Candid Review

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Candid is a new brand of teledentistry that enables people to access a network of orthodontists who guide patients through a personalised treatment plan. Using invisible teeth aligners to shift their teeth into position, candid is able to transform people’s teeth and smiles.

Remote, online assisted dentistry is an attractive option when you think of the many hours involved in traveling to an expert orthodontist for consultations.  Invisible aligners are also a new innovation that can replace the need for expensive braces, depending on the severity of your dental issue.

According to Candid Co, there’s a huge lack of available orthodontists across the USA with over 60 percent of US counties not having one at all.

Furthermore, Candid says that 100 million people don’t have dental insurance.

These factors can make access to affordable orthodontic treatment a real challenge. Candid exists to provide a solution to these challenges.

Candid’s clear plastic aligners are trays that fit over your teeth to incrementally move them into the desired position, thereby straightening your teeth. Candid Co has a network of orthodontists who design and oversee all Candid customer treatments. Orthodontists are dentists who specialize in teeth alignment and movement.

Below is a comprehensive overview of Candid’s products and services, a list of pros and cons related to their home teeth straightening aligners, a comparison with several other clear aligner companies, and answers to some popular questions about Candid and Candid reviews. This review is aimed at helping you to make a more informed decision about your own orthodontic options.

Candid Co Teeth Aligners & Remote Dentistry

There are quite a few different brands of invisible aligners, and you are probably interested to know what exactly they are and how the different brands compare by reading some reviews. You may also want to find out how teeth aligners compare with traditional braces and what types of dental issues can be fixed using this new technology.

Many prospective customers also want to find out more about how remote dentistry actually works and whether you can get the same level of service as with a face-to-face consultation. Below are some answers to these common questions related to aligners and the new field of teledentistry.

What are Clear Aligners?

Candid’s aligner treatment is a way for you to fix mild or moderate teeth alignment problems or issues by wearing a transparent tray over your teeth that slowly adjusts the teeth in your mouth to new positions in line with your personalized treatment plan. 

After your Candid Co orthodontist receives a mould of your teeth (which you can do yourself at home using the impression home kit – or if you prefer you can get a 3D scan done at a Candid Studio for free), then a series of aligners will be sent to you as part of your treatment plan to slowly move your teeth into the desired position.

How do Clear Aligners Compare with Braces?

Braces are permanently attached to your teeth and can treat a wide range of dental issues. They are typically visible and cost a lot more than teeth aligners and they need to be worn for much longer (this ranges from 6 months to 2 years). Braces can be used to treat a wide range of dental issues – including some serious cases of crooked teeth, a crowded mouth or teeth spacing. 

By comparison, aligners are usually invisible and are used to treat only mild or moderate dental alignment issues and therefore not everyone will be eligible. They usually cost much less than braces and are removable – and some brands have the option of wearing them all day or all night. Treatment time varies but they are usually worn for less time than braces.

How does Teledentistry Actually Work?

Traditionally, people needed to schedule an appointment with an orthodontist or dentist to have face-to-face consultations and check-ups in relation to braces or aligner treatment. With the advent of modern technology and smartphones, teledentistry now offers people the ability to do all of this online and remotely without needing to do any in-person meetings. 

Candid Co offers consultations with their network of orthodontists and check-in via their CandidApp all through a virtual interface. You don’t even need to see an orthodontist to get imaging done on your teeth, as Candid Co offers you the option to do that yourself at home by making your own teeth impressions with their starter kit. They do also provide you with the option of having a 3D scan done at one of their Candid Studios.

Candid Reviews  – Our Verdict

We’ve thoroughly researched information and reviews about Candid. What people really seem to want to know from a review is whether the aligners are worth the investment. Based on the fact that Candid has many positive reviews, its treatment is competitively priced, and it offers a shorter treatment duration compared with many alternatives, our Candid review gives the company’s products and services a glowing recommendation. 

One drawback, however, is that not everyone will be a candidate for their teeth alignment treatment process because it’s designed only for minor to moderate alignment issues.

But Candid does make the assessment process quite easy by giving you the option to go to a Candid Studio for a free 3D scan or to use a home teeth impression starter kit that’s fully refundable if you’re later found to be ineligible. 

They also have a useful screening questionnaire on their website to help you self-assess whether you’d make a good candidate for their products or not.

Candid Co Pros and Cons

When you read a review of teeth alignment products, it’s helpful to see a list of pros and cons to help you make your decision about which product to choose. We have thoroughly searched for information and feedback about Candid aligners to produce a detailed list of pros and cons as part of our overall review.

Pros of Using Candid Aligners

  • Affordability: Candid aligner treatment is well priced compared with competitors and is a much cheaper option when compared with traditional braces.
  • All doctors in the network are orthodontists: this is actually quite an important point because orthodontists are more specialized in teeth alignment issues than dentists – so having your treatment plan designed and overseen by specialists is an added advantage.
  • Flexible payment options: Candid offer either a once-off payment of $2400 or a deposit of $399 with a monthly fee of $99 over 24 months for their aligners.
  • Choice between remote or in-office initial consultation: You can choose to have a free 3D scan of your teeth done in-person at a Candid Studio ,or you can buy the starter kit and make your own teeth impressions at home instead.
  • Supervised by registered professionals: the entire treatment process is supervised by orthodontists, who are specialised in teeth alignment.
  • Accredited with the Better Business Bureau (BBB): the company is accredited with the BBB which provides a level of assurance that it is a legitimate and reputable business that operates according to fair business practices. 
  • Shorter treatment time compared with alternatives: Candid’s average treatment time is around 6 months which is on par with, or much shorter than, many alternatives.
  • Free priority shipping: your starter kit (used to make your teeth impressions) costs $95 and includes free priority shipping.
  • Lots of happy customers as references: it’s always reassuring to read positive reviews about a product you are thinking of buying, especially if it comes with a hefty price tag. We’ve managed to find loads of positive reviews about Candid from smiling customers. There are also a host of impressive looking ‘before and after’ teeth photos on Candid’s website.
  • Full refund if you’re not a candidate: they offer a full refund if their orthodontists deem you to be an unsuitable candidate for their treatment.
  • Dental monitoring app and advanced remote monitoring: Candid has developed their own remote monitoring technology in the form of an app which helps make it easy to track your progress and submit scans of your teeth to your orthodontist. This helps them to accurately monitor your oral health and treatment.  This remote monitoring service means you can stay in touch with specialists from your home or wherever you may be, without having to do in-person check-ins.
  • Aligners are transparent and removable: compared with fixed options like braces, teeth aligners do offer some added flexibility in that they can be taken out and they are also transparent which means they are barely visible.

Cons of Using Candid Aligners

  • More expensive than other competitors: while Candid is less expensive than some competitors their products are also more expensive than others.
  • Limited number of Candid Studios: a big drawback is that there are currently only a limited number of Candid Studios with many of them around New York, California and Washington D.C. areas. That means that if you don’t live in these select areas then there’s no walk-in option. 
  • Complicated home impression kit process: for some people, taking their own teeth impressions at home may be a daunting process even with the assistance of guides. The starter kit does have clear instructions, but it can still be a somewhat complex process to manage alone. 
  • Doesn’t work for serious orthodontic issues or bite correction: their products are designed to treat mild to moderate teeth alignment issues, but are not suitable for anything more complicated. This may exclude many potential customers from being able to use their products.
  • Can only be used from age 16 upwards: as with most teeth straightening products, they can only be used once all your baby teeth have fallen out and Candid only allows treatment for people over the age of 16 years.
  • Not suitable for use if you have gum disease or upcoming dentistry work scheduled: the website is clear about the fact that certain conditions like gum disease make using their products unsuitable. Likewise if you have any dentistry work scheduled during the treatment plan phase, then it’s best to delay your purchase until that’s been done as you won’t get approval for treatment otherwise.
  • It’s only available if you live in the USA: Many people around the world would like to access innovative teledentistry and teeth straightening treatment, but at the moment Candid’s products and services are only available for those residing in the USA.

The Candid Treatment Plan

Step 1: Get your 3D scan or teeth impressions

The first step to starting your Candid treatment plan is to either get your 3D scan done in-person at a Candid Studio (for free) or to buy a home starter kit and make your own teeth impressions that you send to Candid. These will be used to assess whether you’re eligible for Candid aligners. 

The Candid starter kit is what you will use to make impressions of your teeth and you will receive guidance on how to do this by yourself at home. If you’re not so comfortable with this approach, then you can opt for the Studio option. 

Step 2: Assess whether you’re a Candid candidate

The Candid website has a short self-assessment survey that aims to give you a quick indication of whether you’d make a good candidate for their straighteners. Once you’ve either visited a Candid Studio or have sent in your teeth impressions to Candid, their orthodontists will assess whether your teeth issues are mild enough to be a good candidate for their aligners to be effective. If you are, then they will design a treatment plan for you which includes customised aligners. 

At this stage you will have the opportunity to work with the orthodontist in adjusting your treatment plan if it’s feasible. Once you approve your treatment plan, your personalized aligners will be made and then delivered to you.

Step 2: Receive and wear your aligners

Once you’ve been approved for the Candid treatment plan, you can purchase the Clear Aligner Treatment which includes all the aligners you will need, as well as their premium whitening product. You will also need to install the CandidApp on your smartphone and take your first scan after being guided through the process using a tutorial.

Although some other aligner companies offer the option to only wear teeth aligners at night, Candid’s Chief Dental Officer and co-founder, Dr. C. Lynn Hurst, says there’s no evidence that night-only aligners work. Therefore Candid aligners are recommended to be worn all day and night for at least 22 hours. 

Step 4: Have Regular Consultations With Your Candid Orthodontist

Candid’s remote monitoring means you can check in with your orthodontist at any time by sending them regular update photos that you can take with your phone to show them your progress. Your orthodontist will let you know when it’s time to move to your next set of aligners, based on your treatment plan and your progress.

Step 6: Wear Your Retainers to Maintain Your New Look

For the first 6 weeks after your straightening treatment is completed, you will need to wear your retainers for 22 hours a day for the first 2 weeks, then 18 hours a day for the next two weeks and then 12 to 14 hours a day for the last 2 weeks. 

Thereafter, retainers will need to be worn indefinitely for 8 hours at night to keep your teeth in their new position. That is because teeth are always shifting and if you don’t wear your retainers they may start to shift back to their original position.

Candid recommends that retainers should be changed every 6 months, so that is a long-term cost that is worth considering as they are $99 per set.

Candid Studios

Customers can opt to schedule a free visit to one of the 22 Candid Studios to have a personal consultation with an orthodontist. This will include a technician creating a 3D model of your teeth and after that impression has been made, a personalized treatment plan will be created for you.

Visits usually take about 30 minutes, but can sometimes take a little longer.

The alternative to visiting a Studio, is to purchase a starter kit for $95 to make your own teeth impressions at home that you’ll send off to Candid so they can create the 3D model for you.

Candid Studio Locations

Candid has 22 different Studio locations to choose from, where you can have a face-to-face consultation with one of their orthodontists. These locations are in the following cities:

  • Atlanta, Georgia
  • Austin, Texas
  • Boston, Massachusetts
  • Chicago, Illinois
  • Chicago (West Town), Illinois
  • D.C. Metro (Fairfax), Virginia
  • D.C. Metro (Rockville), Maryland
  • D.C. Metro (Washington D.C.), District of Columbia
  • Los Angeles (Pasadena), California
  • Los Angeles (Santa Monica), California
  • Los Angeles (West Hollywood), California
  • New York (Brooklyn), New York
  • New York (NoHo Headquarters), New York
  • New York (NoMad), New York
  • New York (Upper East Side), New York
  • Orange County (Huntington Beach), California
  • Orange County (Irvine), California
  • Orange County (Long Beach), California
  • San Francisco Bay Area (Front Street), California
  • San Francisco Bay Area (Livermore), California
  • San Francisco Bay Area (San Jose), California
  • San Francisco Bay Area (Union Street), California

COVID-19 Health and Safety at Candid Studios

Candid is following health and safety protocols at all its Candid Studio offices to ensure the health and safety of its customers and staff during COVID-19. According to Candid’s website, these protocols are in line with guidelines from the CDC, ADA and OSHA and include the following:

  • Candid staff and visiting patients must wear face masks;
  • Upon arrival, screenings are conducted for all staff and patients;
  • Sanitizing protocols are followed to disinfect surfaces and spaces;
  • The offices have been re-designed to allow for proper social distancing;
  • The Scan Room is limited to just one patient and one staff member at a time;
  • Staff wear masks, gloves and face shields and have sufficient sanitizer and washing stations.

Candid Pricing

Candid’s pricing is quite competitive when compared with other clear aligner treatments, and particularly so when compared with traditional braces.

It offers free in-office 3D scans at a Candid Studio, which not all other companies offer. Its starter kit (that is used to create impressions at home) costs $95, and its clear alignment treatment plan is $2400. It also offers a monthly payment plan of $99 per month following a $399 downpayment. 

Furthermore, it offers products and services aimed specifically at teens – the teen aligner treatment costs $2800 and includes regular check-ins using the CandidScan for photos and CandidApp every 10 days, aligners, whitening foam, chewies, and two free retainers.

Candid does from time to time also offer some discounts on its website, although there are no standard discounts for students, the elderly or other groups of people.

By comparison, Byte’s impression kit is $95 and its aligner treatment plan is $2400, while SmileDirectClub’s impression kit is $59 and its aligner plan is $1950. 

Does my insurance cover Candid?

The company recently announced that its teeth alignment treatment is now an in-network benefit for some people, depending on their health insurance company.

In-network customers may be eligible for big savings on Candid treatment, depending on your orthodontic benefit. Even if your insurance carrier is not on the in-network list, you can still file a claim after purchasing your treatment plan to see whether you’re eligible for any reimbursement.

Candid has indicated that they will be rapidly adding more partners to their insurance network.

Candid Co Refund Policy

If you are found by an orthodontist to be ineligible as a candidate for Candid aligners, then you will receive a full refund for your payment of the starter kit – and even if you paid for the aligner treatment upfront, you will be reimbursed in full for that. 

For customers who visit a Candid Studio and have their 3D scans done there, they will receive a treatment plan soon after the visit. You will have the option of working with the Candid team to make changes to the plan if it’s feasible and if your orthodontist approves it. If after that you are still not happy with the treatment plan, you will be refunded by the orthodontist. But once you approve your treatment plan, your aligners will be made and at that point you cannot get a refund.

Candid Alternatives & Competitors

There are several other companies that offer invisible aligner treatment. Below is a comparison with some of these companies to help provide a comprehensive review.

Candid vs Invisalign

One of the main differences between Candid and Invisalign is cost – Invisalign can cost in the region of between $3,000 to $5,000 (but this may be more depending on particular circumstances), while Candid‘s aligners cost less at $2,400 (and $2800 for teens). Invisalign usually requires you to check-in and get your next set of aligners every few weeks at one of their offices, whereas Candid is set up for remote monitoring by orthodontists for the duration of the treatment. 

Furthermore, Candid only employs orthodontists, whereas Invisalign treatments are overseen by both orthodontists and general dentists. Orthodontists are more specialized in teeth movement and alignment issues than dentists, so this is an important factor to bear in mind.

Invisalign is able to treat more complicated cases than Candid – this is due to the fact that its aligners have buttons and attachments that enable a wider range of movements. Treatment times using Invisalign can be in the region of 12 to 18 months, whereas with Candid they typically take around 6 months.

Candid vs Byte

There’s no significant price difference between Candid and Byte: you’ll pay around $1895 for Byte All-Day aligners and $95 for their impression kit; at Candid you’ll pay $2400 for their aligners and $95 for their impression kit. In terms of free extras, Byte includes their HyperByte device in each kit and both companies provide the first pair of retainers for free. Byte offers some discounts for military and students, which Candid does not.

However, there are some other crucial differences that are worth mentioning. Firstly, Byte offers all-night aligners which you only need to wear for 10 hours each night, whereas Candid does not offer that as an option. Secondly, Byte and Candid both offer home kits for you to make your own teeth impressions, but only Candid offers in-person alternatives to this in the form of its Candid Studios.

Furthermore, whereas Candid’s doctor network only includes orthodontists – Byte offers access to both dentists and orthodontists. As mentioned above, there are quite big differences between the specialised skills of a dentist versus an orthodontist. 

In terms of time frames, Byte is able to offer the fastest treatment plans, as its HyperByte technology is able to speed up the alignment process.

Both Byte and Candid offer refunds for the impression kits if you aren’t eligible for their treatment.

Candid vs SmileDirectClub

In terms of price comparison, SmileDirectClub’s clear aligner treatment is slightly less expensive than Candid’s at $1950 and it also has more physical studio locations. Both companies offer free 3D scans at either a SmileShop or Candid Studio respectively- or the option to do home-based impressions. Candid’s starter kit for home teeth impressions is $95, whereas the SmileDirectClub one is a bit cheaper at $59. 

In terms of flexibility with wearing your aligners, SmileDirectClub has a nighttime-only option or an everyday-wear plan, whereas Candid doesn’t offer the all-night option. In fact, Candid’s Chief Dental Officer, Dr. C. Lynn Hurst, is quite outspoken about the fact that there’s no evidence that night-only aligners work which is why the company doesn’t provide that as an option. Therefore Candid aligners are recommended to be worn all day and night for at least 22 hours each day. 

Both companies have similar treatment plan timeframes at around 6 months, although if you opt for SmileDirectClub’s nighttime aligners then it could take up to 10 months to complete your treatment.

Candid vs ClearCorrect

The first big difference between these two companies is the range of teeth alignment conditions that they can treat, with ClearCorrect being able to treat a much wider range of more serious alignment issues. Candid’s straightening aligners are only indicated for people with mild to moderate alignment issues, but ClearCorrect can treat these and more which makes them more similar to braces in terms of their functionality.

In terms of a price comparison, Candid is usually less expensive at $2400 whereas ClearCorrect’s price ranges depending on your particular teeth conditions but is usually in the range of between $2,500 and $5,000.

Comparing flexibility and convenience, Candid Co is set up for fully remote treatment and ClearCorrect, which previously did not offer tele-dentistry, has now embraced this new trend and recently launched its own remote clear aligner treatment solution called ClearCorrect NOW. ClearCorrect NOW also has a remote monitoring solution called DenToGo Monitoring Light. 

Lastly, in terms of treatment time frames, Candid is usually able to offer quicker results with an average of 6 months of treatment; ClearCorrect’s treatment is usually around 12 to 18 months although some of their plans (for more minor alignment issues) can take just a few months to complete treatment – making the two companies very comparable in terms of time frames.

A major difference is that ClearCorrect sometimes adds on additional orthodontic appliances like expanders and elastics and their aligners can have attachments called engagers which button on to your teeth to help with more complicated movements.

Candid FAQs

Is Candid Legitimate?

With an A+ rating from the Better Business Bureau, you can be assured that it is a legitimate business that is operating in compliance with fair business practices. 

What are the Candid Aligners Made From?

You may be wondering what the plastic aligner trays that you’ll be putting in your mouth each day are actually made from. According to a blog on Candid’s website, the FDA has been concerned about this too – specifically about compounds like Bisphenol A and phthalate plasticizers, because of their potential health implications. Many aligner companies avoid these compounds in their aligners. 

Am I Too Old to Get Orthodontic Treatment?

The short answer is no. It’s becoming more commonplace for adults of all ages to seek orthodontic treatment. Even if you had braces to straighten your teeth many years ago or if your teeth were always perfectly straight, with age they can shift out of alignment. Age is just one of the factors that will be worked into your treatment plan. 

Can Teens Get Candid?

Yes. Candid has a special teens offering which is slightly different from adults in both cost and the fact that teens will need to first go to a Candid Studio to have an X-ray of their mouth taken to ensure safe treatment. This is because teens’ mouths are still developing and an X-ray will show what’s happening in more detail. Panoramic X-rays can show whether there are unerupted wisdom teeth and lets the orthodontist know as much as possible about the mouth to create an appropriate and safe treatment plan.

In terms of cost, the teen treatment plan is slightly more than the adult one at $2800 and it includes check-ins every 10 days in the form of remote monitoring through the CandidApp to ensure everything is progressing according to the plan. Teens get their aligners, whitening foam, chewies, CandidScan and CandidApp included – and they also get two free retainers and one free adjustment if it’s needed. After that, retainers cost $99. 

Must aligners be removed for eating and drinking?

You can eat and drink like normal while wearing your aligners, but you should avoid having any very hot drinks as they could damage the aligners. It’s also recommended that you brush and floss your teeth and rinse your aligners with water after any meal.

How should aligners be cleaned?

You can clean your aligners by rinsing them with cold water and you can also apply some toothpaste gently for additional cleaning. Be careful of damaging aligners with hot water or abrasive instruments.

Is it Painful to Wear an Aligner?

You should expect to feel some discomfort when you first start wearing your aligners as you’ll have to get used to having something new in your mouth for 22 hours each day.

People also usually feel some soreness in the first few days of each new set of aligners while they adjust to the new shape. Aligners work by applying a bit of pressure to the teeth to encourage gradual movement and this stretches the periodontal ligaments surrounding each tooth on the one side and then compresses the other side. That in turn results in a degree of inflammation as the body’s healing response, but this should only go on for a couple of days and then the bone-remodelling phase begins which is less sore.

The chewies that are included in your kit can be used when you feel any pain – they can be placed in the area where you feel discomfort and then you bite down repeatedly for a little while to help reduce inflammation.

What is Candid’s social impact?

These days many companies see value in investing in social upliftment and development programs and Candid has done this by partnering with Smile Train. Smile Train is an international charity for children with cleft lips and palates that provides them with free treatment. 

The charity has an impressive track record – it’s helped over a million children by providing training, funding and resources to doctors who are then able to comprehensively assist children with cleft lips and palates. 

Through their partnership with Smile Train, Candid will support cleft treatment for 1,000 children globally and will help raise awareness to enhance support for the charity and for orthodontic care for its beneficiaries.

Dr Fabin Mary George - Editor

With more than 10 years as a dental surgeon, Dr Fabin Mary George is passionate about educating consumers around the world to help look after their teeth.

She completed her Bachelor of Surgery at the Century Institute of Dental Science and Research Centre in 2010.

Alongside editing the International Journal of Dental Clinics she has also written for major publications including Thrive Global.