After Doing Full Invisalign Treatment, What Does It Mean to Need a "Refinement"?

After almost completing the full Invisalign tray treatment, I am wearing #15's (17 trays total for upper and lowers) but specifically for a front tooth that was pushed up into the gum, from crowding of other teeth. So, my front tooth still has not come down all the way to be levelled with my other front tooth. The dentist said I would need a "refinement." What does that involve? More impressions? And, will I have to pay $6,800 again, as I don't have the funds.

Doctor Answers 9

Refinement for invisalign

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Invisalign is very accurate in predicting tooth movement but sometimes at the end of a treatment a few more trays are needed to finish the case prior to retainers. You have a full case so refinements should be free.

It sounds like the tooth needs to be pulled down so it would be best for your dentist to add a button attachment or even elastics.

New York Dentist

Invisalign refinement

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There should not be additional fees to do this refinement.  It may just require a few extra trays or perhaps another impression as well.  You should know, however, that moving a tooth vertically is something Invisalign is not always good at.  Some other means may be needed, such as wearing rubber bands attached to buttons on the teeth, or even braces.

Brian Povolny, DDS, PhD
Seattle Orthodontist

Allows final details to be corrected

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A refinement is sometimes necessary to complete a case if it is not ideal after going through the first set of aligners. It recaptures the teeth and allows final details to be corrected.

Zach Casagrande, DDS, MS, PC
Ashburn Orthodontist

Invisalign refinement is part of the process

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It is common to do "refinement" and/or "mid-course correction" with Invisalign since one or more teeth may not "track" exactly as planned. Usually this does require new impressions and re-submission to the Invisalign laboratory so the new series of aligners can be planned in detail . In most orthodontic practices it is assumed that more than one aligner series will be required for each patient so the fee takes that in to account. I doubt you will incur additional costs for "refinement", but it never hurts to ask!

R. William McNeill, DDS, MS
Mercer Island Orthodontist

Refinement for Invisalign

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A refinement is usually included in a full case. These are cases with more than 10 trays per arch. More than one refinement is not unusual especially for more difficult cases. I see approximately 20 percent of my cases required refinements. Invisalign will charge a fee for refinements that are pass the deadline for refinements.

Daniel C. Huang, DDS
Newport Beach Dentist

Invisalign refinement very common

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It's very common to require a refinement at the end of Invisalign treatment.  As I explain to my patients, the computer simulation can only give an estimate as to how well your teeth will move.  Many factors affect the final result. A refinement is just continued treatment to really "fine tune" the final result.  In my office, refinements are included in the original cost-there is no additional charge.  The only time this doesn't apply is if the patient told me he liked the final result, disappeared for over a year and then decided he wanted a refinement.  In that case, I would figure out a reasonable fee for the added treatment.

Gerilyn Alfe, DMD
Chicago Dentist

Invisalign refinement

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Most cases need refinement.  It is simply tweaking the last little bits after completing the main course of treatment. Usually at the end of treatment, the result is pretty good, but can almost always be a little better.  These are free aligners that take you the rest of the way.

John Whittemore, DDS
Memphis Dentist

Invisalign refinement is just fine tuning

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It is very common for an Invisalign case to need some fine tuning (refinement).  This simply means some new aligners to finish the job, and quite often this is included in the orignal fee.  If MANY refinements are needed, there may be an additional fee, but it would not be the full Invisalign fee.

Refinement is included

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A refinment is the term used by Invisalign to mean the you are going to get more aligners based on new inpressions. There should be no new fees associated with this. It is a common part of the Invisalign treatment to refine a case. You may recieve a few or many aligners depending on how much there is to correct.

Deborah Petronio, DDS
East Aurora Dentist

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.