Once or twice I have watched Extreme makeover, that show where ordinary people undergo transformations through plastic surgery and dental procedures to make themselves look and feel better. Or, at least, that’s the idea. The thing that has always struck me about the whole “reveal” experience on those shows is that very often the thing that makes the most difference is not the breast enlargements, the liposuction or the face lifts, it’s their new teeth. The teeth alone can make someone look ten years younger, wealthier, healthier- like a completely different person.
I think that may be one of the only problems with Invisalign as far as I am concerned. Whilst I love- really love, the ability to remove them at whim, it does mean that I am watching my teeth improve week by week and the ultimate reveal may be something of an anti-climax. I imagine that with metal braces it is much harder to see the results as they happen, and getting them removed must therefore be much more exciting. Of course, it is motivating to see your teeth improving set by set, but you have to go back to your pre– invisalign braces photos to see how bad they really were at the beginning and why you are going through this process.
The thing is, you see, that I am starting to really, really like my teeth- well the top ones at least. They look straighter, they look whiter (thanks to the bleaching), they look, well, like someone else’s teeth to be honest! It is such a thrill to see them like that. I am now getting ridiculously excited about getting my new crown on my upper right incisor(despite how much I am dreading the actual procedure) as that is the only thing marring their new improved look. Nonetheless, I am delighted with how things are proceeding.
I am on set 10/17 for my uppers, which is why I am now seeing such an improvement. (More than halfway through, yay!) My lowers however, are on 10/34 so they still have a long, long way to go. I can already tell though that it is harder to get my fingers between my upper and lower front teeth, so there must be some movement happening, it is just less obvious to the eye. I should point out that although I have a large overbite it is caused by my bottom teeth being too far back, not my top teeth being too far forward. Apparently, the way that I used to suck my thumb (and frankly, I don’t even want to tell you what age I stopped, it is truly, truly shameful!) pressed my bottom teeth back.
Set 10 haven’t been a problem at all. The bottom set of aligners were spectacularly difficult to insert at the first few attempts, in fact, I went and checked the packet very carefully, just to be sure that I hadn’t skipped a set. I hadn’t, they were the correct ones. I think the reason is that they are having to work very hard now as there is such a long way for my bottom teeth to move. You can see how much work they have to still do on my clincheck here.
I think I am back on track compliance wise, bar the odd slip up, and judging by how tight the last set were I need to be.
I have a small issue that I have been discussing with my orthodontist regarding one of my upper molars. I think it is too long, he thinks the one next to it is too short and is attempting to pull it down. Whilst I disagree with him on this one tooth, I am happy to finish this course of treatment and see how it looks. He has promised that if I don’t like it we can adjust it through refinements. On balance given what Invisalign cost and as he has studied orthodontics for 30 plus years and I have only been wearing braces for 4 months, I am prepared to concede to his better judgement on this one. I’ll let you know if he was right!