Are Teeth Filing and Braces Necessary for Invisalign?

I just had a consult with dentist to do Invisalign on both sets of teeth. Is it right that he wants to file off the sides of my teeth as well as wear the retainers?

Also he won't divulge previous customers happy with his service. Is this as dodgy as it sounds? He wants £2800 for the work. Thank you in advance.

Doctor Answers 4

Teeth slenderizing is normal with Invisalign

It's normal to slenderize teeth for Invisalign, but giving out other patients' names is not done or normal. It's called doctor-patient confidentiality. There may be testimonials on his or others web sites regarding this treatment, but those people have given their approval to be listed.

Los Angeles Dentist
3.0 out of 5 stars 2 reviews

It can be necessary to slenderize the teeth during Orthodontic treatment

Both Invisalign and Braces move or change the position of the teeth. In order to do this, in may cases (especially extreme crowding) we need to make more space giving the teeth room to be guided into proper alignment. We call this "Slenderizing" or "Interproximal Reduction" (IPR). Teeth have a memory and are always in movement. Retainers prevent the teeth from shifting back into their former position.

There are a few options that can be discussed with your Dentist. Regular retainers are acrylic with some metal in them and eventually are worn only at night. Invisalign offers clear retainers. A fixed or permanent retainer can also be placed on the lingual (tongue side) of the teeth. It is a small thin wire that is bonded in place keeping the front/anterior teeth in place, for some patients this can work very well because it is bonded and always in place.

In my office I have before and after pictures of satisfied patients who are very happy with the resultsof Invisalign. (and other procedures) For the patients who want to do this we have them sign a release form that allows us to display their pictures and testimonials. Invisalign has a patient case portfolio on the website that can be viewed as well.

Michael Ayzin, DDS
Costa Mesa Dentist
5.0 out of 5 stars 3 reviews

Sometimes IPR cannot be avoided

Slenderizing the teeth often makes the case work, where it otherwise would not, or would be very difficult. We aren't talking a TON of enamel, just "enough."

If the other patients have not agreed to divulge their feelings, the dentist likely CAN'T share their thoughts. It might be a good idea for him to get a few patients opinions to have on hand to share. If you are asking for phone numbers to call and discuss, then I don't know if anyone would be OK with that.

Lance Timmerman, DMD, MAGD
Seattle Dentist
4.3 out of 5 stars 6 reviews

IPR may be necessary; Patient confidentiality may be an issue

Filing, or interproximal reduction, may be required to create space required to allow the teeth to move. It is common with any kind of orthodontic treatment, not only Invisalign. The aligners themselves are needed to move the teeth.

There could be many reasons for your dentist not showing work from or directing you to previous patients. In most jurisdictions, health care professionals are not free to divulge health records. Unless there is a signed consent, the dentist is actually working within the ethical standards. That being said, do your research before committing to a provider.

Best of luck!

Jason K. Tam, DDS
Toronto Orthodontist

These answers are for educational purposes and should not be relied upon as a substitute for medical advice you may receive from your physician. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911. These answers do not constitute or initiate a patient/doctor relationship.