Is the Invisalign Express Treatment the Right Option for You?

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If you have heard about Invisalign Express, you are probably wondering whether this sped-up version of the classic Invisalign treatment process is a better option for you.

Much like the classic and full Invisalign treatment plan, Invisalign Express is a custom treatment plan, but one that offers the distinct advantages of a much shorter treatment time and a smaller price tag. 

The precise treatment timeframe is going to vary on an individual basis, but in some cases the Invisalign Express treatment process can be completed in as little as 2.5 months. No-one can argue that that is not spectacular, particularly because you can expect to achieve the same great result as you would get from the full, much longer and much more costly Invisalign treatment. 

Are there any drawbacks to choosing Invisalign Express over any of the other options – which include Invisalign Comprehensive, Invisalign Lite and Invisalign First? 

The answer is, of course! Invisalign Express, although an incredible teeth straightening option for those whose dental misalignment problems are minor, has its limitations. In this article, were are going to take a good hard look at both the pros, the cons, the expected treatment timeframe and cost, and much more.

If this sounds like what you are looking for, then keep on reading. 

The Invisalign Express treatment process

First of all, you may want to know what the Invisalign Express treatment process entails. What are the steps, what is the timeline? 

Well, in this section of the article we lay it all out for you, right here:

Step 1: Itero scan and assessment

As with the full Invisalign treatment, the first step to getting your Invisalign Express clear aligners is to arrange an in-person consultation with an Invisalign doctor near you. You can use the search tool over on the Invisalign website to find your nearest Invisalign expert.

At your initial consultation, your Invisalign dentist or orthodontist is going to carry out a through examination of your teeth. He or she is also going to make a 3D scan using the innovative Itero scanner. 

Step 2: Custom treatment plan approval 

After your appointment, your dentist is going to send the scans and moulds of your teeth to Invisalign HQ, where a team of highly trained dentists rand orthodontists work out a custom treatment plan for you. 

Both you and your dentist get to see and approve of the plan as well as the forecast results before the treatment commences. 

In most cases, the Invisalign team get it exactly right from the start, but if you have any specific wishes or changes to make, they will go back to the drawing board and incorporate your wishes into your treatment plan and forecast until you are happy with the expected results. 

A payment plan is also worked out at this stage of the process, before your treatment begins.

Step 3: Aligners and adjustments

Once you are fully satisfied with your proposed treatment plan, your custom aligners will be made and sent to your dentist. Your dentist will instal and change them out as required throughout your treatment, and will also be monitoring your results along the way to make sure your treatment is yielding the expected results within the expected timeframe.

Depending on what adjustments your teeth need, you will receive either five, seven or ten sets of aligner trays. Each set of aligners has to be worn for approximately fourteen days before it is time to switch to the next pair of aligner trays.

Step 4: Maintenance 

At the end of your treatment time, you should have the perfectly straight smile you desire. 

In order to keep and maintain it for good, however, it is a good idea to occasionally wear an Invisalign retainer. The retainer’s function is not to straighten or shift your teeth further, but rather to maintain them in their new positions by preventing them from slipping back to their original ones.

Invisalign Express timeframes

One of the most wonderful things about the Invisalign Express process is that it takes significantly less time than other orthodontic treatments on the market.

To be specific, Invisalign offers three different Express options – Invisalign Express 5, Invisalign Express 10 and Invisalign i7. These Express treatments include five, ten and seven pairs of clear aligners respectively. That is very few aligners compared to most other teeth straightening plans. 

It is impossible to give you a 100% accurate timeframe for a teeth straightening plan before it has even begun – but it is possible to give you a very spot-on idea of how long you can expect your treatment to take depending on the number of aligner trays it includes. 

Since Invisalign clear aligners have to be switched roughly every fourteen days, the Express 5 treatment time is going to be roughly 10 weeks (2.5 months), the Express 10 treatment time is going to be roughly 20 weeks (5 months) and the Express i7 treatment time is going to be roughly 14 weeks (just over 4 months).

Invisalign Express cost

The next thing you are no doubt going to want to know is how much the Invisalign Express treatment costs.

Your Invisalign Express treatment cost is going to depend on a couple of different factors, including the specific dental corrections you want to achieve, whether or not your insurance company is willing to cover your Express aligners, and your location. Having said that, you should expect to pay somewhere between £1,500 – £3,000 for your entire treatment. 

If you would like to compare and contrast the cost of Invisalign Express with Invisalign Comprehensive or Invisalign Lite, the costs of these other treatments are in the ballpark of £3,500 – £5,500 for Invisalign Comprehensive and £2,500 – £4,000 for Invisalign Lite.

Invisalign Express and insurance

Many insurance companies cover orthodontic treatments, including Invisalign treatment.

Having said that, Invisalign Express is often used to correct minor as well as purely cosmetic misalignment issues, which your insurance company may not cover. In some cases, your insurance provider may cover some but not the entire cost of your Invisalign Express aligners.

All in all, there is only one way to find out, and that is to contact your insurance provider, who will be able to give you a much more specific answer.

Invisalign Express vs traditional Invisalign treatment 

The comprehensive Invisalign treatment that most people think of when they hear Invisalign mentioned has been around since the 90s, with very few changes having been made to the treatment since then due to its roaring success at correcting a wide range of dental alignment issues in both adults and teens. Invisalign’s comprehensive treatment plan involves 25 or more sets of aligner trays, and can take anywhere between six and eighteen months on average. 

Invisalign Express is an innovative treatment option for those who only need to correct minor teeth misalignment, because not everyone needs more than twenty sets of aligners to correct their bite, gapped or impacted teeth. For those whose misalignment issues are relatively minor, as little as five sets of aligners may be needed.

Invisalign Express pros

Invisalign Express offers numerous distinct and hard-hitting upsides. Let us take a look at the most prominent ones.

Much shorter timeframe

First and foremost, there is the shortened treatment timeframe. No doubt straightening your teeth in as little as 2-3 months is appealing to anyone who might have been hesitant to commit to the year-long treatment time of Invisalign Comprehensive, not to mention the multi-year process of getting teeth straightened with traditional braces. 

Although the Invisalign Express treatment timeframe varies from individual to individual, you can be sure that it will be completed in less than six months. The short timeframe also makes Invisalign Express an appealing option for anyone wanting to straighten their teeth in preparation for a life event, whether a wedding, a job promotion, a big launch or something else.

Smaller price tag

Another pro associated with Invisalign Express is the cost. The much smaller price tag is directly linked to the much shorter timeframe of the treatment and the smaller numbers of both aligners and dentist visits required. 

The cost of Invisalign Express is going to vary from person to person, but you can expected it to cost only slightly over half of what the typical Invisalign Comprehensive teeth straightening treatment costs.


Convenience has got the be brought up as an important pro of opting for Invisalign Express. Because what teeth straightening treatment could be more convenient than one that only takes a couple of months, doesn’t cost much, involves practically invisible aligner trays and yields amazing results?

Invisalign Express cons

Now, it is time for us to take a good look at the downsides, or the cons. Nothing is ever just perfect – not even Invisalign Express.

Only suitable for minor dental misalignment 

It is true that Invisalign Express can yield the same stunning results as the Invisalign Lite or Invisalign Comprehensive – but only if your teeth are rather straight and only require minor corrections in the first place.

Invisalign Express is not suitable for moderate to severe malocclusion, crowding or bite issues. In order to deal with those, you will have to undergo the Comprehensive or at the very least the Light treatment instead.

Insurance may not cover it

While most insurance companies today cover orthodontic treatments, Invisalign Express is only intended for minor corrections, which could be viewed as purely cosmetic by some dental insurance providers.

Of course, this specific con may not be relevant in your case – it all depends on your insurance provider. To find out whether or not the dental insurance provider you are with covers Invisalign Express, you will have to contact them and ask.

Invisalign Express FAQ

How long do you wear Invisalign Express?

Invisalign offer three different Invisalign Express options, depending on the extend of the corrections your teeth require. 

Whereas traditional Invisalign treatment involves 25 or more sets of aligners, Invisalign Express involves only five, seven or ten. Since Invisalign aligners have to be switched out every two weeks, the Invisalign Express may be condensed down to a mere 10 weeks, or 2.5 months. 

By the same token, the longest Invisalign Express treatment can take is 20 weeks, or 5 months. To find out precisely how long your specific Invisalign Express treatment would be, we recommend using the search function on Invisalign’s website to find and make an appointment with an Invisalign doctor near you.

What is the difference between Invisalign Express and Invisalign Lite?

Invisalign Lite is an orthodontic treatment option for mild to moderate malocclusion, overcrowding, gapped teeth and minor bite corrections. The Invisalign Lite treatment usually takes between six and eight months on average. Because of the shorter timeframe and the smaller number of clear aligner trays required, Invisalign Lite is slightly cheaper than the full traditional Invisalign treatment. 

Invisalign Express offers an even shorter timeframe – anywhere from two and a half to five months – and is even less costly than Invisalign Lite. Keep in mind, Invisalign Express is only designed and intended for minor aesthetic tooth corrections. If your dental misalignment issues are more severe, you will have to go with either Invisalign Lite or the full Invisalign treatment plan instead.

How many trays are in Invisalign Express?

The Invisalign Express treatment includes either five, seven or ten pairs of clear custom-made aligner trays, depending on how much teeth straightening is required. 

What’s the shortest amount of time for Invisalign?

The shortest treatment time with Invisalign clear aligners is the Invisalign Express option, which involves as little as five sets of aligners. 

Invisalign aligners have to be switched out every fourteen days, which means that the Invisalign Express treatment process may be completed in as little as 2.5 months. It is important to be aware of the fact that Invisalign Express is only meant for minor adjustments.

Conclusion: Is Invisalign Express the right orthodontic treatment for you?

So, is Invisalign Express the right orthodontic treatment option for you?

If your teeth are relatively straight and only require minor tweaking to be absolutely perfect, the answer is a big resounding yes! What’s not to love about the short treatment timeframe and the smaller price tag? Your only issue may be getting your insurance to cover your treatment – since the corrections you need are only very minor, it may take a bit of convincing for your insurance provider to see that the issue is not just one of cosmetic dentistry. 

If, on the other hand, your teeth are somewhat more out of alignment, or your are dealing with more severe forms of crowding, gaps or bite problems, Invisalign Express is just not going to cut it for you and we recommend looking into Invisalign Light or Invisalign Comprehensive instead.

Dr Febin Mary George - Editor

With more than 10 years as a dental surgeon, Dr Febin 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.