Insights from the Active Aligners clinical support team

Insights from the Active Aligners clinical support team

Dr Dan Shaffer and Dr Wayne Hirschowitz explain how Active Aligners can transform your patient journey and deliver high-quality orthodontic outcomes.

What makes us different?

Active Aligners is set up for dentists, by dentists and offers a more bespoke aligner experience. We pride ourselves on delivering a high level of support and personal customer service, encouraging dentists to engage directly with us when the need arises.

Active Aligners accept all scans as well as PVS impressions. In addition, our laboratory fees are lower than many competitors so we deliver a cost-effective solution without compromising quality.

Why work with Active Aligners? 

We have done the hard work of smoothing the clear aligner journey for you, your team and your patients. We consider everything from case selection and approval through to delivery. 

When we identify areas for improvement that enhance the user experience, we incorporate them; our switch to soft templates is an example of our flexibility. 

Our clinical team can offer opinions on aspects of the patient journey to enable greater levels of dentist and patient satisfaction. We are expanding our business and brand with a clear focus on delivering high-quality orthodontic outcomes for clinicians and great smiles for their patients. 

‘I just want my day to be easier. Modern dental practise is so full of pressure, every single day. It is great that I have finally found an aligner company that helps me achieve great results with the right support on-hand when I need it.’

Dr J.Sacker – London

What does it mean to have a professional colleague support you?

If you are just starting your clear aligner journey, we are here to help. From IPR and the placing of attachments through to advice on the selection of clinically appropriate cases, our team provides the level of support you need.

As an experienced provider, we can support you through more complex cases such as the use of aligners following fixed orthodontics, when managing prosthodontically challenging cases or optimising tooth position for implant placement.

When you need help troubleshooting or are faced with a dilemma, having rapid access to a clinical colleague gives you peace of mind and confidence with the minimum of disruption for you, your practice and your patients.

Tales from the bench one:

Dan Shaffer – clinical director

A dentist, one of our UK providers, contacted me via Whatsapp to ask for advice. The case he was treating had seemed to have stalled three quarters of the way through treatment.

It was not tracking as expected. After requesting an updated scan, I sent a short video through overlaying the original and new scans. I was able to identify that inadequate IPR caused the lack of space required for further movements and offered a clear explanation of how further IPR could ‘unlock’ the case.

On measuring the space available, the dentist agreed that his IPR had been cautiously conservative and carried out further IPR according to the prescription. The case proceeded to successful completion and avoided the need for refinement.

‘When I asked Dan for help with a poorly tracking case, he created two digital templates that identified I had performed insufficient IPR. His advice helped me to correct the issue without needing full refinement. I really appreciated the support’ – Dr Michelle Wyngaard, Norfolk.

Tales from the bench two:

Dr Wayne Hirschowitz (clinical adviser)

I was sent images of a patient’s malocclusion and asked ‘is this suitable for aligner treatment?’ Many dentists are worried about patient suitability for aligner treatments. This dentist was a new provider and needed reassurance about what kind of cases are going to work.

After initial consideration and review I decided that this case would most probably lead to a suboptimal clinical outcome. I pointed the dentist to the virtual treatment simulation and encouraged them to share it with their patient so that they could review it together.

This then opened up the discussion and shared decision making process so the patient would be more informed about  the clinical outcome that would closer match their expectations.

Our friendly, clinical team is always on-hand if you have any questions or need some advice. Our goal is to help you identify the cases that are most likely to work, make your daily practice easier and give greater satisfaction to your patients.

Active Aligners help dentists to identify case suitability based on their experience and complexity. Our protocols have pre-set parameters that only allow appropriate cases to be selected. Each is unique and reviewed by one of our expert treatment planners.

They examine each case on its clinical merits and determine if it is mild, moderate or advanced. However, if it is too complex to succeed, we will let you know that referral to an orthodontic expert would be advisable.

Tales from the bench three:

The two most common queries we have are regarding the use of rigid templates for composite attachments and the initial insertion of aligners being difficult for patients.

When experienced practitioners encounter a problem with a composite attachment template, they might section it or be confident to use greater force for insertion. In response to feedback and after consultation with our resident orthodontic expert Dr Sunil Hirani, we started to provide an easier alternative.

Now, all of our composite attachment placement templates are made of a more flexible, softer material that enables easier insertion and clinical application when used in conjunction with flowable composite.

Patients can also find it difficult to insert their aligners, especially at the beginning of their Active Aligners journey. The inclusion of chewies in the patient pack makes it easier for the patients to self manage this common and easily resolvable issue.

‘With my first case, the initial aligner refused to fit correctly. I spoke to Wayne who explained the correct path of insertion, guided me to encourage the patient to use adequate pressure and utilise the chewies to seat the aligner fully. I can now approach my next case with confidence’ – Dr Shandon Weinstein, London.

Tales from the bench four:

On a number of occasions, we get asked about an accidentally lost aligner. A common question with an easy solution. The clinical implications of a lost aligner are significant as, if a replacement is not inserted within a short time period, relapse would most certainly occur. 

Some aligner companies would advise to revert to the previous aligner. This has the advantage of holding the tooth position until a replacement can be provided. We go one stage further and more often than not, use our UK based laboratory to provide a replacement by next day delivery.

After all, we hold the digital file in our archive, we have 3D print facilities and are able to provide a fast efficient service to all of our providers. 

We are glad that as dentists we are leading the way for the Active Aligners clinical team. 

We have examined our own interactions with multiple companies in the dental industry and have revisited many of the negative experiences we have encountered. By considering poor customer service, we have found ways to examine problems and generate solutions.

Big benefits

Perhaps the most enjoyable part of our role is meeting and speaking with the many practitioners and team members. We find that educating the entire team reaps big benefits.

In terms of the service that we provide, we often get taken up on our offer to visit our providers’ practices to introduce the digital workflow and integrate Active Aligners into their clinics.

Modern dental care is team care. Patients will often ask team members questions. If they can answer them in a fluent way, giving the right information, at the right time, in the right style, you are sure to manage your patients expectations in a more efficient manner.

We hope that this article has given you an insight into how we can make a difference.

For dentists, by dentists, is the central philosophy of our company and that is why, when you start providing Active Aligners in your practice, we can help you make smiles perfectly simple.

For more information visit

Get the most out of your membership by subscribing to Dentistry CPD
  • Access 600+ hours of verified CPD courses
  • Includes all GDC recommended topics
  • Powerful CPD tracking tools included
Register for webinar
Add to calendar