SmileDirectClub to compete with Invisalign by selling aligners to dentists, orthodontists

SmileDirectClub, which went public in September , had previously sold its braces alternative only directly to patients online and through outlets like CVS stores .

SmileDirectClub says its treatment, which is typically thousands of dollars cheaper than braces, is safe and allows more people to afford teeth straightening.

Invisalign had largely cornered the market of selling removable aligners to patients through dentists and orthodontists, who then administer and monitor the treatment plan.

Clear aligners are an increasingly popular alternative to metal-wire braces because they can be temporarily removed for eating and drinking.

The companies have sparred before over their arrangement, with Align being forced to shut down a dozen newly opened stores last year after losing an arbitration case.

SmileDirectClub will also continue to sell its products directly to customers through what it calls teledentistry, in which patients send a series of photos of their teeth to remote doctors who monitor progress and can adjust the treatment plan accordingly.

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