Did I end up with generic “knock-off” Invisalign aligners?

How can I tell if I ended up with knock-off Invisalign aligners? They seem to be picking up stains almost immediately. I have a cousin that recommended Invisalign to me in the first place. Her Invisalign aligners are clear and truly invisible. Whereas in less than a week, mine are discolored. I am super cleanly with them. I brush them with toothpaste and a toothbrush every time I brush my teeth. So it can’t be an issue of me not taking care of them. Do you know what’s up? Are they generic? I am not happy with them and feel like I need to confront my dentist. Is there a way to find out for sure before I question him?

– Brooke in Iowa

Brooke,

Thank you for your question. There are a couple knock-off Invisalign companies around. But there is a simple way to tell if your aligners are the real thing. All you need to do is remove the tray and look at the biting surface. There, you should clearly see the trademarked Invisalign name. You should also see a series of numbers which is your Invisalign patient ID number. It should also include information regarding the specific aligner so you know whether this goes on top or bottom.

The staining issue may actually be a result of your attempts to clean them. Although a toothbrush is safe, there are toothpastes on the market that are very harsh and abrasive. These formulas can be so abrasive that they create little scratches on the surface of the aligners. Then the stains are able to easily adhere to the trays. So when you receive your next set of Invisalign aligners (assuming you have the real thing) make sure you utilize the Invisalign Cleaning System. All you need is this system to safely keep them clean, or a toothbrush and warm water as the manufacturer instructions recommend.

Hopefully these tips will not only tell you if you have real Invisalign aligners, but will help you to better care for them.

This post is sponsored by Atlanta cosmetic dentist Flax Dental.

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