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My Invisalign Journey - 2 years, NOT WORTH IT... Getting "real" braces.

(Week 1) I just started my invisalign treatment. I...

(Week 1) I just started my invisalign treatment. I have an overbite, and my lower teeth are arched. My bite is way off so when I chew my bottom teeth will hit the gums behind my front teeth if I'm not careful. If the clincheck animation is correct, this treatmant plan should correct my problems. I have 24 aligners for the top and bottom. It's a 48 week plan not counting any re-finements I may need at the end of the treatment to adjust any existing overbite.

My first week of invisalign went pretty well. The first two days are the definitely the hardest. There was quite a bit of discomfort trying to remove the aligners. Some of the discomfort I'm sure had to do with my technique of removing them. I have a total of nine attatchments, four on the top, five on the bottom. I have fewer attatchments on my left side, top and bottom. I found that the aligners came off easiest by popping off both sides in the back, and then working the aligner off from the left side (fewer attatchments) to my right. You'll have to find the technique that works best for you. By the end of week one I was popping them in and out with ease. I only remove the aligners to eat meals, no snacking. With the brushing and flossing involved after eating, I think you'll find it's too much of a hassle to remove your aligners to snack.

If I want some junk food I'll eat it at meal time. I do drink water throughout the day. My mouth gets a little dry from time to time from wearing these. I've been wearing my aligners for 23 hours a day. (Week 2) Things are going well. My teeth have moved. The aligners are now on the loose side so I know my teeth have shifted. I'm getting so used to wearing the aligners now, I don't think about having them on. Getting them in and out now is a breeze. No one at my work has noticed that I'm wearing them as of yet. Waiting to start my second tray in a few more days.


3 Comments

Thanks for posting some photos - I'll be looking forward to watching as your teeth shift into a more comfortable bite for you! :)

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Thanks Megan! I plan on updating my progress with every new tray. Stay tuned!

Its good to hear you have figured out how to take your trays on & off without much problems. It sounds like you are really dedicated to wearing your trays and taking good care of your teeth - good job with that!! Please keep us updated on how things are going for you.

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(Weeks 3 &4) Aligners 2 of 24 The first few...

(Weeks 3 &4) Aligners 2 of 24
The first few days of tray #2 went much better than tray #1 of my treatment. It was much easier to deal with the aligners. My teeth wern't as sore with the aligners in or while removing them. I did run into one problem at the end of the first week with tray #2. My bottom aligner developed a crack while removing it. The crack was behind the last attachment, and it caused my aligner to float a bit over my back two molars. I called my Dentists office the next morning and they ordered a replacement. They advised me to keep using it until the new aligner arrived. I've been wearing the aligners for a month now and wearing them has become routine. The biggest hassle for me is eating out in public, and having to brush and floss in a public restroom. Ready to start tray #3!

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Thanks feebm! What I like most about Invisalign is after six weeks of wearing them no one I work or socialize with has noticed them. Good luck with your decision.
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Thank you so much for posting I thinking of getting Invisalign myself so I glad to to thear that things are going well i will keep checking on your progress
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Thanks for uploading your Clincheck! Isn't fun to watch the changes they are planning?!! Excited for you. :)

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(Weeks 5 & 6) Aligners 3 of 24 My third set...

(Weeks 5 & 6) Aligners 3 of 24
My third set of aligners were tight to get on the first time. I put them in after dinner (6pm) and kept them in until noon the next day, 18 hours. I removed them for lunch and when I went to put them back in I had a much easier time. My teeth were a little bit sore, especially my bottom teeth. As you can see from my photos and animation, my bottom teeth will be pulled down as well as straightened. So far through my treatment I haven't had the need for Advil or any other product to deal with discomfort. It's really not that bad, and like clockwork after the first few days the discomfort went away.

A week into tray #3 my bottom aligner developed a small crack, and in the same place as my #2 bottom aligner did. I didn't bother calling my Dentist for a replacement. In a few days I'm going to the Dentist for my first scheduled appointment, and to get my next three sets of trays. I've change my removal technique on the bottom aligner and with the new trays I'll see if that will prevent a future crack. Looking forward to seeing some movement over the next six weeks.

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Thanks Jake! Good luck with your upcoming treatment.
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Thank you. I've already noticed that spaces have been created between all of my teeth, from only my first aligner. Take Care- Jake
Can't wait to see the results farther down the line of your treatment process. Good luck.
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(Weeks 7 & 8) Aligners 4 of 24 Not much new...

(Weeks 7 & 8) Aligners 4 of 24
Not much new to report. Tray #4 was a breeze. I've perfected my removal technique, and didn't have any issues with cracking my bottom aligner. I've been wearing my Invisalign aligners for two months now, and wearing them has become the "norm". In fact it feels weird when I have them out. I'm still wearing them about 23 hours a day. Moving on to tray #5. Two months down, nine months to go!

4 Comments

Good luck feebm! Keep us informed on your progress.
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HI Megan so I decided to get the invisalign on go this friday to have my teeth to get everything started cant wail!
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Oh that is awesome feebm! You should start a review so we can watch your progress with you!! :)

(Weeks 9 &10) Aligners 5 of 24 My teeth are...

(Weeks 9 &10) Aligners 5 of 24
My teeth are definitely on the move, so much in fact I noticed my bottom teeth will now slightly wiggle. It's a bit unsettling to see your teeth wiggle around when the aligners are out, but it shows that my teeth are moving towards their new positions. My center bottom tooth no longer touches the gums behind my front teeth. It's been pulled down enough so it now has clearance. My bite overall has noticeably improved. So far, so good! Moving on to tray #6 tonight!!

11 Comments

Hi Hoping, This is something you'll have to consult with your Dentist about. My guess would be you'll have to get the gum graft before you get molds done for your retainers. I know with my lower tray, it fits right down to where my graft is. As for the procedure itself, it took about two hours, and I endured it with novacane, and a sedation pill that did nothing for me. Healing time is a few weeks...
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Hi ocdave, I was just reading about your gum graft there as my receding gums seem to have got worse with Invisalign. Two teeth on my lower arch now have the roots completely exposed. I only noticed that last weekend. I'm on tray 11/19 so not that long to go, thankfully. I think I will have to see a peridontist about gum grafting once I'm finished but I'm wondering how that will affect wearing the retainer when the Invisalign treatment is finished. I suspect I wouldn't be able to wear a a retainer until the new gums have 'set'.

Is it a really really painful experience?? I dread the thoughts of it but suspect it's inevitable.
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greenjean, our issues are spot on, and like you I had a gum graft to cover my two front bottom teeth...lol That was such an enjoyable experience, having a trench cut out in your upper pallet. Thankfully it was successful, because I wouldn't want to do that again. You can see my graft a little in picture tray 4/24 I posted. My next pic post I'll widen out to show everyone. WoW, and you're right I've got this one covered for us both! Stay tuned!! :)
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(Weeks 11&12) Trays 6 of 24 Tray six felt very...

(Weeks 11&12) Trays 6 of 24
Tray six felt very tight going on the first time. I would classify it as an aggressive tray. Lots of pressure on my lower teeth pushing them down. Upper wasn't so bad, just a little tight. Going into week two of the trays, my bottom teeth are still a bit tender. I've been eating everything with a knife and fork, sparing my front teeth any tearing. My front teeth still feel like they are loose, and I'm trying to go easy on them through this process. Three months down, eight months to go. On to tray #7!!

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Hi Megan, I just started on tray#7 last night and I compared it to tray#1, and what a difference. I get three trays at a time and I also compared tray#1 with tray#9, and there will be big changes over the coming weeks! I can't wait!!
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Very cool!! Kind of fun to get to see where your teeth will be in 6 weeks, huh?! Looking forward to seeing the pictures! :)

I can see a difference in your bottom teeth. It looks like the angle, in relation to their height, is reduced compared to your earlier pictures - exciting!! :)

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(Weeks 13&14) Trays 7 of 24 Tray #7 was a lot...

(Weeks 13&14) Trays 7 of 24
Tray #7 was a lot like tray #6, in regards to my lower aligner. Lots of downward pressure on my bottom front teeth. I compared tray #7 to tray #1, and the difference is remarkable. My dentist gives me three trays at a time so I also compared tray #1 to my upcoming tray #9, and I look forward to the upcoming big changes to my bottom teeth.
Recently I was contacted by a member and they asked if my attatchments ever pinched the inside of my mouth when I was eating. In my earlier reviews I never wrote about that. During the first month of my treatment I was having an issue with that. I have an attatchment on my bottom left canine, and often when I'd chew it would pinch the inside of my bottom lip, and quite painful at times. As my bite began to improve over the first month, I stopped biting my lip, and it's no longer an issue.
I also changed my Dentist's "time spent with me" rating to 3 stars because since my treatment started I haven't been examined by him. I've only met with an Asst., who just gives me my next 3 sets of trays. By the time I get through tray #9 it will have been 18 weeks. When I started my treatment I was told all of my appointments were included in the fee, and I assumed appointments meant that my Dentist would be more involved. I'll be sure to ask about this on my next visit. Getting started on tray #8!

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I read about your dentist not seeing you and having his assistant give you the trays....I'd maybe say something, because he needs to make sure theres no tightness in between the teeth because it means things aren't moving as they should. Might be something small but could make a difference later on in the treatment. My dentist would double check for space with floss and if anything was tight she's just put a finishing strip in between to make sure things had room to move. No filing or anything but it did make a difference :) They should be with you every step of the way.
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Fast approaching week 14/48, my treatment is flying by. On another note Megan, I tried uploading another photo to my review and I wasn't able too. Is 7 pics the max on a RealSelf review?
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Glad you were able to upload the photo - tray 7 did change your teeth a lot! No wonder you were feeling so much pressure from them - looking good!!

(Weeks 15&16) Trays 8 of 24 Not much to report...

(Weeks 15&16) Trays 8 of 24
Not much to report other than my bite continues to change, causing a bit of pressure on my top right molars while eating. I'm sure it's a passing thing.
My next scheduled Dentist appointment is next Wednesday, and I'll be sure to ask to see him, and question his involvement or lack there of, in my treatment. Tonight, tray #9...

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Good advise Megan, will do. Things are on the move and I just want to be sure they're moving correctly.
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Thanks Brooke, I go in next Wednesday to pick up 6 sets of trays, I have a long summer vacation planned and won't be in town to pick up trays in July and August. I'm going to request to see him then and question his lack of involvement with my treatment. We'll see. At this point I'm starting to regret my decision on going with a Cosmetic Dentist instead of an Ortho...
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You may have already done this, but make sure to call the office before your appointment & let them know you would like to see the doctor if they haven't been scheduling him in regularly on your visits. A lot of office schedules are kept really tight, so if you don't let them know ahead of time the doctor might be schedule with other patients the entire time you are there.

It looks like your upper arch has expanded out nicely on your tray 8 picture compared to your beginning picture. I wasn't noticing it in the others, then in tray 8 it just seemed so obviously changed!

(Weeks 17&18) Trays 9 of 24 Now four months into...

(Weeks 17&18) Trays 9 of 24
Now four months into treatment I can see and feel real changes. My upper tray I'd classify as very aggressive. The first time I removed it it felt like I was going to pull out my front teeth. It reminded me of tray #1, but that went away after a few days.
I went to my Dentist appointment to pick up my next four trays to get me through most of the summer. At that time I asked my Invisalign coordinator about my treatment and would my Dentist examine me anytime during my treatment. She responded "not unless I lose an attatchment or have any other problem, that I wouldn't be seeing him on my scheduled tray pickup appointments." I asked about should he be checking the spacing or anything else during the course of my treatment. She assured me as long as my trays are fitting properly every two weeks there's nothing to worry about. "Let the trays do there job, and after I finish tray #21, my Dentist would examine me." "At that point he'll see where I'm at, and decide if I should finish the last three trays or make new molds etc."
I did get to see my last tray #24, and it was very exciting to see all of my teeth straight. We'll see what happens, I've been doing my part. I'm still wearing my trays around 23 hours a day. Keeping the faith and moving on to tray #10!

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No I didn't get to see him. My Invisalign coordinator said I wouldn't be seeing him until after I finish tray #21, unless I have a problem. At that point he'll decide if I should finish my last three trays or make new impressions to make any adjustments. She said as long as my trays are fitting ok every two weeks, not to worry, and let the trays do there job...
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Wow, what a difference between your first picture and where you are at now! I love that you are posting photos so regularly for us! Were you able to see the doctor at your last visit?

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Weeks 19&20) Trays 10 of 24 I feel my progress is...

Weeks 19&20) Trays 10 of 24
I feel my progress is really starting to show. I see and feel real changes. My teeth are still on the loose side. The last few sets of aligners have been what I'd consider aggressive, and are really starting to shift my teeth around. Just a few weeks away from my halfway point. Starting tray #11 tonight!

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(Weeks 21&22, 23&24) Trays 11/12 of 24 After a...

(Weeks 21&22, 23&24) Trays 11/12 of 24
After a three week vacation and two more trays under my belt my smile is really starting to change. After viewing many vacation photos I'm starting to like what I see, a better smile and straighter teeth! I'm past the halfway point now and almost a week into tray #13!

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(Weeks 25&26) Trays 13 of 24 Nothing new to...

(Weeks 25&26) Trays 13 of 24
Nothing new to report, just going through the motions week after week. My Invisalign treatment has become so routine it feels normal now. I'm still wearing my trays 23 hours a day. I'm doing my part to have a successful treatment. In my review, under the "was it worth it," I still have "not sure" checked. I'm going to leave it that way in my review until my treatment is complete, and see the final results, and then decide. Now on to tray #14!

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Thanks Kristen for your well wishes! I love the RealSelf site for the advise, and reading and sharing in everyone's experiences. @ Megan, thanks for being here for everyone, and for being the best cheerleader!
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I think its great that you are waiting until you are finished with your treatment to check "Worth It" or "Not Worth It". I'm still loving watching those lower front teeth move into position!

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BTW I see huge change from Tray 1 to Tray 13. WOW.
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(Weeks 27&28) Trays 14 of 24 I still have to be...

(Weeks 27&28) Trays 14 of 24

I still have to be careful while eating. My top and bottom teeth are loose, and it's starting to irritate me. I'm getting to the point where I just want this to be over. Tray 15, here we go...

6 Comments

Sorry to hear you are getting tired of the treatment, ocdave. That is understandable. On the plus side you are over halfway there!!! With the huge changes in your bite that we can see in the photos my guess is you will be really glad you stuck with it...of course that doesn't really help much right now though, does it? :-/

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Oh go ahead WHINE all you want. That's what we're here for. lol
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Well don't let my whining discourage you Kristen, I'll keep plodding along. It's great when you start seeing results. Hang in there as well!
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(Weeks 29&30) Trays 15 of 24 Thirty weeks down,...

(Weeks 29&30) Trays 15 of 24
Thirty weeks down, eighteen weeks to go. I went in for a regular cleaning this week and spoke with my Dentist. He examined me and said everything looked like it was on track. He will examine me again at tray # 21 and hopefully no refinements will be needed. I'm keeping my fingers crossed. Now on to tray 16....

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(Weeks 31&32) Trays 16 of 24 Getting so close now...

(Weeks 31&32) Trays 16 of 24
Getting so close now I can taste it. According to my clincheck animation my next three trays, 17, 18, and 19, will conclude the straightening process. The remaining 5 trays will pull my teeth back, and hopefully correct the overjet a bit. We'll see, starting tray 17...

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Hi Rachelle, thank you for your support! I stumbled onto the RealSelf website when I started my treatment. I read some reviews and thought it would be a nice way to track my progress, find answers, and possibly help and support others along the way. It's been a great outlet for sharing the experience.
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Hello, I love reading your blog. It is really very impressive. I want to leave a comment in your support. Carry on with good continuation. Best of luck for your blogging efforts. invisalign nyc
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Hey shantas, So far I haven't had a problem with my tongue being sore, and don't anticipate having one. I do lightly file certain edges of each new tray, knocking down sharp areas that poke the inside of my cheeks. Eating out still remains a problem for me, and like you I usually do it in the car before I leave the restaurant now, just easier for me. I'm on tray 17 now, almost a week in. You should start seeing some changes soon over your next few trays. Good luck with your treatment, and keep in touch!
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(Weeks 33&34) Trays 17 of 2 I now see a gap for...

(Weeks 33&34) Trays 17 of 2
I now see a gap for the first time between my right central incisor, and my right lateral incisor. If you look at my start pictures you'll see that the right lateral incisor was turned behind my central incisor. I can now see the whole tooth, which is amazing after being patially hidden for so long. Everything seems to be on track. Next up, tray 18...

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(Weeks 35&36) Trays 18 of 24 This set of trays...

(Weeks 35&36) Trays 18 of 24
This set of trays was a breeze. I only had tightness with them for a few days. Most of the straightening has been done. Looks like now I'm just down to minimal movements. With luck the end is near. Tray 19 tomorrow...

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The idea of having my teeth filed on doesn't sound that appealing to me. I know it's not supposed to be a big deal, but I do have worries of future sensitivity on those teeth. Good luck with your treatment! Once you get a few weeks under your belt it becomes routine. Keep us posted on your progress!
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Hi shady, the invisalign trays actually push your teeth back down into the gums, while straightening. As for refinement trays, I meet with my Dentist in about four more weeks, after tray # 21. He's going to evaluate my progress, and see if I should continue with the next and last three sets of trays or make new impressions for refinement trays. My guess is that I'll need refinement trays. After having been through this process for the last 39 weeks I know trays 20, and 21 won't move my teeth enough to make me happy. My upper left cuspid is out of alignment and sticks out a bit. My overjet needs a bit more correction as well, and I'll probably need some IPR (interproximal reduction), but with any luck I'd prefer to avoid that if possible. Refinement trays won't close the gaps that are now in between my lower teeth, and to be honest the gaps don't bother me. Also my lower left and right cuspids are not flat across the tops, so they'll never be perfect unless I have them reshaped, which I'm not. I've come a long way from where I started, and I hope to be happy with the end results. Have you started your treatment yet or are you on the fence?
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I'm so excited for you! There's a great amount of results from the beginning of your treatment. I've started my treatment just few days ago and i've been feeling tightness on my lower incisors. I'll be putting up some picture really soon when I get approval from the realself community. I will be doing some IPR to correct my deep bite and overjet. Why do you want to avoid IPR?

(Weeks 37&38) Trays 19 of 24 Two more sets of...

(Weeks 37&38) Trays 19 of 24
Two more sets of trays to go before my Dentist evaluates my progress. As of now my left canine tooth sticks out a bit, and my overbite still needs some correction. Now that I'm an Invisalign pro I know that these corrections won't happen with my next two sets of trays. I anticipate getting new molds for refinement trays which at this point I won't mind. I'm nearly 40 weeks into my treatment, what's another few months... Tray 20

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Wow, you have a great attitude about your refinements! You are right though, you have come this far might as well keep marching on until they look just how you want them.

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(Weeks 39&40) Trays 20 of 24 The last couple of...

(Weeks 39&40) Trays 20 of 24
The last couple of trays were not that aggressive. I don't notice any changes other than my teeth don't feel loose anymore. I'm now moving on to tray 21, my last tray before my Dentist evaluates my progress. I don't anticipate any real changes with this tray either. I believe my initial coarse of treatment has reached the end. Here we go, tray 21...

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Hi Megan, my evaluation appointment is on Dec. 19th., and my guess is 10 sets of refinement trays. I'll post some new pics next week. Have a great weekend!
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When is your appointment for your dentist to do the re-eval? I'm curious to hear what he says. Your teeth look really good, but the lowers are still arched up a bit so I'm guessing he'll address that with the refinements. I'm still in awe of the amount of change!! We could all take guesses at the number of refinement trays needed - of course we would play by The Price Is Right rules, so we'd need to bet conservatively so as to not lose the showcase. ;)

Would you post a picture with your teeth biting down? I'd love to see the amount of overlap between your uppers and lowers in the front.

 

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(Weeks 41&42) Trays 21 of 24 I finished up tray...

(Weeks 41&42) Trays 21 of 24
I finished up tray 21 which I feel really didn't do much of anything. I've reached the end of my first coarse of treatment. I met with my Dentist on December 19th for my one and only exam with him during the last 42 weeks. He said my teeth looked fantastic. I don't agree, and I pointed out a few obvious things with my teeth that I wasn't happy with. I told him I'd need refinement trays. I got the feeling he was trying to rush me out of treatment. He had an assistant make molds of my teeth, not for Invisalign, but for my next consultation with him on January 7, 2013. This will provide him a 3D rendering of my teeth. We'll see what happens on the 7th. In the mean time anyone contemplating Invisalign, do yourself a favor and don't have anyone other than an Orthodontist prescribe your treatment plan. Do not use a regular or cosmetic Dentist for your treatment. Big mistake! I moved on to tray 22+. The + trays just tighten up the gaps in your teeth, the straightening part is over.

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(Weeks 43&44) Trays 22 of 24 Tray 22 was a (+)...

(Weeks 43&44) Trays 22 of 24
Tray 22 was a (+) tray. It was a bit tight getting on, and definitely lots of inward pressure on my teeth. The pressure lasted for the first week then subsided a bit. I'm waiting for my next consultation on January 7th to discuss future treatment, refinements. I think my teeth are much better from where I started, but I'm not totally happy. I'm not expecting a perfect outcome, I just want to get my teeth looking as good as possible. Tray 23+...

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Ok, its the day we've been waiting for - its Jan. 7th! Please let us know what goes on at the consult!!

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I met with my Dentist on January 7th for my...

I met with my Dentist on January 7th for my cosultation., He started out by saying he thought both of my arches, upper and lower, looked fine. I told him my concerns regarding my teeth. The lowers I'm pretty much happy with, but they could still use a tweak. The uppers, I want to reduce my overjet as much as possible. He voiced some concerns with the angle of my teeth, and that pulling the upper teeth back will put my teeth at an angle that doesn't follow the bone structure. He said this could lead to stability problems, and possible gum recession. He also mentioned jaw surgery to remove bone, and then pull the upper teeth back. That sounds a bit extreme to me and not an option. Seems like my only two options are to leave my teeth the way they are, or get some IPR to reduce the overjet, and the possible complications that go with that. So far I haven't read anywhere about such problems trying to reduce an overjet with tooth angle and bone structure issues he mentioned. I now go back on January 30th to get my attatchments removed, and they'll make new molds of my teeth either for retainers or if I decide to continue with treatment. I think I'll opt for new molds and a new clincheck to show possible results with IPR, and then make my mind up after that. Stay tuned....

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Thanks for updating us. Sorry to hear it sounds like your options are limited. :-/ I just looked at your original Clincheck again at full screen, and there does appear to be quite a bit of overjet left at the end of that treatment. The teeth still look great, but its not text book perfect. Do you feel your teeth are at in about the same relation in real life as they are in the final part of the current Clincheck video?

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I'm now waiting to start round 2 of my Invisalign...

I'm now waiting to start round 2 of my Invisalign treatment. I will have 26 refinement trays, that's right another year of treatment. The new trays will address an open bite problem with my right side molars, lengthening and straightening my upper right lateral tooth, widening my upper arch which will help fix my bite issue, and will also allow my front teeth to be pulled back a bit to reduce my overjet. I will not need any IPR which is fine with me. So for now I'm just waiting on my new trays to come in to get started.

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Hang in there shantas. I've had the same thoughts as you, if I should've opted for metal braces, and if I did would the results have been more predictable. I made the decision to go with Invisalign a year ago and I'm now in it for the next year, doubling my treatment time. I just hope I get results I'm happy with, time will tell. tc
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Hi ocdave: OMG another year of tx! You are sure giving me the encouragement to continue on with my possible refinement! I am on tray 12 of 13, I still have overjet and some gaps at the bottom teeth, my dentist said I may have to go for refinement. I am already tired of this whole process, hating invisalign and wondering if I should have opted out for metal braces as I don't seem to see much of a change with the overjet. But you are giving me hope!! Thanks
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Hey Kristen, yeah it's a bit of a bummer to have to go through another year but the way my teeth are now I don't have much of a choice. I do like the current clincheck, and hopefully the end result will be similar. Keeping my fingers crossed... How is your treatment coming along?
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I started with my refinement trays. I have 26...

I started with my refinement trays. I have 26 trays and I wear each tray for two weeks. I just finished up on tray #1. 50 more weeks to go, that's right I'm counting. I'm hoping over the next year I get results I can live with. Moving on to refinement tray #2...

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Kristen, that's great that your half way done. I checked out your pics and your teeth are coming along nicely! It'll be over with before you know it, and hopefully you won't need refinements. p.s. I only have 11 months and three days to go :) TC
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Ha! I need to update a new picture I've gotten way lazy.
Good luck shantas on your new upcoming treatment plan! Let us know how you like your new clincheck when it comes in, and how many attatchments and trays you'll have!!
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(Weeks 3&4) Refinement trays 2 of 26 One thing...

(Weeks 3&4) Refinement trays 2 of 26
One thing I've noticed with the first 2 sets of refinement trays and even a few days into the latest tray 3 is that they've not been very aggressive trays. My teeth haven't really been sore when I remove my trays. Usually my teeth are sore when removing a new tray for the first few days, so there seems to be minimal movement going on at this point. Looking at my clincheck it's showing movement so I feel I should be feeling it more. I'll ask my Dentist about it next week when I go in to get 3 new sets of trays.

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Good luck Jayelzee with your consultation. I'm in treatment with a Cosmetic Dentist, and I regret not getting a consultation with an Orthodontist. Afterall they specialize in tooth movement. Let us know what happens! Tc, Dave
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I've got a first consult for insivalign next week so I really appreciate how you've tracked your progress!
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(Weeks 5&6) Refinement trays 3 of 26 I picked up...

(Weeks 5&6) Refinement trays 3 of 26
I picked up my next 3 sets of trays from my Dentist's office. Tray #3 fit better than the previous two trays. I told my coordinator about the loose fit I've been having with my trays. I also told her my teeth wern't feeling sore during the first few days of a new tray. She told me if I had the same problem with tray #4, they would probably have to do new molds, and new trays. I'll know in a few days...

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Thanks Hoping! I still have around 10 months to go. I saw my Dentist yesterday so he could check the fit of my trays. He said they looked fine and not to worry. So no new impressions, which is a relief. Hopefully your next round won't be so long. btw your teeth and smile look amazing! Hi Kristen, I'm still plodding along. No new molds, so I'm happy about that! Sorry it took so long to get back to you. tc
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Hi Dave, your teeth are looking great! I see you're on a fairly lengthy refinement treatment but even if you stopped now, I would still say you have lovely teeth! Fair play to you for sticking with it. I'm about to start my refinement. I'm hoping it won't be that long. I had the impressions done today. It's really just to expand on one side to get better symmetry. I had a 'mid course correction' too which added 21 trays, so I understand how you felt when you heard about the long refinement!
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Seriously? U are NOT having good luck with this. I'm irritated for u! oh & Happy Easter!
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(Weeks 7-12) Refinement trays 4,5&6 of 26 I'm now...

(Weeks 7-12) Refinement trays 4,5&6 of 26 I'm now finishing up tray #6 in a few days. Progress seems to be very slow if any at all. I met with my Dentist about a month ago to talk about the fit of my aligners. He thought the fit was fine, but I'm still not very confident in their fit. So far the trays have been easy to pop in and out, even on the first few days. I'm not feeling sore teeth the first few days either on a new tray. I brought up my concerns again to my Invisalign coordinator yesterday when I picked up my next three sets of trays. She scheduled me an appointment to see my Dentist in 6 more weeks, after the next three sets of trays, so he can evaluate my progress and make sure my teeth are on track. Fingers crossed....

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Yesterday I moved on to tray #7. I popped in the...

Yesterday I moved on to tray #7. I popped in the upper tray and it was floppy loose, not wearable. I immediately called my Dentist's office and they saw me a few hours later. They looked at the tray and finally agreed the trays aren't right. So they took new molds of my teeth and will send those back to Invisalign. The new trays should arrive in a few weeks they said. I'm afraid now that I've wasted 3 1/2 months fooling around with loose fitting trays. We'll see how many trays will be in this mid correction, hopefully not 26. This whole process is getting very frustrating to say the least.

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Hi David, It's not hard for me at all. I'm not a snacker, and I normally do not eat breakfast. I do eat a large lunch and dinner. Lunch is always around 12- 1 and dinner at 6:30 - 7, and I brush right after I finish eating no matter where I am at the time. That's the key...no waiting around. I've been in treatment for 15 months now and it's just routine now. How far along are you in your treatment?
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I'm just in week 2! Your story is definitely an inspiration. I still can't kick my hour-long sipping of my morning coffee habit. Sorry to hear you're having a rough go of it as of late, but your progress thus far is amazing.
I'm super impressed you're able to consistently wear them 23 hours a day--when do you eat?? I feel like with just eating I bring myself down to 21 hours.
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5-13-2013 Refinement Tray 6/26

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Hi Charlene, my Dentist is a cosmetic Dentist, not an Orthodontist. The first year wasn't so bad, I haven't had much luck since starting my refinement. The latest, after waiting two weeks for my newest molds to come in, the Dentist's office called and they had to recheck my bite before the new clincheck could be approved. Another two weeks down the tube. I've now been wearing aligner 6 for 5 weeks, and still waiting in limbo. If I had to do it all over again I would've chose an Ortho and went with metal braces. Now this is my bed and I have to see it through. Fun times with Invisalign, not...
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Hopefully once you get rollin again there will be a light at the end of the tunnel! Its unfortunate that many with bad experiences comes from what sounds to be an inexperienced Dr. for your particular case. At least it's only refinements and it doesn't sound like anything too major! (Other than a being a major pain in the @$$ ;))
I'm sorry you've had a rough run with this so far. Is your provider a specialized dentist or an orthodontist?
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6-6-2013 Mid-coarse correction. Second set of refinement trays, 18 Trays

I finally picked up my new (second) set of refinement trays. I have a total of 18 trays, top and bottom on this go round. The fit seems to be fine, and now hopefully I'll see the results I've been hoping for at the end of the 36 weeks. I'll keep you posted on my progress.

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Hi Charlene, ask your Dentist's office to email it to you.That's all I did, in fact I'm calling them on Monday to have my new clincheck sent to me.
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how is everyone getting ahold of their ClinChecks? I saw mine at the dentist office but didn't know you could have a personal one (?)
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Just ask your ortho to email you it. That's how I got mine!

6-6-2013 Mid-coarse correction Clincheck

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6-6-2013 Mid-coarse correction Clincheck

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6-6-2013 Mid-coarse correction Clincheck

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6-6-2013 Mid-coarse correction Clincheck, 18 Trays

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(Weeks 1&2) Tray 1 of 18

The first few days of tray #1 I could definitely tell we were back to moving teeth again. The tray fit tight, and my teeth were a bit sore the first few days. The previous six trays I feel were a waste of time. Seems like things back on track again.

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(Weeks 3&4) Tray 2 of 18

Definitely have movement with these trays, just hopefully the right movements...

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(Weeks 5&6) Tray 3 of 18

Plodding along...

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Thanks Megan! I'll keep posting my progress till the end of treatment.
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So glad you continue to faithfully post your photos. I love to go back and compare your very first photo with where you are at each time you update!

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7-31-2013 Refinement Tray 4/18

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8-14-2013 Refinement Tray 5/18

Progress is slow, if any....

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8-28-2013 Refinement Tray 6/18

I saw my Dentist today for a cleaning and examination. My bite on the right side is still open. It has closed a bit since starting this round of refiners. Also my upper right lateral tooth is not turning as it should. For now we'll stay the coarse. Stay tuned, I smell another refinement in my future...

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I know what you mean Charlene, I'm so over the trays too. I just want this to be over....
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Ugh, that's unfortunate! I hope that when I'm "done" I really am done! After a year of expansion and ~1 yr of invisalign as of May '14 I'll have had enough of orthodontic work. Trays become a pain in the rear when your social life starts to revolve around them...hah
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Hi Kristen, yeah definitely not what I was led to believe or expected. When you're shown those silly clincheck cartoons of how your teeth are going to look at the end of treatment, that's where they make the sale. In reality you should be told about the problems moving teeth around this way (Invisalign) can create, and possibly doubling your initial time of treatment or more. If I had known up front that I'd be facing over two years of treatment I would've opted for metal braces. But I'm stuck in the bed I've made for myself. By not choosing an orthodontist up front I don't even have the option of switching to braces, which I would've done by now. So for now I'm on tray 11 of 18. Tooth movement stops at #15, so I'm getting close to finishing up my first refinement. My next refinement my dentist told me he'd cut off the bottom right molar section of the tray to allow my molars to move up and close the open bite I still have, and that was created by my first treatment. Anyway stay tuned, we'll see what happens. Good luck with your troubles as well. Tc
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(Weeks 13-14) Refinement Tray 7/18

When will this be over...

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(Weeks 15-16)

....

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(Weeks 17-18) Refinement Tray 9/18

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(Weeks 19-20) Refinement Tray 10/18

I was examined by my Dentist today. It looks like I'll have another refinement in my future.

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(Weeks 21-22) Refinement Tray 11/18

I've been at this for so long now there's not much to report anymore. I'll keep posting my photos after every tray as I've done from the start.

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Thanks for keeping on the updates. I am a little curious as to if your dentist plans to shave down any of the surfaces to help you close those gaps between teeth, and possibly even out the bite line? I know your primary concern is your bite. The progress you've made is really cool to see. Here's hoping you'll be done soon!
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Hi Latentsmile, my Dentist and I haven't discussed any shaving of teeth. I don't really like the sound of that to be honest. I know I wont achieve a perfect result the way my teeth are, but I'm just looking for the best possible result with what I have to deal with.

(Weeks 23-24) Refinement Tray 12/18

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(Weeks 25-26) Refinement Tray 13/18

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(Weeks 27-28) Refinement Tray 14/18

Moving on to Refinement Tray #15, the last tooth alignment tray. The next three trays are (+) trays, and they just tighten the gaps. My right side still has an open bite on the back molars, so I'm sure I have another refinement. I see my Dentist in a few more weeks. I'll let you know what the outcome is.

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Hi Kristen, I should've done more research before choosing invisalign. My dentist told me "I was a perfect candidate for invisalign", so I believed him. He made it sound so easy. I could kick myself for not going to an orthodontist. If i could do it all over again I would've gone with metal braces. I believe it would've been a better coarse of treatment for my case, and I'm sure a shorter duration. My original treatment time has nearly doubled, 2 years at this time, and by the time it's all said and done, like you said it'll be 3 years. Invisalign seems fine for mild corrections, but for anything even remotely complicated, I'd run for the hills.
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Don't ya wish someone would of just told us up front that this could be a 3 year project? I mean everyone hears 10 months-1 year and of course thinks how great that is. Have we met anyone who was actually done in that time frame? Yep, nope. (Sigh) it'll be great SOON. Whatever soon means in dentist terms, lol
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(Weeks 29-30) Refinement Tray 15/18

I've reached the end of this very long 22 tray refinement. I see my Dentist in a few weeks after I finish tray 16+, to discuss the next round of treatment....fun times

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(Weeks 31-40) Refinement Tray 16+/18

I've been wearing tray 16 for 2 1/2 months now. The right side molar area has been cut off of the tray to allow my right side molars to super erupt to close my open bite. It has closed a bit. I go back to the Dentist tomorrow to see about getting new molds of my teeth for a later consultation on what we do going forward. I'm pretty happy with my teeth other than my right lateral tooth is flared out and needs to be turned a bit. During the last coarse of trays my aligner never fit firmly against that tooth. There was an approximate 1/8" inch gap between the botton of the tray and my right lateral tooth. In order for the trays to work I know the trays need to be tight against your teeth. Had the trays fit perfectly from the start, I believe that tooth would've moved into position. I want to get one more refinement to fix that one tooth, then I should be done with this treatment. Stay tuned....

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Thanks Nadine, good luck with your treatment as well!
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Wow! Can't believe all the trouble you've gone through! But good on you for pushing for the results you want and deserve. I am going through an orthodontist for my treatment but had always thought how much cheaper it would of been if I'd gone through my dentist. But after reading a few reviews on here I'm glad I chose the ortho! Good luck with your final refinements!! Looking good!!
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Improper fitting set of trays

Here is a picture of my current tray showing the improper fit on my right lateral tooth. All 16 of my trays fit this way. Without an optimal fit, you'll have less than optimal results. If you look at my pictures during my refinement, you'll see no change or movement in the right lateral tooth. During the coarse of this refinement I told my Dentist more than several times I didn't feel any pressure on that tooth, and that it was do to the improper fit. Moral of the story, if you have a tray that doesn't fit, have them take new molds, or you'll be adding more time to your treatment.

15 Comments

Picture 6 was the best pic to show you the graft. I had the graft done a few years before I started the Invisalign. You can't really tell other than the gum color is slightly different. It was painful for a few days but your mouth heals pretty fast. I also had a pretty large graft. Recovery time I'm sure will vary depending on what you have done.
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Ahh, thanks for the clarification!  Nice to know that it blends in so seamlessly.  The pink color is what we want, after all :).  Has it helped you with sensitivity and the like?

Also, if you click the reply button under someone's comment, it will notify them that you've answered, in case they aren't following all comments.  Otherwise, it just puts a general comment under your review :).
I never had any issues with sensitivity. My gum recession was due to bone loss from the beginning stages of periodontal disease. Once I got all of that area stabilized I went ahead and had my graft. With any luck this should give me long term stability in that area. So far so good.

End of the Invisalign road...

Well I've reached the end of my Invisalign treatment. I had a consultation with my Dentist last week to discuss the results of my last two years of treatment, and what I feel is a so so end result, and my general displeasure with Invisalign. I still have a lateral right front tooth that's not quite straight, and during the first 22 trays of treatment it was also pushed up, now making it shorter than it's left counterpart. He suggested grinding down the tooth and either bonding it or putting on a veneer to make it match the left tooth, something I'm not going to do.

Also the Invisalign trays created an open bite on my right side during the coarse of my initial 22 trays, my 18 refinement trays were supposed to close up the open bite but did not. Over the last 4 months I've been wearing my refinement trays 17+, and, 18+, with the right side molar area cut off. Leaving my molar area open to super erupt, to try and close the gap. So far that hasn't worked. My Dentist suggested grinding down some (good) teeth to help close the open bite.

At that point I knew this journey with Invisalign was over. I'm not going to have my teeth ground down to fix the open bite issue Invisalign created. He also suggested seeing an Orthodontist to straighten out these issues, something I had already planned to do.

I'm now going to line up some consultations with a few Orthodontist's to see how to best finish up the job to my satisfaction. I told my Dentist at the consultation I didn't think I should've been treated with Invisalign, and had I known then what I know now I would've opted for regular braces. I believe my case was too complex to be treated with Invisalign, and in my opinion he had his hands full with my case.

I feel I should've been referred to an Orthodontist for braces when he initially suggested getting my teeth fixed, and that I was a perfect candidate for Invisalign. That being said I also take some of the blame and responsibility for making a quick rash decision, and not doing my homework and researching this all beforehand like I should have. I knew early on I made an expensive mistake by not doing that, and I felt early on in treatment I'd be right here in my current predicament, as you can read in my review.

My teeth are better off than when I started but after my two years of Invisalign treatment I can say I would not recommend this to anyone who has more than a very small fix. The limitations of Invisalign for me seem too great. First off in my experience don't believe what you're seeing on your Clincheck to be Gospel. This is a really neat animation (cartoon) and a wonderful selling tool for the product and the Dentist, showing how your teeth will look at the end of your treatment. That's what sold me on Invisalign. But in reality my results were not what the results on the cartoon showed. I have all three of mine posted, look for yourself.

Also with Invisalign you can't make corrections without making new molds. So no adjusting as you go or fine tuning as you can with braces. They also don't move molars very well, so the trays can't properly fix your bite, if your having bite issues. They can however create an open bite as I know.

As far as them being invisible, for some people that may be a plus. In my experience after you wear these trays for two years, 23 hours a day, you get to the point you could care less who knows you're wearing them or not, or where and when you take them out. Right now I would've much rather had braces with the more predictable results.

In closing, in my opinion, If I were to do it all over again I would not use a regular or cosmetic Dentist to prescribe my tooth movement. I regret making that choice for the following reasons. Do your homework. I would go to a Board Certified Orthodontist. That's their specialty, moving teeth. That's what they do day in and day out. In the event you choose Invisalign, through an Orthodontist, if for some reason you don't get your desired results, they can also put braces on you if needed. From the many reviews I've read probably at no additional or little cost to you. Most regular or cosmetic Dentist's cannot put braces on you, so you don't want to pay twice for the same treatment like I'm going to have to do, should I choose to go that route. Add that to the $5,900.00 dollars I already paid...costly mistake.

On a closing note, this whole entire review I have done over the past two years is my own personal experience with Invisalign. Everything expressed here within is my sole opinion and my take on my own experiences with all aspects of this treatment. Consult a professional for advise. Tc

6 Comments

UGH how disappointing. I'm glad you didn't go the route of grinding your teeth! That's one thing you can't take back. Hopefully your new ortho has some good insight.
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So I keep getting emails that you've updated your review, but I'm not seeing anything.  Is something not working for you?  Also, did you try to change your worth it rating to not worth it and it didn't work?  Let me know and I can change it for you :).
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Hi 2+1, I've been trying to change my worth it rating from "not sure" to "not worth it" to reflect my experience. The rating is not highlighted in blue so I'm not able to change it. Btw I go in for molds and records with my new Orthodontist on Monday! Should be starting soon. I'll keep everyone posted.

Getting braces to finish the job Invisalign couldn't

I consulted a very experienced Orthodontist on 5-1-2014 and he examined my teeth. One thing he pointed out quickly was that my two lateral incisors were crooked and flared, and both of their roots needed to be rotated. Something Invisalign was not capable of doing.

So in a nutshell he essentially told me the last year of refinement was a waste of time. He also said my open bite can be resolved with a few brackets and bands. My treatment time should be around 9 months to get things straightened out, possibly less.

So on 5-12-2014, I went in for xrays and impressions. My next appointment is on 5-28 to discuss the treatment plan and options in detail.

It's such feeling of relief to know that I'm now in capable hands. I'm looking forward to getting started and putting the Invisalign nightmare behind me.

Stay tuned....

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Useful, informative post. Thank you. I just finished my first year of Invisalign, and I'm going to start the refinement phase tomorrow. Because of your experience, I'm glad that I chose an orthodontist over a dentist. $5,900 is a lot of money! It's also important that the person you hire sees you personally, not his or her assistant(s). I'll remember that just in case it starts happening to me. Again, thank you for sharing your experiences with everyone.
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When you set up the review for braces, I will link it to this one so everyone can just click from this review to that one and vice versa if they start there.  I did the same thing for BatonRougeCutie so people who know her can continue to follow her, but new people looking up braces can also find her old story. :D 
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Thanks 2+1! I'd like to link the reviews. When I start the new review I'll shoot you a message... Ty
Waldorf Cosmetic Dentist

Dr Olson is an accredited cosmetic Dentist, who happens to be my regular Dentist. I felt comfortable using him for my Invisalign treatment rather than seeking out an Orthodontist. I hope I don't regret making that decision. The final results will tell the tale... Update: Well after 2 years of treatment I'm not happy with Invisalign or my results. The third sentence above that I wrote two years ago says it all. I now regret having a Dentist prescribe my tooth movement. I learned a very expensive, time consuming lesson. I will now seek the expertise of an Orthodontist to finish the job with braces, at additional cost. Something I should have done from the start.

3 out of 5 stars Overall rating
3 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
2 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
2 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
2 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
4 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
3 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
5 out of 5 stars Payment process
5 out of 5 stars Wait times
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