The Inman Aligner for teeth straightening

Reviewed by: Dr Anoop Maini (London)

What is the Inman Aligner?

Inman Aligners are a type of orthodontic appliance that can straighten or move your teeth to the desired position. Many dentists use the Inman Aligner as an alternative to the Invisalign invisible braces system. The Aligners are restricted to the level of movement that they can achieve and generally work better on misalignments of the upper and lower front teeth. They are not suitable for cases where the teeth are heavily crowded for example. After a consultation, your dentist will be able to determine if you are suitable for teeth straightening treatment with the Inman Aligner.

Unlike the Invisalign system, the Inman Aligner is not entirely clear and has a visible metal bar that shows across the front of the teeth. However, the Inman Aligner does have many of the same benefits as the invisible braces system.

before inman aligner treatment
after inman aligner treatment
This case took just 3 months to complete with the Inman Aligner. Photos kindly donated by Dr Tif Qureshi.
inman aligner diagram

How does the Aligner work?

Similar to the Invisalign system, the Inman Aligner is a removable appliance used to move the teeth over time. It relies on forces created by a coiled spring on the lingual side of the aligner (that on the inside or back of the teeth), and a bar that sits across the front of the teeth to “squeeze” the teeth into position by “pushing” and “pulling” them into position.

The diagram (right) illustrates the forces involved in the movement.

after inman aligner treatment in london
before and after inman aligner treatment in london
Inman Aligner photos kindly donated by Dr. Anoop Maini

How long does treatment with the aligner take?

Treatment times are generally shorter than with most invisible braces systems, with treatment times varying from six to 16 weeks. The speed of the results is highly dependent on how long you wear the appliance for each day. With the Inman Aligner you can take the appliance off; however, the longer you wear it, the quicker you'll see results. It is recommended that you wear the aligner for around 20 hours a day, every day, if possible.

Is it uncomfortable?

Just like any new appliance in your mouth, it may feel uncomfortable at first and will take some getting used to. Many patients say that it initially affects their speech and causes them to salivate more, but after about a week or so you should become accustomed to wearing the Aligner.

inman aligner invisible inman aligner standard

What are the advantages of the Inman Aligner system?

  • Shorter treatment times than invisible braces.
  • Removable, so that you can eat and clean your teeth easily during treatment.
  • Cheaper than invisible braces.
  • Only one Aligner is needed for the entire treatment.
before inman aligner treatment on lower teeth
after inman aligner treatment lower straight teeth
This case took just 8 weeks to complete with the Inman Aligner. Photos kindly donated by Dr Tif Qureshi.

What are the disadvantages of the Inman Aligner?

  • It is not as discreet as the Invisalign system.
  • The level of movement that can be achieved with this system is limited.
  • There are currently not as many clinics offering this treatment as Invisalign, so it is harder to find a local practitioner.

How much does the Inman Aligner cost?

The cost of treatment with the Inman Aligner is significantly less than with comparable treatment with invisible braces; however, the exact costs will depend on many factors, such as:

  • How complicated the treatment is and the amount of movement required.
  • The level of expertise of the dentist.
  • The practice where the treatment is carried out.
  • The length of treatment.

You can expect to pay between £1250 and £2500 for this treatment.