*This post was written in partnership with Annapolis Orthodontics. All opinions are my own.
Today, I am sharing my Invisalign journey with you. I just completed it a couple of months ago and I couldn’t be more thrilled with the results. For me, there is more to this story than just perfectly straight teeth. It has given me the confidence I have never had before.
The truth is, I grew up with bad teeth. It is something I have ALWAYS been conscious about and I always hated the way my teeth looked. My mother did everything she could in the way of prevention and care and thank God she did, or I would be toothless right now. I was not blessed with strong enamel and growing up in Europe, there was no fluoride in the water, and fluoride treatments are not done over there. Long story short, I have had cavities all of my life from a very young age and many crowns as well.
A few years back, my very kind and gentle dentist, who has helped me work towards fearless dental visits ( I still get laughing gas when I have work done), recommended my younger son get braces and sent us to Dr. Julie Langguth at Annapolis Orthodontics. Meeting her and her kind staff has been a blessing in so many ways. My son loved going to them and now has perfectly straight and beautiful teeth. Whenever we had an issue, which was not very often, the staff was always so kind and accomodating and made the whole process super simple. Here is a picture of my son after his treatments.
About halfway through his process, Dr. Langguth asked if I would be interested in Invisalign and offered me a complimentary consultation. During this process, her kind staff scanned my teeth and Dr. Langguth discussed with me the process and was even able to show me what my teeth would look like afterward, via a rendering. It was so cool! This is also when we discussed the cost of the treatment and payment options. Luckily, our insurance covered quite a bit of the treatment and I went ahead with their monthly payment plan. I scheduled my initial visit for after my trays had come in. This typically takes about 4-6 weeks. I had 48 trays. for my first set. I honestly had a hard time finding a picture where I show my teeth. This is the best I could do. Here are my teeth before Invisalign:
The overall process was fairly simple and straightforward. During my initial visit, they placed the attachments on my teeth and taught me how to take the trays in and out, with instructions to replace the trays weekly. After that, I would go in every 6-8 weeks to check on my progress and make any necessary adjustments. Overall, wearing the aligners was a pretty easy adjustment, once I got used to taking the trays in and out, which took me a couple of days. I actually enjoyed my visits to Annapolis Orthodontics. Everyone is so nice there and Dr. Langguth and I would talk about trips we wanted to take and our mutual penchant for interior design. I will miss our little chats.
There were a few simple rules to ensure that the treatment went as quickly and as smoothly as possible:
No eating while the trays are in
Only drink water with the trays are in
Take them out to eat
Brush and floss after each meal before putting the trays back in
You should wear your trays 22 hours a day
MY EXPERIENCE WITH INVISALIGN
The whole thing really didn’t bother me and it actually had the pleasant side effect of not shoving food mindlessly into my mouth. I really had to decide, whether it was worth the hassle of taking out the trays every time, and quite often, I decided it wasn’t. I am not a big soda drinker, so I had no issue with drinking only water. Except for at night, when I enjoyed my wine and that was worth it 😉 My biggest issue with the whole thing was my lisp when I was talking to people. I was assured quite often that it was very minor, but it was still something I felt conscious about.
This is what a normal day would look like during my Invisalign treatment. In the morning, I would take out the trays and plop them in a glass of water with a tablet of denture cleaner. I would drink my coffee, brush my teeth and then brush my trays before putting them back in.
I would break my fast around noon and eat my lunch, followed by a cup of tea (thanks to my British mom) and a treat of some kind. Brush and floss. Put trays back in.
Dinner time, the trays came back out, I ate my dinner, enjoyed a glass of wine after, and then brushed my teeth and popped my trays back in.
MY BEST TIPS
I do have a few tips to make the whole process a bit easier:
Replace your trays at night. The most adjustment comes during the first few hours of a new tray and it is easier just to sleep through that part. My teeth never really hurt that bad. There were only a couple of days I remember my mouth being sore. Overall, not bad at all.
Floss, floss, floss. Good oral hygiene is crucial, especially for someone like me, who already has weak teeth. I didn’t want any more cavities or my teeth to stain any more than they needed, so I brushed and flossed religiously. I have this Waterpik toothbrush and flossing combo and I absolutely love it.
Carry floss and gum with you at all times. If you can’t brush your teeth, floss with a flossing stick, swish some drinking water around your mouth, and pop a piece of sugar-free gum for a few minutes to get rid of any food stuck in your teeth.
Wear a sheer gloss. You can do whatever you want, but personally, I just felt more comfortable with a sheer gloss on my lips than a bright lipstick. I felt that it drew attention to my aligners, so I focused on my eye makeup instead and kept my lips super simple.
If you are having dinner with friends, or a night out, don’t stress so much about wearing them and putting them back in immediately after you eat. Enjoy your evening and put them back in when you are done.
Here are some of my favorite products I used during my Invisalign treatments:
THE FINAL STRETCH
After my first set of aligners was done, I got a second set of refinement trays. I won’t lie, I was a bit upset when I received another 22 trays. But honestly, it flew by. The day my attachments came off was such a great day! I loved how my teeth looked and I couldn’t stop smiling. They felt so smooth and pretty. I left with a bleaching kit and 2 retainers to wear at night. It is crucial to wear them every night, or your teeth will shift back.
In the end, I was ready to be done and stop talking with a lisp, but it was so worth it in more ways than one. Now, I love to smile and show off my teeth and I can’t thank Dr. Langguth enough for encouraging me to do it. Here is my smile now:
If you are interested in Invisalign and are local, go visit Dr. Langguth at Annapolis Orthodontics for a complimentary, no-obligation consultation. If you decide the process is for you, you can mention my blog, The Beauty Blotter, to receive a complimentary bleaching kit, worth $250, after you complete your Invisalign treatment. Get ready for your best smile, and personally, I can’t stop smiling!