans give you a wide choice. You can choose to make your installments for 12, 24, 36, 48, or 60 months! That gives you a lot of time to come up with the money for your treatment!
Invisalign has no general rates for their treatment. The amount of tooth movement needed and the treatment duration will greatly impact how much you will pay for Invisalign treatment.
The more work you will need, the more expensive the total cost can get. This is because you will be using more aligner trays, do more office visits to your Invisalign provider, and you may need additional tools like attachments.
To give you a general idea, Invisalign treatment in the UK can cost you as low as £1,300 and as high as £5,500.
Invisalign costs are quite high compared to other clear aligner brands and sometimes, Invisalign can cost higher than traditional braces! But don’t worry – there are ways to get financial help when it comes to payment.
Most licensed dentists and orthodontists will offer discounts or promos that can help lower the price for you. Some Invisalign providers can also hook you up with a third-party creditor where you can loan the money to pay for treatment.
Your PlusDent provider will be able to answer all your questions and concerns during your initial consultation. So, you must do your research so that you are prepared with your questions.
After the initial consultation, everything will be managed through the PlusDent app. So, the free consultation is actually the only chance you get to talk to the PlusDent team in person.
If you have more questions or concerns during treatment, you can contact PlusDent through email.
The good thing about Invisalign is that your Invisalign provider is your customer service. All your questions and concerns can be answered right away.
If you have a concern about the product itself, your Invisalign provider will stand as the middleman between the company and you. They should be able to help you with any concerns about the Invisalign treatment.
A patient is not expected to contact Invisalign itself so when it comes to service, this will depend on the provider you choose.
Pros and cons
- Remote dental treatment – only one office visit required.
- Offers a wide range of payment plans.
- The smartphone app is a high-tech and convenient monitoring tool.
- Installment plans require a credit check so not all PlusDent customers can benefit from it.
- World-famous brand with an outstanding reputation.
- Treatment is available for kids and teens.
- Can handle mild to slightly complex dental issues.
- Expensive compared to other clear aligner brands.
How to start
To start your treatment, you have to visit a PlusDent clinic in your area. In the UK, PlusDent clinics can be found in a lot of locations including Liverpool, London, Newcastle, Sheffield, Nottingham, Southampton, Bristol, Birmingham, and many more. You can check their website for the full list.
The dentist or orthodontist will get a 3D scan of your teeth. The first consultation is free of charge and will only take less than 30 minutes.
PlusDent is a home aligner treatment but it does not have impression kits so you have no choice but to make the one in-office visit to start your treatment. This is to make sure that you get checked by a licensed dental professional and that you are qualified to use clear aligners.
If you have other dental issues like cavities or gum disease or if you have wisdom teeth or veneers, the dentist or orthodontist will not give you clearance for PlusDent.
To start your treatment, you have to get a consultation from an Invisalign provider in your area. Luckily, Invisalign has a large provider network in the UK. You can go to their website and use a postcode search tool to get a list of dental professionals that offer Invisalign.
Make sure to choose a dental professional whose office is near you since you will be doing a lot of office visits while in treatment. Take note that these providers may have different rates, depending on their expertise with Invisalign and this can affect your total cost too.
The Invisalign provider will then give you a 3D oral scan to generate a computerized image of your mouth and teeth.
A personalized plan will then be developed. Using the 3D scans, they will be able to present graphics of how your teeth will gradually move to give you a better smile.
Invisalign does not start with an impression kit like other home aligners. This is a good thing as most people struggle with making their own teeth impressions.
Frequently asked questions (FAQs)
Which is better, PlusDent or Invisalign treatment?
PlusDent is high-quality too. In fact, all aligners are made in one lab in Berlin so everything is quality controlled. However, Invisalign has a proven track record and millions of successful cases to back them up.
Which is cheaper, PlusDent or Invisalign?
But comparing their general rates, we have to say that PlusDent is the more affordable choice no matter how simple or complex your orthodontic issues are. Also, there is the fact that it provides you a lot of payment options to choose from, making the treatment more reachable and affordable for you.
Which is more convenient, PlusDent or Invisalign aligners?
Both brands do not have home impression kits so you have the convenience of not having to make your own impressions or molds. This is a big deal as most people often have to redo their impressions because they did it wrong on the first try. All this back and forth means more waiting time before you can finally start your treatment.
PlusDent has the convenience of letting you be treated remotely. This means you just stay at home and do your updates and communication online. You no longer have to go out and commute. The lack of office visits in the treatment also is a contributing factor to its lower costs.
Invisalign gives you the convenience of not having to go through customer service because your Invisalign provider is your customer service. Since you have to do regular checkups during the Invisalign treatment, all your queries and concerns can be answered and addressed immediately.
Home vs. office treatment plan
Teeth aligners that have office treatment plans are best for those with moderate to complex orthodontic issues. You get monitored personally by a dental professional and ensure that you get quality care.
So, it all depends on what do you prioritize among the two. If budget is more important, then home aligners are for you. If quality care is more important, then you should get a clear aligner with office aligners.
Can anyone get clear aligners as an orthodontic treatment?
For one, some brands have their limitations. An example is home aligners, which can only handle mild to moderate orthodontic issues. PlusDent has a complex treatment plan but it has its limitations as well. Invisalign is a stronger brand and can handle more complex cases.
If brands like PlusDent and Invisalign will reject you as a candidate for treatment, this may be because your issues are so complex that they will be needing a stronger force to move them into place. They may suggest you go for traditional braces in this case.
Other clear aligner brands may also have limited capacities if you have wisdom teeth, dentures, implants, and other dental situations. Your dental history may affect the effectiveness of teeth aligners.
Also, you should know that the general rule is that you need to have good dental health to qualify as a candidate. This means that your dental issue is just about crooked teeth or tooth gaps. You should have no tooth decay, cavities, gum conditions, and other dental issues. If you do, these issues have to be fixed first before you will be allowed to get clear aligners as teeth straightening treatment.
The only way to make sure that you can use clear aligners as teeth straightening treatment is to go to a dental professional and have your teeth assessed. Tell them your intentions to have straight teeth and that you want to do it through invisible braces. They can tell you if the treatment is a good move for you or not.
What happens after dental aligners treatm
For the first months after your treatment plan is over, you will have to wear a retainer all day. This will ensure that your teeth will not shift back to their original place. After 2 or 3 months, you will be allowed to only wear the retainers at night when you sleep.
Before you feel overwhelmed, you should know that this is not a solid rule. According to the American Dental Association, some individuals can wear their retainers half-day but this will depend on the condition of your teeth and your treatment progress.
This will be the case for any other orthodontic treatments or dental practice that involves teeth straightening.
Take note that retainers have to be a custom fit. They also have to be replaced every few months for hygienic purposes.
When it comes to straightening teeth, it is important that you do enough research to end up with a brand that is good for your dental health and needs.
If you do not like fixed metal braces, invisible aligners are the best choice for you among the orthodontic treatments available today.
PlusDent and Invisalign are good brands for aligner treatment. However, they do monitoring differently. While Invisalign requires you to do a lot of office visits, PlusDent will only require an initial consultation in one of their clinics, and the monitoring can be done remotely.
While you get a more personal experience with Invisalign dental professionals, PlusDent will make you rely on their app for notifications, updates, and communication. Straightening teeth is done remotely, with the dental professional assigned to your case monitoring you online.
While Invisalign has the highest prices in the market, PlusDent gives you a wide range of payment methods to choose from so that their prices are more affordable for you.
So, it depends on what you prioritize in an aligner treatment for your quest for straight teeth and better dental health.
Overall, Invisalign is still the better brand but if you are on a tight budget, PlusDent can work just as well as Invisalign at a lower cost for minor orthodontic issues.