Invisalign in Calgary: Getting Started

Invisalign is a type of orthodontic appliance that uses a series of clear removable plastic trays (called ‘aligners’) to gently straighten your teeth. These aligners look similar to teeth-whitening trays, but you receive a series of them and each aligner in the series gently nudges your teeth in small increments until they are straight. Unlike traditional braces, there are no metal brackets to attach and no wires to tighten. Each aligner gradually and gently shifts your teeth into an improved position and you pop in a new set of aligners approximately every ten days until your treatment is complete.

Invisalign is the best solution for people who value esthetics as it allows them to straighten their teeth without unsightly braces and the plastic trays can be conveniently removed when it comes time to eating, brushing and flossing. Over the past decade, Invisalign has been used to treat more than 12 million patients worldwide!

Our Calgary orthodontists at Family Braces have completed an additional 3 years of full-time training in the use of braces and Invisalign to correct numerous orthodontic problems.

Family Braces Invisalign

Invisalign vs. Braces:

Compare: Braces Invisalign
Color Metal or clear Clear/Invisible
Treatment Time 2-3 years on average depending on case complexity 6-18 months on average depending on case complexity
Cost $5,000-6,500 $2,500-$5,500
Maintenance  Brush/clean wires and brackets regularly Use Invisalign Cleaning System or brush/rinse in warm water
Follow up visits Every 4-6 weeks Every 12 weeks
Follow up treatments Retainer for lifetime after treatment is over Retainer for lifetime after treatment is over

How does Invisalign work?

Invisalign is a revolutionary new way of straightening teeth and the Invisalign process is completely custom from start to finish for each patient. No two Invisaligns are ever the same!

First, a 3D scan of your teeth will be done at your initial visit to Family Braces Calgary. Our Calgary orthodontists will then take this 3D scan and digitally straighten your teeth to simulate what your smile will look like after Invisalign treatment. If you like what you see, our orthodontists will then submit the 3D scan of your teeth to Invisalign and they will work with Invisalign to plan how each tooth will move. Remember, digital teeth can be made to move anywhere, but our orthodontists understand how real teeth biologically move within bone and they work with Invisalign to ensure that each movement is possible and practical so that you can attain the smile you want within the shortest amount of time.

Then a series of customized clear plastic aligners – typically between 30 to 40 – will be manufactured by Invisalign and fitted by your orthodontists at Family Braces. Each aligner is to be worn for about 10 days, and little by little these aligners will move your teeth into perfect alignment.  Every 12 weeks, our orthodontists will check to see if the movement of your teeth matches the movements they digitally predicted for your teeth. If your teeth move as predicted, then they will give you the next set of aligners. If your teeth do not move as predicted, they will take another 3D scan of your teeth and have Invisalign create a new set of aligners until they get your smile looking beautiful and your bite looking healthy.

What is the cost of Invisalign?

90% of the patients who get Invisalign at Family Braces pay approximately $5,500 or less. This includes the cost of orthodontic records (3D scans, photos, and x-rays), unlimited Invisalign clear aligners, all orthodontic adjustments, any re-scanning of the teeth, upper and lower retainers, and 12 months of monitoring after the end of treatment. Our price of Invisalign is all inclusive – there are no hidden fees at all!

We at Family Braces understand that getting Invisalign or braces can be expensive so we offer 0% interest payments plans and a number of low down payments including some $0 down options to make investing in your smile more affordable.

Doesn’t Invisalign cost more at an Orthodontist?

It is a common myth that orthodontist fees are higher than dentist fees when it comes to Invisalign (or even braces for that matter!).  In Alberta, each dentist or orthodontist sets their own fees according to how difficult they perceive the treatment to be.  Often times, a treatment that may be deemed difficult or complex for a general dentist is very simple for an orthodontist and thus the orthodontist fee may in fact be lower.  We invite you to visit our fully transparent online price calculator to get an idea of how much your treatment will cost.

Benefits of Invisalign

Invisalign, also known as invisible braces, was invented in 1999 for patients who wanted straight teeth but did not want the look to traditional braces to interfere with their lives.

Invisalign has number of key benefits over traditional braces.

1. Removable:

Trays can be removed so that it’s easy to eat, brush and floss during treatment

2. Comfort:

They are much smaller, smoother, and more comfortable than traditional metal braces so patients experience less gum and cheek irritation

3. Gentle tooth movement:

Invisalign exerts less force on teeth so patients experience less pain after each adjustment

4. Esthetic:

Invisalign braces are clear and almost totally invisible, most people will not even know you are wearing them (unless you tell them of course!)

5. Effective:

While traditional braces work wonderfully to straighten teeth, Invisalign technology is rapidly evolving and it can effectively treat a large number of orthodontic problems.   Approximately 70% of all orthodontic patients can be treated with Invisalign instead of traditional braces.  There are even some situations where Invisalign is an even more effective option than traditional braces, such as open bite cases.  See actual patient’s Invisalign stories at

6. Fewer office visits:

Invisalign patients are seen approximately half as many times as patients undergoing traditional braces.  In fact, the average Invisalign patient is seen 8 times in total versus 16 times for regular braces. This is really great for working adults who find it difficult to take time off work.

7. Shorter office visits and evening appointments:

Invisalign appointments are approximately 15 minutes versus 45 minutes for traditional braces.  As the appointments are shorter, it is easier to schedule these appointments in the evening after school or work.

8. No dietary restrictions:

Eat what you want when you want. Unlike traditional braces that cannot be removed, you can remove the Invisalign trays when you eat and thus do not have to avoid certain trouble foods like popcorn, gum, nuts or apples!

9. No emergency appointments:

Traditional braces have brackets that can break, wires that can poke and elastics that can come off.  However, Invisalign is not permanently glued into your mouth and does not have any small, fragile components that can break off.

10. Digital smile simulation:

At Family Braces, we can take a 3D scan of your teeth and provide you with a digital smile simulation of what your teeth will look like with Invisalign.

11. Dedicated Invisalign Center:

Family Braces has dedicated Invisalign treatment rooms where adults can get treatment in comfort and privacy.

What are the drawbacks of Invisalign?

Successful Invisalign treatment is dependent on wearing the trays for at least 20+ hours a day. Simply put, if you don’t wear the trays, then Invisalign won’t work. It’s not like traditional braces where the braces are glued onto your teeth and are at work 24 hours a day from the moment you get them on to the moment they are taken off. If you do not think that you will remember to wear the aligners, then Invisalign may not be right for you.

As well, not everyone is an Invisalign candidate. Certain types of tooth movements which are easy in traditional braces can be complicated with Invisalign. The opposite is also true – certain cases are treated more effectively and faster with Invisalign compared to traditional braces. A consultation with a Calgary orthodontist is the best way to find out if Invisalign is right for you.

How do I get started with Invisalign?

The first step in getting started with Invisalign is to book a free Invisalign consultation with our Calgary orthodontists.  At this appointment, our orthodontists will assess to see if you are a good candidate for Invisalign and if you are, they will take a 3D iTero scan of your teeth and show you a simulation of how your teeth will look after Invisalign treatment.  At this appointment, our Invisalign Calgary orthodontists will also explain each step of the process to you and answer any questions you may have.

Are you curious about Invisalign? The Invisalign Calgary Orthodontists at Family Braces can guide you through the process from start to finish.  Simply book a free Invisalign consultation online  or give us a call at 403-202-9220.

We, at Family Braces, look forward to meeting you!

Additional Resources



3. How well does Invisalign work? A prospective clinical study evaluating the efficacy of tooth movement with Invisalign

4. Invisalign®: early experiences

5. Outcome assessment of Invisalign and traditional orthodontic treatment compared with the American Board of Orthodontics objective grading system