How Do I Get Invisalign? Making That First Appointment

“How do I get Invisalign?” is a common question. To get fitted for Invisalign aligners, you will need to work with a qualified Invisalign provider. This is usually a dentist or orthodontist with training and experience with Invisalign products.

If your current dentist does not work with Invisalign (or if you do not have a regular dentist), you can use our handy Find a Dentist search tool to find Invisalign-trained doctors near you. Choosing an experienced doctor can lead to better results, fewer mistakes, and a shorter treatment duration.

If you are looking for Invisalign for your teenage son or daughter, you may want to ask about Invisalign for Teens.

Dentists do vary when it comes to other factors, however. Pricing, chairside manner, and convenience are other factors you may want to consider. For this reason, you may want to ask for an initial free consultation from more than one dentist so you can find the one that’s the best fit for you and your budget. In the end, you will need to feel comfortable with your dentist—the process takes time, and you want someone you can trust in charge of changing your mouth.

Making the First Appointment

Most dentists have office staff to handle making appointments. Simply call the office during business hours, tell them about your interest in Invisalign, and ask for an initial consultation.

(Note that some offices also let you schedule an appointment online.)

At this time, you should also ask if that initial consultation is free. Many dentists do offer a free initial consultation, but not all do. Also, the dentist you choose may wish to make the consultation part of a general consultation, or may want to do it after an inspection and teeth cleaning. Get clear on these details on your first call so you will know what you might owe.

While making an appointment is usually straightforward, there are occasionally issues. The more common ones include:

  • A dentist with a busy schedule (might not be able to see you for a few months)
  • A dentist who cannot accommodate your work schedule (happens especially if you work long hours or night shifts)
  • A dentist who cancels appointments made online or through a service

A little patience might be required on your part if any of the above happen. Again, a phone call has the advantage that you can go back and forth with the office staff to find a day and time that works for everyone—plus, you can be assured that at least one person in the office knows of the appointment!

The First Appointment or Initial Consultation

Your dentist will likely begin with some questions to see if Invisalign is right for you. You may want to think about some of the answers ahead of time:

  • Why do you want to get Invisalign?
  • Have you had braces or other teeth straighteners before?
  • What are your specific problems? For example, do you have tooth crowding? A bad bite? Spaces or gaps between your teeth?
  • Will you be able to wear the aligners for the necessary amount of time per day?
  • Do you have any problems with, for example, tooth grinding in your sleep?

Answer these questions honestly, as the answers will help your dentist determine the right course of treatment for you.

Next, your dentist will want to create a 3D model or representation of your mouth. (Your dentist might also suggest doing this at a second follow-up appointment.) This step involves either taking physical impressions (think making a mold out of clay) or using newer scanning technology, such as the iTero® digital scanning system. The goal is to get a precise 3D layout of your mouth.

This layout will allow your dentist to accurately chart the movements needed to straighten your smile. Your aligners will be custom crafted to move your teeth slowly toward their final positions based on this plan.

The Short Answer to “How do I Get Invisalign?”

Again, getting Invisalign is straightforward once you’ve found an Invisalign provider you like and trust, and who can work within your budget.

So do your research. Find an experienced provider. Then we recommend calling his or her office to schedule the initial consultation. If all goes smoothly, this is a good sign that the procedure itself will go smoothly as well.