History of InvisalignInvisalign are clear orthodontic appliances that are used as a solution to misaligned teeth, spacing problems, crowded teeth, bite problems, and gapped teeth. The creation of Invisalign stemmed back when Zia Chishti, a Stanford student, discovered that a set of retainers can function similarly to traditional braces. Chishti assembled partners, created the Invisalign system, and piqued the interest of huge corporations. In 1997, Align Technology was established and in 1998, Invisalign was introduced to the market. Invisalign has gained in popularity over the years due to its numerous advantages over braces and is now a widely utilized and well-received orthodontic procedure.

Who Invented Invisalign Aligners?

While having orthodontic treatment himself, a Stanford student named Zia Chishti developed the basic concept for the Invisalign system in the mid-1990s. Chishti got a retainer and had his braces removed. Then he realized that a set of retainers could serve the same purpose as traditional braces while also being removable. Within a few years, Chishti established Align Technology with fellow Stanford student Kelsey Wirth and technical co-founders Brian Freyburger and Apostolos Lerios.

How was Invisalign Created?

After establishing Align Technology and recruiting investors, the four founders began developing the technology underpinnings of the Invisalign system in a garage in Menlo Park, California. The essential computer programming was built thanks to a campus lab that the four initial developers had access to after a lot of hard work that included doing thorough study in CAD modeling and applying cutting-edge computer imaging as well as 3D printing technology to produce the clear aligners. By 1998, Align Technology had acquired FDA approval for Invisalign, ushering in a new and revolutionary technique to straighten teeth. Through the use of an original system of “incremental retainers,” the four founders created the groundbreaking sequence of removable clear aligners that would become Invisalign’s trademark.

Was Invisalign Accepted by Orthodontists?

Orthodontists were skeptical when Invisalign first entered the market because the founders lacked orthodontic experience and credentials. Braces have also been the primary orthodontic treatment for many years. Most orthodontists were doubtful of the effectiveness of the plastic Invisalign aligners. However, in 2000, Align Technology launched a spectacular $31 million television advertising campaign that successfully brought Invisalign to the public’s attention. As a result of the media attention, Invisalign treatment was immediately approved as a regular orthodontic procedure by orthodontists. According to a study published in the American Journal of Orthodontics, over 75% of orthodontists in the United States underwent Invisalign training in 2000 alone.

What Change Did Invisalign Bring in Orthodontics?

Invisalign being removable while remaining as effective as metal braces is the most significant improvement in orthodontics to date. Invisalign aligners can be removed when eating, brushing, and flossing for the patient’s convenience and comfort. Furthermore, Invisalign is a less noticeable approach to straightening teeth, unlike traditional braces. Patients who do not wish to wear noticeable metal braces can now straighten their teeth with Invisalign aligners. Invisalign has alleviated many of the most common issues associated with traditional braces. Align Technology has also created Invisalign Teen, a set of transparent aligners designed exclusively for teenagers. Invisalign is now available to younger patients aside from adults, for whom the orthodontic devices were originally designed.

How Successful is Invisalign Today?

Invisalign is now a well-known and popular orthodontic procedure for treating malocclusions and straightening teeth. Align Technology boasts about 3,000 employees and generates over $560 million in revenue per year. Invisalign is immensely popular when compared to traditional braces, especially among adult patients whose jobs necessitate regular client meetings. Furthermore, celebrities have used Invisalign to discreetly straighten their teeth because they receive more attention than the general public. Famous personalities who have worn Invisalign aligners include Justin Bieber, Oprah Winfrey, Khloe Kardashian, Tom Cruise, and Zac Efron.

The popularity of Invisalign stems mostly from the many benefits it provides over traditional braces. Discover more about the 7 Benefits of Invisalign Treatment and why millions of people use Invisalign aligners.