It’s officially almost been an entire week since I got my first Invisalign tray. Can you believe it?! I definitely can, because it’s been a bit of a struggle.
I got the call from my orthodontist last week Thursday, and we made an appointment to get everything fitted and started that Friday.
The First Appointment
My appointment was at 7:40 am, and I was completely nervous. While the appointment was much to early for my liking, there was not one at the office other than the dental assistant, which I was grateful for.
Also, as previously mentioned, the staff at Walnut Central Orthodontics has been incredible from the start and Ronnie was no exception to that. They always answer every email and phone call, so for that I am grateful.
What a lot of people may not realize, is that sometimes Invisalign wearers have to get attachments on their teeth. The attachments are small dots of dental material that are placed on specific teeth to help apply the force of the aligner. I have a total of 14 attachments, (two on some teeth). I knew in advance that I would be getting a certain number of them.
During my appointment, Ronnie, my dental assistant, used some kind of tool to rough up the surface of my tooth where the attachments would be. He then placed a template aligner and used a gel in the attachment spaces. There was then a blue light that Ronnie placed over the aligner which hardens the attachments. While it was uncomfortable to have my mouth forced open while the work was being done, the whole process was pretty painless and easy. I would say in total; the appointment took about thirty minutes.
I have to warn you, the attachments on their own are uncomfortable and foreign. I constantly find myself running my tongue over them, and I can feel them while the aligners are out. They are definitely rough, too.
You might be able to see some attachments on the upper and lower teeth. I have read a few other Invisalign journey’s where people are upset that it’s noticeable they have something on their teeth, but if I’m being honest, no one has really noticed, which is nice.
Once the attachments were in place, it was time to put the aligners in. I have to admit, nothing prepares you for having to pop these aligners in your mouth, (especially with attachments). Luckily, I had no issues putting them in. While they weren’t painful, I could feel them in my mouth. So get ready to constantly run your tongue over the front and back of the aligners.
Now, while this doesn’t apply to everyone, I do have to use rubber bands on a daily basis. My aligners have plastic anchor cutouts on them. I use a rubber band on the left side all day, while the right is only on a nightly basis. The reason I use the rubber bands is because I have a pretty bad overbite, and the bands are supposed to correct them.
Admittedly, the aligners themselves aren’t really a pain, but the rubber bands and attachments are. I cannot tell you how many times I have had the rubber bands snap right inside my mouth. You guys, it’s the worst feeling ever.
Friday was fine until I had to take them out. Taking the aligners out to eat was a complete nightmare. I had a very difficult time pulling them off over the attachments and my whole mouth was in pain. Due to the cutouts for the rubber bands, I have had to use a ton of orthodontic wax, and let me tell you, it’s been an absolute LIFESAVER so that the aligners don’t tear my mouth up. While my orthodontist has given me wax, the GUM brand is my favorite so far.
I bought a cute little bag (at Target,) in which I carry, a toothbrush, tooth paste, a brush for cleaning the aligners, the official Invisalign carrying case, rubber bands, ortho wax, Chapstick, floss, and what feels like a ton more. What they don’t tell you, is that you will have to brush and floss your teeth every single time you take off the aligners, so a carrying case with all of your necessities is much needed.
While I have continued to have a sore mouth and teeth, it has only been five days. Aleve and the wax been my best friend, as it helps with the soreness and pain. I haven’t seen much movement, (but it hasn’t been that long,) so I am nervous and excited to see how the next aligner will fit.
(This is the lifesaving dental wax)
Now typically, you would change your aligners every week, but I am using a device called Acceledent, which is used to speed up your treatment time and helps with pain and discomfort. I chose to use this device as I have 30 aligners, and because I will probably need refinement aligners, this cuts my time from 60 weeks to 30 weeks. I use it twenty minutes a day over the Invisalign, and it’s a vibration/micro pulse that helps accelerate tooth movement. So, instead of changing them bi-weekly, I change the aligners weekly. I will keep you updated on how and if Acceledent really works.
I have learned a lot about Invisalign, my mouth, and all things dental in the last few days and I have some recommendations for you guys. As stated above, it’s so important to carry a bag with all the things you would need to clean your teeth. I brush my teeth at least five times a day!
Secondly, even though I only wear them weekly, I have been using Polident’s denture cleaner every morning to clean them, and its done a wonderful job at keeping them clean, shiny, and smelling good.
If you’re like me and have a small mouth, or produce a lot of saliva, I found the best way of removing the aligners for me, is to use a paper towel. They have been helpful in soaking up my excess saliva, and in gently removing the aligners.
Always brush and clean your aligners with COLD water and clear soap to keep them feeling fresh.
Last but not least, guys, find an Orthodontist you can trust. That was one of the most important things when choosing someone to take care of my teeth. I love the staff at Walnut Central Orthodontics, and if you’re in Dallas, I highly recommend visiting with them!
I will be taking Aleve and changing my aligner Thursday night, so here’s crossing my fingers hoping all will turn out okay!
As you can tell my teeth need quite a bit of movement, bit I am excited to see the major transformation.
Let me know about your Invisalign Journey and if you have any recommendations for pain.
Stay tuned next week to find out about the second aligner.