My Invisalign journey is over (so hard to believe!) and I wanted to share a recap of the entire process with you guys so that everything is in one place, start to finish! I’m recapping it all below, as well as giving my tips for a seamless Invisalign experience, and sharing some answers to FAQ that I’ve received about the whole process! My teeth look absolutely fantastic and I’m so pleased with the ending result. It’s absolutely crazy to me how much they shifted in just 5-6 months time and my smile is entirely changed. Invisalign was something I’d considered for awhile, but admittedly was a little nervous to do because I didn’t want to regret changing the smile I was born with/had – and I can say I absolutely do not! It’s totally worth it and if you’re considering hopping into the process, I’d say go for it!
I did my Invisalign through Dr. Mariya Malin at Wilton Smiles in Wilton, Connecticut!
MY INVISALIGN TIPS
GOING INTO INVISALIGN – I highly recommend looking into the office that you plan to do your Invisalign at. Invisalign will encompass more than just the actual process (as I found out!) so you want to be sure that your office is experienced in bonding teeth (a process I was not familiar with!), adding in wires if needed, retainers, and beyond. Remember, this is YOUR smile. You need to be 100% happy with it when you leave and are done. If you’re not, don’t be afraid to speak up, share concerns, or extend the process if needed to make even the smallest changes. Dr. Malin is personally doing Invisalign herself so she understood the way the process works and feels from both a dentist and patient perspective. This was something I feel gave her an edge in the service!
BEFORE YOUR FIRST APPT – You’ll have a consultation so will learn about most of the process then, but don’t be afraid to ask a ton of questions. I asked as many questions as I could because I wanted to know what’s going on in a process like this. During your consultation, you’ll also go over a mock up of your teeth and a proposed ‘before/after’ so you can see what will happen to your teeth. Also, I’d suggest having them overview the first appointment with you. It’s invasive in the sense that a lot is happening in your mouth all at once, and sometimes it’s good to be informed. For example, we ‘shaved down’ my bottom row of teeth to allow for movement happening with the trays – I didn’t know this was happening beforehand so when I looked at my teeth after I was slightly horrified, but understood once she explained the process to me and why we did this!
DURING YOUR PROCESS – Be committed to the entire Invisalign process. You need to wear your retainers for 20-22 hours a day, basically anytime you are not eating. If you don’t, your teeth won’t move the correct way and you’ll be inadvertently extending your process. I wore my retainers religiously and took good care of my teeth, brushing and flossing after every meal before putting them back in. Dr. Malin told me I was the best Invisalign client she has had thus far because I followed the ‘rules’ to a T- and it’s true! I sure did because I wanted my teeth to come out perfectly. Generally, you’ll wear one tray for about 8-10 days then switch to the next one. They’ll be pretty tight each time you switch and this is normal because it’s a new placement for your teeth and you’ll be pushing them into a new spot.
A FEW OTHER TIPS
– Have a little ‘go bag’ with essentials: retainer case, travel toothpaste + brush, & floss. Carry this with you at all times when you leave the house so you can take care of your teeth while out and about!
– When you finish one tray, still keep the old one in case it cracks/breaks/you lose it, etc. This didn’t happen to me once but I still kept the previous tray each time I switched as a back up.
– Don’t eat or drink with them, you’re not supposed to and I know some people do. Just don’t! You’ll ruin the trays and it’ll set you back in the entire process.
– Be patient: sometimes you need to adjust during or after the process. It may not all go 100% according to plan and that’s okay! My teeth thankfully moved seamlessly during the entire process and we did not need to alter my trays, but they also continued to move afterwards. I have very strong teeth and we concluded the muscle memory was pulling them back into place! lol Hence, I had to wear my final retainer a little longer and have a wire installed. To me, this was not a big deal because it ensured my teeth would be 100% in the end.
I’m sharing a full ‘flow chart grid’ below, if you will, of my Invisalign journey. Most people would look at my before and assume I did Invisalign to fix my middle space, but we actually addressed quite a few more issues than that. I had a side space that drove me more nuts than the middle one and is why I wanted to do it in the first place! Upon my first consultation with Dr. Malin, she also informed me that structurally the way my teeth were in my bite was causing wear and tear on certain teeth and over time this would be an issue down the road. Adjusting the placements of that was huge! We also took my two side incisors that were turned outward and made them flush with the rest of my smile. Some of these changes are smaller or not visible to everyone else, but they’re things I notice and if you look closely at a before/after, can see! I tried to include some various angles as well so you can see the movement of my teeth over time at the different check in visits we had.
If you have any questions, feel free to shoot me a DM on instagram! I also have some more in depth videos of the entire process saved to a highlight on my instagram page. I hope this was helpful for any of you considering the process!