For decades, there has only ever been one commercially available option for clear aligner patients to seat their trays and perform the chewing exercises necessary to stay comfortable and keep treatment predictable: Invisalign chewies.
So many of my colleagues grew tired of giving them to their patients, and began to craft their own Invisalign chewies alternative using MacGyver tactics like the ends of disposable toothbrushes, surgical suction tips, and other repurposed dental supplies.
The Quest For A Better Alternative
This was unacceptable to me and never understood or appreciated by my patients. I felt that I had to do something to end the madness. With clear aligner treatment an already enormous and rapidly growing market, there was an opportunity to innovate, to create an alternative to chewies for Invisalign that would make the smile journey more comfortable for millions of people around the world. And so it began, the Movemints story.
In a lab, hidden somewhere in the hills of East Pittsburgh, I took to the grinding wheel determined to reshape the Invisalign chewie. I successfully created some pretty cool shapes, but I was still gagging on unappealing foam rubber. So I thought to myself, why not create something edible that my patients could enjoy while seating their trays? I sculpted anything I could find, from my kids' play dough, jolly ranchers, anything I could find in the checkout section of my local grocery store.
An Edible, Hands-Free Solution
One of the least appealing aspects of Invisalign chewies is holding on to the other end of it while you’re using it. This cannot be concealed, which is a primary objective of many clear aligner wearers. It's also unsanitary, and a real threat to patient health especially during cold and flu season.
In order for the innovation to be hands-free, it had to fit in between your teeth and also be edible so the patient could consume it after use. And in order for it to help seat trays, it had to be firm enough to support the gentle chewing exercises that justified the need for chewies in the first place. So my partner and I started to think about what an ideal shape might look like. Something with grooves that could fit comfortably between the trays, so that the object wouldn't be at risk of flying out of (or back into) the patient's mouth.
We eventually exhausted our abilities and hired a local sculptor who took our crude designs to an incredible new level. He loved the challenge of crafting an object that could conform to the plastic Invisalign trays, and we loved what he was able to deliver.
With the shape developed, it was time to solve the second part of the equation: an Invisalign chewies alternative that would also be edible and enjoyable for patients to consume. And that's what ultimately led me to design a mint with special grooves that could fit my patient's clear aligners. It took us a few formulations (you'd never guess how difficult it actually is to create and bring a new mint to market, but we did it!) but with hard work and determination we proudly introduced Movemints clear aligner mints to the world in early 2016.
Introducing Movemints®, the Mint that Fits Clear Aligners!
After several product iterations, a design and utility patent, trademark applications and years of hard work, we've been able to deliver over 1 million Movemints to clear aligner patients all over the world. Patients can buy them on Amazon or our online store. Orthodontists and Invisalign providers can buy sample packs to provide their patients and differentiate their practice, and we've even been featured in the 61st Annual GRAMMY Gift Bag!
It's been an incredible ride, but it's enabled us to deliver on our mission to make clear aligner treatment more comfortable and enjoyable for Invisalign patients everywhere. In a world of high-technology, Movemints are simply the best alternative to Invisalign chewies.
If you're a patient, check out our Smile Journey collection. If you're a provider, check out how you can differentiate your practice with our convenient "daily dose" sample packages, perfect for patient thank you bags.
Have you tried the Mint That Fits®?