(Note – nothing in this post has anything to do with our practice. We do not know this patient and had nothing to do with her getting a refund. The person who wrote this post for us is not even in our office but is a remote free-lance writer that we have hired. We know nothing more about this case other than what is written here. The information is very helpful, but if you call us for more details, we regret that we will be unable to help you.)
In June 2018, I decided to get Invisalign to correct my midline and make room for veneers on my right and left lateral incisors to alter the shape. My dentist recommended Invisalign for 8 months. I finished the treatment, but my midline still wasn’t in the middle. So, my dentist ordered a new set of trays with the target of being completed in October 2019. And my midline still isn’t correct. Now I feel like I’ve wasted time and money.
My dentist admits that he is puzzled and can’t give me a reason that this isn’t working. I’ve paid over $4500 for treatment that didn’t work, and I still can’t get porcelain veneers until my midline is correct. Last month I had a consultation with an orthodontist, and she says that Invisalign won’t work for my case. She recommends low-profile braces instead. How do I get a refund? – Alayna from Huntsville, AL
Moving a midline can be complicated, and is probably not a case for Invisalign. Invisalign (or ClearCorrect, which we prefer) is an excellent treatment, but the company itself emphasizes that it isn’t right for every case where teeth need to be moved, and this is one of those cases where traditional braces are probably better. Invisalign leverages one tooth against another to straighten them. But moving a midline requires moving all the teeth in one direction.
Having said that, Invisalign and other types of invisible braces are often downplayed by orthodontists. Sometimes it’s because general and cosmetic dentists receive training to place non-traditional braces, and orthodontists are protective of their status and specialty.
At times traditional braces are the most predictable way to move teeth, but invisible braces also work if you’re willing to accept the limitations. Many patients who refuse traditional braces prefer Invisalign or other brands of invisible braces, even if the results aren’t as exact as conventional braces. They just don’t want the hardware on their teeth. But a dentist, in accepting a case like that, should be forthright in explaining the limitations. It doesn’t look like that happened in your case.
Getting a Refund for Faulty Invisalign Treatment
So you’re in a situation now where you feel like you should get a refund. From what you’ve told us about your case, that sounds reasonable. Here’s how to go about that.
The reaction you’ll get when you request a refund depends on the dentist. Some are responsive and cooperative with refund requests, but others may become angry. Anticipate a negative response and consider the suggestions below.
- Be polite but straightforward in requesting a refund.
- If you are turned down, ask your new dentist or orthodontist to call and request a refund for you. If your Invisalign provider recognizes that another dentist is calling for you, it may help him see that your refund request is worthy of consideration.
- If that doesn’t work, tell your first Invisalign dentist that you will file a complaint with the state dental board and follow through.
- Hire a malpractice attorney.
Be polite but firm throughout the process.
This post is sponsored by Steven Brooksher, DDS, of Baton Rouge, LA. Read our Invisalign page to learn why he prefers ClearCorrect to Invisalign.