Invisalign Dentists versus Invisalign Orthodontists in Chicago

When searching for a doctor to provide your Invisalign treatment, one important factor to consider is whether to choose a Dentist or Orthodontist. This article will discuss the differences between a Dentist and an Orthodontist in being able to provide Invisalign treatment in Chicago to you and will help you choose whether a Dentist or Orthodontist is right for you.

The Differences

All Orthodontists complete Dental school, however not all Dentists complete Orthodontics specialization. To complete Orthodontic specialization, three additional years of training and certification are required. Thus, an Orthodontist will have specialized training in cases that will involve the correction of the spacing of your teeth a well as your bite and will be able to custom tailor the Invisalign treatment for you. This is very important to the outcome of your Invisalign treatment. Remember, Invisalign is a company that specializes in the manufacturing of the aligners which they achieve from the 3D model that the Dentist or Orthodontist provides when he or she takes impressions of your teeth at the beginning of the Invisalign process. Once the aligners are made, it is up to the Dentist or Orthodontist to decide factors such as how crowding of the teeth will be eliminated, what the best way to reduce overbite is, how the smile line should be changed, among other factors.  Orthodontists will have specialized training and experience in making these important decisions. A very easy way to find out if the Invisalign provider is a Dentist or Orthodontist is by noticing how he or she tags their name. Dentists earn either a D.D.S. (Doctor of Dental Surgery) or D.M.D. (Doctor of Dental Medicine) degree, while an orthodontist usually also adds M.S. (Master of Science) to their title as well.

Provider Status Levels and Other Factors

While you might come to the conclusion that your Invisalign treatment should obviously be provided by an Orthodontist, there are a couple of other factors to consider as well. One factor to consider is the status level of the Dentist or Orthodontist as an Invisalign provider. There are 3 different levels of provider status: Preferred Invisalign Provider (treats at least 10 patients per year), Premier Invisalign Provider (has treated at least 50 patients total, and 25 patients every six months), and Premier Elite Invisalign Provider (has treated at least 300 patients total, and 50 patients every six months). This is important as there may be Orthodontists that are not very experienced with Invisalign compared to a Dentist who is a Premier Elite Invisalign Provider and works with Invisalign cases daily.

This image shows the different statuses of Invisalign providers.


Regardless of whether you are considering a Dentist or Orthodontist for your Invisalign treatment, a great way to learn whether the Dentist or Orthodontist is experienced with Invisalign treatment are reviews. These can include online reviews such as on Yelp or word-of-mouth testimonials for the provider. Word-of-mouth recommendations are the best review as you find out how the process turned out from an individual that actually received the treatment from the Dentist or Orthodontist.

 February 11th, 2016