I started invisalign on Thursday. The aligners came in and I was so excited…until I learned I was getting “buttons” put on. They are little glue dots in the same color as your teeth put on to assist in moving your teeth. They put some on my eye teeth and they are pointy and stick out. When I smile I feel like a vampire. My sweet husband says it’s not noticeable. However, I see my (brutally) honest older sister this week and that will be the true test of how ridiculous I look. Here’s what my upper trays look like:
You can see how crowded my teeth are and my two front teeth are starting to overlap. If you look closely on the 3rd tooth to the right you can see the space for the “button”.
What is invisalign?
You can learn all about it on their website here. The basics are that you use these plastic aligner trays that you switch out every 2 weeks to move your teeth. This is hardly noticeable (unless you have vampire like teeth) and it is a great alternative for adults who do not want to wear braces.
My experience so far:
I’ve wanted to do invisalign for the past 4 years but my husband and I have moved 4 times in the past 4 years. So I would do a consultation and start saving up and then we would move. I’ve had 4 quotes: in Maryland it was $6000 about 3 yrs ago, Pennsylvania it was $4500 about 1.5 yrs ago, then here in Kansas City I saw 2 dentists and the quotes were $5500 & $3950. In both MD & PA the invisalign providers did not have any in house financing. Here in Kansas City, the provider that charged $3950 had an in house payment plan with no interest over 18 months, even though my treatment was 12 months. Also, they are an elite premier provider and one of the top invisalign providers in the world. So, SOLD. (BTW, a wife of a dentist recently told me that the trays usually cost just $500 to the dentists. After the dentists pay for the training there is a lot of profit in this it seems).
I went to their office to make impressions about 2 months ago. They examine you and find out your goals and then send them off to California. Invisalign creates all the aligners for the entire treatment and sends them to your dentist.
Mine arrived this week and I went in Thursday afternoon to have them fitted. They did put those glue buttons on my teeth. I have 6 up top and 6 on the bottom. They showed me the animation of how my teeth will move over the next 12 months which was so cool. I go in every 3 months for them to take a look and give me my next 3 months of trays.
What I don’t like:
Obviously, the vampire like eye teeth. Again, my sister will be the true test.
The first day I had them in really hurt. I got home after work and spent all evening in bed with very sore teeth. Somehow I didn’t realize that moving all my teeth in my mouth would be painful. Duh! I’ve taken about 12 advil a day to help. The pain has slowly subsided and today on my fourth day it’s mostly gone! I’m hoping no advil today.
Lastly, is the pain in the butt process of eating. And snacking? Those days are over. This definitely is going to help with losing weight. My stomach is flatter already after 3 days with invisalign. So, you cannot eat, chew gum or drink (other than cool water) with the aligners in your mouth. They are afraid the heat will melt the aligners and any drink other than water will stain them. Also, you should keep them in 22 hours a day.
The process to eat is as follows:
take out your aligners — and with 12 little buttons that stick out on your teeth it’s not that simple to do. You need to really tug at them & there is a clicking noise.
then you eat — again that feels weird with 12 little bumps in your mouth
then you clean your aligners — I use my sonicare toothbrush and toothpaste.
then you floss and brush your teeth
then you put the aligners back in — I have to apply a lot of pressure to put mine in.
We went out to dinner Friday night and it was such a pain. And just think, I am going on a cruise next week. Usually, an hour doesn’t pass when I cruise with my family before we are in line again for something to eat.
I am excited for the end result and I will keep you updated on how it goes. I can’t believe I have 362 more days of this.