Dr Monik Vasant on the value of Invisalign orthodontics in aesthetic MI dentistry
Aesthetic dental surgeon Dr Monik Vasant – principal of the Freshdental clinics in Central London and Greater Manchester – has trained under many of the world’s leading clinicians to become a pre-eminent advocate of minimally invasive (MI) aesthetic dentistry and anterior alignment orthodontics.
During his talk at BDIA Showcase in the Dental Update Theatre Dr Vasant presented his ethos of MI aesthetic dentistry, while also highlighting the role of the Invisalign system in his practice and its importance in achieving the best outcomes for his patients.
He began by questioning how orthodontics should be defined, and asking whether anterior alignment orthodontics might not be better described as a branch of aesthetic and restorative dentistry.
In the future, he opined, the ability to successfully move teeth would prove far more useful than knowing how to prepare a tooth for a crown, and listed the main reasons as being: aesthetic correction, pre-restorative alignment, functional/occlusal improvement and improved oral hygiene.
Compelling benefits and “Bread and Butter”
Dr Vasant’s case studies illustrated why moving away from traditional cosmetic dentistry to less invasive aesthetic dentistry using the Invisalign system and adhesive dentistry seemed the best and most natural option for him.
He demonstrated how the system offers a number of compelling benefits beyond improved aesthetics; but mainly the preservation of tooth structure, the health of the pulp, and the ability to have a relatively retrievable problem in the event of the work’s failure.
He explained that Invisalign technology makes orthodontic treatment predictable; is not labour intensive when planned correctly; and, just as important, helps him and his patients visualise the end results before it starts and simplifies gaining consent for treatment.
Dr Vasant advocates the adoption of digital intraoral scanning as essential for the forward looking practitioner, and cited the iTero digital scanner’s virtual outcome simulator as his favourite function, saying: “There’s no delay as it happens chairside, it looks seamless and it’s a great motivational tool, which shows patients what they will look like at the end of treatment, even though it is still possible to make some changes at a later stage.
“Issues can also be identified early and discussed with the patient; which helps managing expectations too. The iTero is worth buying just for the simulator function alone.”
Dr Vasant describes his cases using the Invisalign system as his “bread and butter” because they are “So easy to treat and make such a dramatic change to the end result”. Even so he conceded that the price of investing in Invisalign might raise doubts about its profitability compared to other orthodontic systems.
However, a practice owner comparison cost table he shared with his audience highlighted areas where substantial savings could be made by factoring in the lack of emergency appointments, reduced chairside time compared to the application of fixed appliances, and the predictability of end results plus ease of finishing.
He added that he could delegate some of the work to other members of his team saving even more of his valuable chair time. Dr Vasant stressed that not all of his patients enjoy generous disposable incomes, and that the lower relative cost of Invisalign and composite work when compared with traditional crown and veneer smile makeovers means people from all walks of life can afford it.
Marketing and Invisalign Go
When Dr Vasant asked his audience how many of them would like straighter teeth, over half raised their hands. He used this point to illustrate why there was no need to spend vast sums advertising Invisalign, positing that the system does the talking for you. Why advertise to an external audience, he asked, when most of your existing patients might benefit from minor straightening? Just making existing patients aware that you offer the treatment, possibly by running open days or carrying out complimentary iTero scans and showing your patients the outcome simulation would help plant the seed for treatment.
He presented a complex case following his treatment step-by-step from the scan to using Invisalign’s ClinCheck software to perform a virtual simulation of treatment steps and the predicted outcome. This he described as a valuable communication tool for gaining consent. He then showed his audience how he carried out the treatment followed by tooth whitening and composite bonding to create what his patient described as “a stunning result”.
“Without predictable orthodontics, restorative treatment can be very invasive. If you embrace it along with digital technology the possibilities are limitless.”
Dr Vasant asserted that many patients thinking about orthodontic treatment might not consider approaching their regular dentist, either not realising they offer such treatments or believing it is beyond their scope of practice. Recognising this, Align Technology recently introduced the Invisalign Go system, designed specifically for GDPs, which has already helped over 1,000 dentists treat patients with confidence using Invisalign clear aligners.
Commenting on Invisalign Go Dr Vasant concluded: “The risks are minimal and the support is significant, including the 24/7 Aligner Consulting Mentoring Service which provides the advice of Invisalign experts, specialist orthodontist input, and guidance from case selection to finishing treatment. There is also a referral procedure if a case is identified as too difficult for a GDP to embark upon.”
For more information about the next Invisalign Go course visit https://www.invisalign-go.co.uk/
About Dr Vasant
Still in his late 30s, Dr Vasant is principal of two practices and has been declared a ‘Rising Star’ and a ‘Celebrity Dentist’. He has won numerous industry awards, featured regularly in the UK Dentistry Top 50 and Private Dentistry Elite 20 polls; served on the Invisalign European Aesthetic Dentistry Advisory Board; been a clinical speaker for a number of dental companies, and run one of the most popular postgraduate courses “Totally Composite “ both in the UK and overseas.
He has also authored books, and appeared on TV programmes such as GMTV, ITN News and The One Show.