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Nikki Newsome’s Tips on uSmile™ Clear Aligner Therapy

Nikki Newsome
Treatment Coordinator at Dailey Orthodontics

Thank you to Nikki Newsome, Treatment Coordinator at Dailey Orthodontics for sharing her experience speaking to patients about uSmile™ clear aligner therapy!

Tip #1 Charge for treatment planning
Our practice offers complimentary records-pictures, X-rays and digital scans- but we have started charging an $85 work up fee for clear aligners to help with the initial time investment from the office. If the patient chooses to pursue aligner treatment, we deduct the $85 from the treatment fee. In the recent past, we had patients who expressed an interest in clear aligners. We would treatment plan their case. After presenting the resulting treatment and the estimated fees to the patient, they would decline. With this new approach using uSmile clear aligner therapy, we emphasize the value in the upfront planning of their case. Then, we screen out anyone who is not serious.

Patients have been very accepting about paying a modest sum for the doctor’s time; these tend to be the patients who will proceed with treatment. This approach has worked well for our practice, increasing productivity and allowing us to be more efficient.

Tip #2 Ortho expertise over brand
Aligner patients have not been brand-conscious in our practice. Rather, they are simply looking for a great result and value the doctor’s expertise. Although they may come in asking for a specific aligner brand, the “Pepsi vs. Coke” explanation resonates with them and dismisses the specific brand request. I do emphasize that one of the advantages with the technology we use is that the doctor can micromanage each specific tooth movement, carefully crafting the final result, which is not possible with other systems.

We provide all our aligners in boxes customized with the Dailey Orthodontics logo. I keep an extra custom box in the TC room to show the patient how it is labeled. Patients like to know what to expect, and it helps to have something to see and touch during their initial consult.

Tip #3 Combination Treatment
Some patients are very adamant that they want aligners, even if their treatment would last more than two years. In this situation, we will tell them how long it will likely take with aligners-only versus using fixed appliances to do the heavy lifting and then transitioning into aligners as soon as possible. Most patients readily accept a few months of braces if it means their total treatment time will be 15-18 months instead of 2+ years. Since they are motivated to move to aligners, they have great compliance. We charge based on the time in treatment, so we do not charge more for combination treatment.

Tip #4 Per aligner fee for relapse treatment
Many patients stop wearing their retainers and experience some relapse. If I have a patient present with minor relapse, only needing 2 or 3 stages, we charge them per aligner and get them straightened up for a small fee.

I love uSmile clear aligner therapy. It has been working really well for all our patients, including finishing, combo and comprehensive cases! It is nice to have all these options in one platform.

Nikki Newsome
Treatment Coordinator at Dailey Orthodontics
Offices located in Hampton,
Newport News and Poquoson, Virginia

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