Invisalign is a revolutionary orthodontic option that has changed the landscape of dentistry since its invention nearly 20 years ago. How did Invisalign start, and who invented it? Here’s everything you need to know about Invisalign’s historical timeline, from its invention to its incredible growth:
Zia Chishti – The Inventor Of Invisalign
The man who created Invisalign wasn’t a dentist at all! Zia Chishti majored in Computer Science and Economics at Columbia University, graduating in 1992. Shortly thereafter, he went to Stanford to get his MBA.
This is where Chishti came up with the concept of Invisalign. He was undergoing orthodontic treatment while at Stanford, and he envisioned an alternative treatment that used clear aligners instead of braces.
The Beginnings Of Invisalign
Chishti worked on his concept of Invisalign in his dorm room, with some help from his friends at Stanford. He graduated from Stanford in 1997 and founded Align Technologies, LTD with three other students.
Invisalign was approved by the FDA in 1998, and hit the market shortly thereafter. By the year 2000, the company had attracted more than $140 million in investments from venture capitalists. It went public on the NASDAQ in 2001, and was valued at $1 billion.
Chishti left the company in 2003, but Invisalign continued to grow, thanks to an aggressive marketing campaign. It had 80,000 patients in 2002, which grew to more than 175,000 users by the end of 2004. While other clear aligner products were introduced during this time, none of them matched the widespread popularity of Invisalign.
Invisalign Gains Popularity And Enters Widespread Use
Over time, Invisalign has steadily grown in popularity and entered widespread use by dentists. The Invisalign product has continued to be refined, too, and Invisalign has invested heavily in training dentists.
In 2007, the Academy of General Dentistry approved a PACE (Program Approval For Continuing Education) program application from Invisalign, which resulted in the founding of the AlignTech Institute.
That brings us to today. Invisalign is still one of the most popular systems of clear plastic aligners on the market, despite the rise of some new, low-cost competitors like Smile Direct Club and ClearCorrect. For patients looking to get a new smile without braces, Invisalign still remains the top choice.
Is Invisalign Right For You? Find Out At Carmel Mountain Ranch Dental Care!
Want to find out if Invisalign is a good option for straightening your teeth? Come and see Dr. Carpenter today, and get a comprehensive orthodontic consultation. We’d be happy to assess your smile and determine if you’re a good candidate for Invisalign treatment. Contact us now at (858) 487-6453, or stop by our office at 12075 Carmel Mountain Rd, Suite 210, San Diego, CA 92128.