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Two years ago, I made a decision to do something that I've wanted to do for a long time now. Finally get my teeth straightened.
See the picture above with the perfect smile? It wasn't always like that. In fact, after four years of wearing braces as a teen, my teeth still weren't straight. Add to that, many years of not wearing my retainer, and well… I had a smile that I didn't love.
It was one of those things that REALLY bothered me, but after all those years of wearing traditional braces, I couldn't see myself going back to wearing those to straighten my smile.
Then I heard about Invisalign treatment.
It was exactly what I was looking for, and I'm so happy to share my treatment story with you all from start to finish.
My total Invisalign treatment time took less than two years from start to finish. This included a couple rounds of refinements. I'll talk more about them later.
To start Invisalign treatment, I visited my local Orthodontist, Kieffer Orthodontics, for a consultation. He answered all of my questions, determined if I was a good candidate for treatment and then we scheduled a time for me to come back and start the process.
At my next appointment, images of my teeth were taken and my Invisalign clear aligners were ordered. One thing that I LOVED was that instead of messy impressions, they used a little camera system called iTero to get a digital scan of where my teeth were. I gag very easily so not having to get impressions was amazing! The iTero scan was so much better, easier, and quicker!
About a month later, the Orthodontists office called me and I went in for my first appointment. I was given my first Invisalign aligners, and a couple weeks later I went back for attachments. Attachments go on your teeth and enhance your treatment. They are clear and virtually invisible like the aligners (aka trays).
At that appointment, I was given a number of Invisalign aligners so that I could change them on my own. This was very important to me because we travel often and there is no way I would be able to go to the Orthodontist's office every time I needed to have the next part of my treatment started.
I averaged about two months between visits to the office, and each time I went in the orthodontist made sure that my treatment was progressing well and gave me my next aligners. Visits took just about 15 minutes each, which fit nicely with our lifestyle. My daughter, Ashley, was also receiving treatment at the same time, so it was perfect for me to get treatment as I would be there anyway.
At the end of my treatment, my orthodontist and I evaluated if we were happy with the final look and we decided a few times to make some extra refinements. Refinements are pretty common, and I've noticed that often times my refinements were done for things I couldn't even see, but my orthodontist wanted my smile to be perfect. I'm so happy we did them because my smile looks perfect now! Refinements are just revisions to the original treatment plan.
During my refinements, I was able to try the new Invisalign treatment that is 50% faster than it was before. When I started, I changed my trays every two weeks, but now they can be changed every week! Having had both braces and Invisalign clear aligners, the number one question that I am asked is how they compare in results and pain wise. Pain wise, I found Invisalign aligners to be a lot more comfortable. I wouldn't call the treatment painful at all. The first few weeks it is a different feeling because I wasn't used to having aligners in my mouth. My teeth were moving so it was uncomfortable right when I changed the aligner, but it was definitely not painful like braces were in my teens.As far as my final results- I am thrilled and so much happier than I was with braces, which never really straightened out my lower teeth like they should have… even after almost 4 years of wearing them!