My Smile Direct Club Experience (So Far)

I'm definitely the type of person to read millions...

I'm definitely the type of person to read millions of reviews before I try anything, especially when it costs more than a few hundred dollars. I usually give companies the benefit of the doubt, but I definitely keep all of the bad reviews in the back of my mind.

When I first started researching Smile Direct Club, there were lots of negative reviews on the predecessor (Smile Care Club, which apparently changed its name to Smile Direct Club this year). Negative reviews ranged from horrible communication (or lack thereof), aligners not fitting properly and once again, dealing with horrible communication, etc. I also read several good reviews, so I decided to give them a try.

On September 14th, I completed my smile assessment, submitted photos of my teeth, and received an email the same day (only a few hours later) that I was a candidate for these invisible aligners (yay!). I was pretty impressed with the quick response, because one of the biggest things I've noticed in the negative reviews was the length of time people wait for responses and for their treatment to begin. After my assessment was accepted, I purchased my impression kit for $47.50 because I used an online coupon from Groupon, I believe. My impression kit was shipped out on the 14th.

On September 19th, I received my impression kit, and after several hours of reading the instructions and YouTubing how to properly take my impressions to ensure that my aligners will fit properly, I completed my impressions, packed them back up, and mailed them back on September 20th.

On September 24th, I received an email stating that my impression kit was received.

On September 28th, I received an email stating that my impressions were approved, and I also received a link to my 3-D smile plan (this was REALLY cool)! I'm so, so excited they were approved because I've read several reviews by people who've stated that their impression kits were not approved, therefore they'd have to redo their impressions. I'm not super patient, so I was happy to have been approved the first time around :)

On October 2nd, I received an email stating that SDC was creating my 3-D smile, which means they're printing each step of my treatment to create my custom aligners.

I haven't started with my treatment quite yet, but my experience so far has been outstanding. Any questions I have are usually answered within a few hours, either by email or via social media. Their Facebook page seems to be a good method of communication. Like I mentioned, patience is not something I'm very good at so I sent them messages asking if they anticipated a date for my impressions to be approved, etc., and they got back with me the same day, told me to expect an answer by such and such date, and sure enough, they were right! My experience with customer service has been great, so I'm pretty confident I will enjoy my treatment experience as well. One of the biggest complaints from previous reviews was the disappointing customer service, but they seem to have corrected those issues. I can't wait to receive my first aligners and start my treatment!

First Update (No aligners yet)

Hello!

The day I ordered my aligners (September 28th), I received an email shortly after my order was placed that I could expect my first set to be delivered in about 3 weeks, meaning I should have received my aligners this week. Well, I have since received and email stating that they were creating my smile (using my impressions), thermoforming my aligners (where they mold the plastic around my 3D molds), and that they were trimming my aligners for a perfect fit. Since none of these emails directly stated how much longer the creation process would last, I decided to send an email to SDC directly asking if I could have an update on when I can expect to receive my first aligners.

Customer service was very friendly in their response, and I really do appreciate their prompt response every time I have a question, but the rep told me that I can expect my aligners to ship the week of October 31st. That's almost 2 weeks later than they were originally supposed to arrive. I am more than happy to wait for my aligners to be properly made, but I'd rather not be told that they'll be ready in 3 weeks, when they'll actually be ready in 5+. I think it would be best for future customers to know that they're looking at about a month for delivery of their first set of aligners just so they know what to expect.

I'm still happy overall, I like the updates I receive from SDC, but like I said, I think it should be clear that aligners take longer than 3 weeks to produce. After having as many customers as they have, I would think they would have a more realistic timeline of when these aligners can be produced and shipped. I'm sure this causes frustration for many people.

Aligners have shipped!

My aligners have finally shipped! I am so very excited! The initial process takes quite a while, so to know that I'll actually start my treatment this week is an amazing feeling. Unfortunately, the email that told me my aligners have shipped didn't contain a tracking number, so I can't tediously stalk them on their way to my doorstep. Bummer. I emailed customer service and requested a tracking number but haven't heard back yet. I expect I'll have tracking by the end of the day. Anyway, I just wanted to post this update for those of you following to give you a timeline reference. I started this journey September 14th, and my aligners shipped October 26th. If you're even mildly interested in this treatment, I highly recommend starting asap to minimize your waiting time :) My experience so far has been one of the quicker ones since I didn't put off taking my impressions or photos, I literally took each as soon as they were requested, and I was approved the first time around :) I'm very thankful for that. Anyway, that's the latest update.

Tray 1

So my first 3 sets of aligners were delivered yesterday (yay!).

Inside my first shipment was a set of "chewies" aligner seaters, a removal tool, my aligner case (purple! score!), an emery board to file down sharp edges, my first 3 sets of aligners, and the bonus whitening treatment.

First trays: I decided to put them in at bedtime, as I've seen recommended by many other SDC members. The top tray fit beautifully; it snapped in, and was a little hard to take off the first time, but I didn't need the tool to get it out. The bottom fit pretty well *I thought,* but after using the chewie to try and seat it, I realized my right bottom side is loose. I originally thought this was due to a post-SDC impression filling I had done on my back molar (which I contacted SDC about before having it done and they told me it wouldn't be a problem since it was only one small procedure), but after I got a closer look, I realized one of my front teeth on the right side wasn't lined up correctly with the tray. So I contacted SDC through email since it was about 10pm, and haven't heard back yet. After wearing the trays all night, the bottom still looks as though it's not lined up properly, but it's not fitting quite so loose. I don't know if it's starting to seat on my teeth due to suction, or if I'm just being optimistic because I'm bummed I might have to wait for a new set of bottom trays to be created :(

Anyway, so far so good. My teeth don't hurt, but when I take the aligners out to eat, I can definitely already feel a difference. My bite seems to have shifted ever so slightly, so when I bite down, my teeth hit spots they're unfamiliar with. More specifically, my left hind teeth seem to be hitting a different spot than what they're used to, and I checked my treatment plan out again today just to compare the change for tray 1, and those are the teeth that are being moved with this tray. Yes! It's already working; I'm pretty excited! Let's just hope my bottom tray issue gets resolved ASAP to minimize wait time for my treatment plan.

First Bump in the Road *sigh*

I received my first 3 sets of aligners on Friday, October 28th. I was super excited, and I put them in at bedtime. The top fit great, but the bottoms didn't quite seat on the right side. So I waited it out until Sunday, thinking they just needed time to adjust to my teeth and that they'd seat fully by the end of the weekend. Well, they still didn't seat properly by Sunday afternoon, so I checked my treatment plan to see where the nuisance may be, and I realized that my treatment plan has one of my lower teeth shown to be much shorter than it really is, so my aligners are improperly fitted over that tooth. Therefore, there is NO way my aligners are going to fit, unless my tooth magically shrinks to fit the aligner, right?

Well I contacted Smile Direct Club via email over the weekend, then called them on Monday. They told me I probably just hadn't seated my aligner correctly, then asked me to send several photos to look at the aligners and my teeth, so I sent those in immediately. I just received an answer back from them, stating that my photos were observed and everything is fine and I just need to keep using my chewies to seat my aligners and continue with treatment as is.

There is NO way I will be putting those aligners on my bottom teeth since they have a tooth incorrectly formed in my treatment plan. I have expressed my concerns with that to them (just replied to their email). I'll let you know what comes of this situation. Ugh, I don't want to keep dragging out treatment.
Smile Direct Club

5 out of 5 stars Overall rating
5 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
5 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
5 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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