Crowding and Tilting Plus Acceledent

I've waiting a long time to finally be financially...

I've waiting a long time to finally be financially independent enough to fix my teeth. When I was younger I had braces for a short time, but we didn't have enough money to properly fix everything.

Last summer I started seriously talking with my dentist about the steps I'd need to take to start fixing my smile. Step one was wisdom teeth removal, which I accomplished in October. Shortly after that I met with a recommended orthodontist and really loved the office and his attention to detail. I was scanned with the iTero scanner in December and received my first trays this past Wednesday.

I have about 35 trays in my treatment plan (before refinements). My orthodontist does not have any experience with Acceledent, but brought it up to me as an option because he thought that I would be a good case for him to study the effects. He'll be selling it to me at cost, though I'm not sure when in the process that will be (hopefully soon!). That would bring my treatment down to 35 weeks rather than 70.

I'm really grateful for everyone who has posted about their experiences here! I got a lot of tips that I didn't know would be useful until I put them into action. The things that I've used most:

-Filing the edges of the tray with a nail file to eliminate sharp edges. I did this on one spot on the bottom and one spot on the top. Really, really good tip. I have no mouth discomfort at all and did this before I developed any sores.

-RetainerBrite + Sonic Cleaner. This is honestly the best tip that I read here. Rather than having to spend extra minutes every time I brush my teeth also having to brush my trays, I purchased a sonic cleaner and just pop them in there. In the mornings I put a partial tab of RetainerBrite while the sonic cleaner does its thing. I am really, really happy with this! It saves me probably at least 20 minutes per day if not more.

I've attached a photo of my teeth with the first tray in - didn't realize how difficult it was to get a mouth shot. Not the greatest picture but I want to be able to document my journey especially for when things start changing.

I've done a pretty good job at keeping my trays in, I think - I've been over 22 hours each of the days so far. I have drank light beer with them in + swishing water and brushing when I get a chance. That's my only concession.

This tray already feels like it's fitting really well and I'm still supposed to wear it for another 10 days so I am wondering if it will continue to feel different or if this is about as comfortable as they get. I've gotten pretty good at taking them out quickly and learned to bring hand sanitizer in my kit so that I can take them out even if there is no sink. I'm hoping that even when the trays change they will continue to be able to be taken out with my method - any insight from those farther in the process? Do some tray changes make it harder for the trays to be removed?

I haven't had any ache really, which I found odd - most all reviews here mentioned the first few days being pretty bad. I had one evening where my top molars were a little sore when I was removing the trays, but besides that I've had little to no pain.

Oh, also - 20 attachments on my teeth, no IPR scheduled. My doctor showed me my ClinCheck and I'm very excited. He told me a lot of places don't do attachments on the first day but his motto is get all of the worst parts done right away. Kind of weird to think that if I were somewhere else I wouldn't have the attachments yet - I didn't get the practice of taking trays out without the buttons but maybe that has made it easier for me to adjust.

Biggest change for me so far is not being able to sip on something besides water all day - I work from home and often would have a diet soda or hot chocolate or even flavored water while I work. That is no more. Probably better for me overall but I do miss getting flavor while I work :)

I have another appointment after the second tray (they gave me 2 to start with). I'll update with any major info as it comes... and after I try out tray 2 I may be back as well.

ClinCheck!

Not a lot to report on my trays - I discovered I actually have "Invisalign Teen" and I can't find a bunch of difference between that and full. Not sure why he chose that over the normal but I'm not too concerned. I'm officially over a week in.

Today is a fun day because I got my ClinCheck! I asked for them to e-mail it to me and they sent it right over - after reading here about some offices not wanting to share I was very happy with how easily I was able to get mine.

I am sharing pictures of the start, middle (tray 18) and end (tray 36). I am really excited for even just the middle of the process because my big problem areas are mostly sorted by then - it looks like the end of my treatment is working on my bite and my arch. Still thrilled about those things but if all goes well I will have much visibly straighter teeth by the time I am in a wedding this summer :)

Tray Two!

Well, I just said goodbye to my trusty friend Tray One. I could pop that thing out with one hand (if I needed to). I compared the new to the old trays and was pleasantly surprised at how close they were in color - it's obvious that my new trays are brand new but I'm not that embarrassed with how the first trays ended up.

I can feel that Invisalign hug on my teeth now, for sure. I know that many said to put the new trays in before bed to sleep off the pain... I put them in a little early because I wanted to see if there were any spots I needed to file. So I might start aching a little before I go to sleep - I have Tylenol handy. Not sure I'll need it as I did not with my first trays, but we will see!

My top tray was actually a little hard to get on - My left molars must be shifting a bit this time around, because I had to focus on that area when I was putting the tray in. My bottom was easy like the last tray. I have a lot less attachments down there.

I'm hoping this is one of my last trays that I wear two weeks... I was told they will definitely be ordering some Acceledents and that they should be in soon! I'm crossing my fingers that that means by tray four. I put little numbers on my calendar for what tray I'm on so I can look at my ClinCheck to see where I'll be for major events and if I can at least get the Acceledent by tray 5 (and if everything moves well) I'm going to start really noticing change by the end of March (tray 7 seems to be my tipping point).

Good luck to anyone else changing out a tray today!

Tray 3!

Had my first follow-up appointment today, and I was told my teeth + trays are looking great! Both my first and second trays were fitting really well by switching time and I could definitely tell the difference myself, so I'm glad the ortho thought so as well.

I was given 5 sets of trays, so I have through 7/36. I also ordered Acceledent and am not sure when that might be in, so I am hoping it comes soon so I can move to 7 or 10 day switches.

Not a lot of trouble to report, really... I drink beer with my aligners in but that's it. I've coordinated my life around places with private restrooms from time to time to give myself a break from brushing in a public restroom or using a Wisp.

I put in my third tray a few minutes ago and was reminded how it's a bit of a puzzle to get trays on for the first time. This time I had problems with my lower right teeth - they must be rotating a bit with this tray. They seem to be fitting pretty well besides my right canine. The thing my orthodontist has said to me that stuck with me the most: "It's your job to make your teeth fit the trays." So when I have a bit of a stubborn tooth like this canine that is slightly not fitting it encourages me even more to wear the trays as much as possible and to use my chewies :)

I am probably going to start repeating myself a bit in these updates since I don't go back and reread what I've typed before, so if you're following me my apologies!

Acceledent!

Hoorayyyyy my Acceledent finally came this week! I was told it arrived on Monday and I drive through a bunch of ice on Tuesday to go get it, because I change trays on Tuesdays and wanted to be able to start ASAP.

The meeting was super short. I was given a fairly large box and shown how to use it - not a whole lot to it. The case it comes in is pretty fancy, though! My orthodontist told me I can start changing every 7-10 days, based on how the trays are feeling/fitting. Last visit we went over what a good fitting tray should feel like, so I feel pretty confident that I will be able to make that decision.

I've used the Acceledent for four days now (using it right now, actually). There is a little bit of technique in using it. They say to bite gently, and I'm finding that I'm actually nowhere close to "biting" in the traditional sense. More of a light... clamp? Whatever word I should be using... my teeth aren't touching top/bottom in the mouthguard. In fact, the lighter I hold it in my mouth, the more vibrations I feel.

I don't completely understand the science behind the device (I read some case studies before diving into it, but that's about all I know as far as what's happening to the bone). What I do know is that when I used Acceledent right after changing my tray to a new week it felt like the tray was already fitting mostly perfectly, which took a full week to happen without Acceledent. I've found myself looking forward to Acceledent time - I've been choosing a time of day where I'm going to have my trays in for awhile afterwards because I love the way the trays fit and how my mouth feels after using it. Little mouth massage.

Another perk of Acceledent and the trays fitting easier/faster is that I don't have to battle all of my top attachments nearly as much. For my first three trays it was much more of an ordeal getting my top trays out the first few days of a switch because I have so many attachments on the top. Now my trays are easy to take out by day two, if not day one.

Tray status: changed to tray 4/36 this week. Really pumped that I can change them faster, especially because a lot of cosmetically pleasing changes happen from trays 7-15, which means I'm on track to have great changes by the time I'm in a wedding this summer. So much more exciting counting trays when they change every week!

As far as Invisalign overall... I'm still keeping up with wear time pretty easily. The only thing that has changed in that regard is that in order to keep up with the wear time, sometimes I've been a little more relaxed with when I can brush after a meal or snack when I'm at work or out somewhere where I can't brush right away. Rather than keep my trays out because I can't brush I do my best with what I've got, put the trays back in as soon as I can, and brush when I can. I make sure to not drink soda the times I do this and it seems to be working fine. I obviously much prefer being able to brush, but keeping up my wear time is really important to me so I've made that concession.

Tray 8!

Had a check-up today. Orthodontist says I'm tracking really well and he seems pleased with Acceledent. Popped in tray 8 and was told to keep changing every 7 days as long as the trays are fitting well, which hasn't been a problem at all so far. In fact, last week I waited an extra day to change because I thought the tray was being stubborn but turns out it was actually loose and that's why it felt like it wasn't fitting well!

I've officially missed one day of Acceledent, out of... 29. Not bad. I had a day where work kept me away from home much longer than expected, and then I had dinner plans. Those are excuses but it's the truth - if I had planned better on that day I would have just done it in the morning.

Today I was given trays 8-19, which are the majority of my "exciting trays" as I've dubbed them. My front teeth will be flat straight across the front by the time these trays are done, which is super exciting. I should start seeing that movement with tray 8 actually.

Tray 7 was my most painful tray of them all so far. That tray introduced power ridges to my bottom front teeth to get them to tilt out instead of in, so those teeth ached a good amount for a few days. Still not bad enough that I've had to take pain medication of any sort, though.

I've been pretty good about wearing the trays 22 hours/day as well. As I mentioned before that includes leaving them in for beer as I work at a brewery. But I've been to several dinner parties and other outings with minimal problems. Hardest was probably a beer festival I worked a few weekends ago - two day affair and you have to eat when you can, so I was popping them in and out more often than normal.

Super excited that tray 19 is in my hands, even if it's going to be awhile before I'm in it! Makes it seem more manageable. I pulled up my ClinCheck again today to admire what changes will be happening soon :)

Tray 13

I've seen some major movement lately! Not a lot has changed in the wear/Acceledent/etc realm, but I can definitely tell my teeth are moving. I've attached a picture of Tray 1 vs Tray 13. I feel like one of my teeth isn't tracking very well in this tray and my Acceledent mouthpiece also feels like it's not fitting correctly, so I'm going to give my orthodontist a call tomorrow. Otherwise... onward!

Tooth Not Tracking

SIGHHHHHH

3 weeks ago I noticed my front left canine wasn't tracking. There was space between the bottom of my tooth and the tray. My orthodontist asked me to keep my trays in an extra week (so, two weeks) if the trays weren't fitting well after one. I wanted to do that, but noticed my tray had cracked near that canine, so I moved to the next tray. Last week, after two weeks in that tray, I went in to see my ortho, who wants me to try keeping it in another two weeks to see if the tooth catches up. If it doesn't, we may try to move on without that tooth for awhile to fix some of the other big problems. I really hope we can go that route for awhile to straighten out my right side before doing a mid course correction or whatever may need to happen. So again... sigh.
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