Top Tips for New Invisalign Users - Epping, GB

I'm 12 months into a 15 month Invisalign treatment...

I'm 12 months into a 15 month Invisalign treatment plan with trays top and bottom and 12 attachments. I did a lot of research before choosing Invisalign and used this site extensively to try to understand the pros and cons. 12 months in, whilst I'm looking forward to the end, I have no regrets about choosing this option over the others available.
In brief, I had fixed braces as a teenager but over time my teeth moved more or less back to where they had been. I was particularly keen to widen my smile as the top teeth were in more of a vee shape and I felt self conscious smiling - I had quite a rodent look! My bottom row were a bit crooked and so I wanted to straighten those out too.
I was given 42 trays and originally told that it would take 18 months, now shortened to 15 as I moved from changing them every 2 weeks to every 10 days.

Tips:
1. The biggest thing to consider in my view before embarking on Invisalign is how disciplined a person you are. The regime is pretty strict and you have to stick with it for it to work. If you're naturally someone who doesn't do well with a routine, then it may not be for you. I'm regimented in cleaning and flossing straight after every meal in order to achieve the 20-22hrs per day wear and can't linger over a coffee like I used to.
2. I carry a toiletry bag with mini toothpaste, brush, mouthwash and floss everywhere.
3. The first 3 days of the first tray were the worst - it gets much, much easier and I've had minimal pain throughout.
4. Using the chewies is essential to really bedding the trays in, especially for the first few days of each new tray. You need to bite down on them hard - I use them every time I put the trays back in for the first few days.
5. I haven't experienced any change to my speech, except if I'm talking a lot or particularly quickly. When I had an interview recently, I removed my tray because I can be a little bit spitty if I'm talking a lot and I didn't want to risk it.
6. I clean the trays more or less each time I take them out with a little liquid soap and a separate brush.
7. Don't eat a curry if you have new trays! - Indian food contains a lot of coloured spices which stay inside your mouth regardless of how much brushing and mouthwash you use and then discolours the tray - as I discovered to my dismay.
8. I used a bit of dental putty at the very start, but didn't need it thereafter as the trays didn't cut into my mouth after the first one or two.
9. Don't use a coloured nail file to file down sharp edges on the trays as it discolours the plastic (again, I didn't need to do this except for the first couple of trays).
10. Your teeth do become a bit discoloured during the process, particularly, I found, around the attachments. Don't be alarmed - my dental hygienist was able to polish this away, so I've started seeing her more regularly whilst the treatment continues (every few months).

Finally, whilst it can feel like a bit of a pain especially when you're cleaning your teeth in a restaurant bathroom yet again and feeling self conscious, in my view it is absolutely worth it. Hardly anyone at work has noticed the trays, unless I've pointed them out and I stopped noticing them myself after just a few. I love the shape of my smile now and a year or so out of your life to be a little bit inconvenienced is really not much at all.

Good luck!
Epping Othodontic Practice

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