My motivation to start was to 1) be able to floss...
16 Jul 2014
6 months post
My motivation to start was to 1) be able to floss better and 2) have a nice smile.
The first few days of the first few trays hurt really bad and I actually regretted starting. But from tray four on the pain was not bad at all except it also hurt really bad when I started elastics (tray 10). Otherwise I don't experience much pain after a new liner has been in for about 30 minutes or so. When I did have pain I treated with Tylenol and Anbesol.
Just started liner 16 of 23
27 Aug 2014
7 months post
Went to my ortho today and he said my teeth had responded to the elastics so well that I could stop wearing them. I wore them for trays 10-15 so for 12 weeks total. I am glad to be done with them because I hated how they made my upper liners dig into my lip.
I am really please with my progress. I compared my most recent picture with the computer model to see how close I am to the treatment goal and it matched pretty much spot on. I am hoping this means I won't have a long refinement.
Starting liner 17
11 Sep 2014
8 months post
Not wearing elastics these last two weeks has been great. I am so glad Dr. Russell told me to stop them at my last appointment.
I have noticed a few changes in how my liners feel these days. Early on it was really painful for a few days and then I wouldn't notice them at all. Some trays in the middle didn't bother me at all - so much so that I was afraid they were not working. The last few trays haven't been what I would call painful - definitely felt some pressure when they first went in but nothing truly painful compared to the first trays - but then they rather feel like I have something caught in my back teeth. While I am glad to not have any true pain - it is a little obnoxious to constantly feel like I need a tooth pick and I can't do anything about it. I think the difference may be that early on a lot of the trays were moving teeth where I was really crowded on the bottom and now they are moving my molars.
Thankfully my bite is finally closing again. I had a really terrible open bite for most of my treatment - I feel like I can actually grind my food properly and I am not swallowing huge pieces of food. That was probably my biggest complaint with going through treatment. They warn you that an open bite will happen but until it actually does happen you don't realize how annoying it will be.
I have 6 trays left and I am really excited to see how everything looks when I am done. I really feel like my liners have always tracked really well and at my last appointment two weeks ago my teeth were pretty much spot on with the computer model, so I think I will be pretty on target when these trays are over. While I hope that means I won't have a lot of refinement to do - I am a little annoyed that my price was set with the expectation my treatment probably taking 18months and it looks like I could be done within a year instead. My ortho does not charge more when cases take longer than expected but they also don't give refunds if your treatment goes more quickly than expected.
Over all though I am so glad I started invisalign.
Starting tray 19 out of 23
Not much to report - tray 18 was a piece of cake, and tray 19 so far has also been a breeze. I feel the tiniest bit of pressure on the last tooth on the bottom that is still behind the others but No pain to speak of, and thankfully the feeling of having something stuck in my molars is gone too.
I can't believe in about 2 months time I will be done with this set of trays! As great as my progress has been I can't wait to see the finished product. (And chew gum again)
Just put in tray 21 out of 23
4 Nov 2014
10 months post
I can't believe I am finally on my last three trays!! I go back December 15 to make molds for refinement though I still think there might be a chance I won't need them. We'll see. I am really looking forward to only brushing one set of teeth again.
My jaw started to feel weird near my ears with the last tray. Not painful - but like things aren't sitting right. My ortho said we will keep an eye on it - hopefully it won't turn into TMJ problems that would be awful. In the mean time I am avoid really tough to chew food.
Just did impressions for my refinement trays
15 Dec 2014
11 months post
I have two days left on tray 23 out of 23 but I had my ortho appointment today and they took new pictures, so now I can post some new comparison shots.
I was really thinking I would be done after these trays but now with their pictures showing angles I couldn't see myself (I have more pics than I am posting here) I can see where there are small changes to make. While I am disappointed I need new trays I am happy that I am not self conscious to take pictures anymore and flossing is much easier now too. So really Any further perfecting is just icing on the cake!
But I guess after paying $4800 out of pocket I do expect them to be perfect at the end so if it takes more trays it takes more trays.
I am mostly disappointed that I have to wear the exact same tray that I have been wearing fire two weeks until the first week of February - I thought they would give me a fresh liner of the same number to wear for two weeks at a time. I am afraid this tray is going to get super gross between now and February.
I am also disappointed I have to wait that long because I think my teeth are going to get used to not moving anymore and when the new trays come in they are going to hurt badly again. I guess we will just have to see.
Either way I am still really happy I did this.
Overall my appointment today went well - At first I was sad to see that I have 16 trays but then I was happy to learn I will only wear them 1 week a piece rather than two as I did for my first 23 trays. This puts me finishing these trays at the end of May, one month ahead of the time quoted at my initial evaluation.
I had to get an additional attachment but its on a back tooth so it's not seen.
Finally, I have to go back in elastics but only at night and with a lighter elastic.
This first tray is not too uncomfortable so far but I'm anticipating some pain with the elastics. We will just see how it goes.
I have to say I was worried about wearing the same tray for 8 weeks but it held up pretty well. It only got the tiniest bit yellow - I only noticed it in certain lights when I was brushing it - It did not make my teeth look yellow. I was worried it would smell but that didn't happen either. Something I did not anticipate was that It did crack a bit in the bite ramp but it held up fine. A canine tooth almost wore through the tray but it also held up enough for me to make it through the 8 weeks.
I see a light at the end of the tunnel!
Finished with refinement - two weeks until my attachments come off
Today is my last day of my last refinement aligners. I am counting down the days until my next appointment (June 10th) when my attachments will come off and I'll start the process for my retainers, and will only have one set of teeth to brush!
Overall the refinement process was not that bad. I only had a few days of discomfort and they were nothing like the pain from when I first started.
I don't know if they changed the way they make aligners since I started treatment or if there is a difference between aligners made to wear for two weeks vs one but I noticed a difference in the aligners themselves - almost like they are more translucent and better constructed. I didn't have any rough edges to sand down and i noticed the bite ramps were different too like the ramp itself was a little larger. Overall the differences I noticed were all improvements.
Attachments are off!
I got my attachments taken off yesterday. It was quite unpleasant. The sanding off caused a bad smell and a stream of air that made it hard to breathe through my nose. The tool also caught my gums on a few teeth and it hurt a bit and bled a bit. It's nothing that would keep me from doing this over if I had the choice but I am Glad it's over!
They took impressions of my teeth for my retainers and I go back in two weeks to get them. Then I will also get my final pictures and I can post official before and after shots side by side.