Friday, April 10, 2009

End of week four

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Wednesday...I switched to tray #2 tonight. Wow! The new trays felt very tight...my first trays felt tight at first also... only this time my bottom teeth are real sensitive. I did put the new trays in before bed with some Tylenol. I keep these trays in for three weeks.

Thursday...bottom teeth are very sensitive..not unbareable. When I take the bottom tray out I checked my tray to see if there were any teeth in the tray (ha, ha). I am assuming movement is in the bottom tray. I didn't eat much between meals today because I don't want to take that darn bottom tray out.

Friday...my bottom teeth are a little less sensitive today. Still hurts when I take the tray out and when I put the tray back in. It doesn't bother me when the trays are in...only when I take the trays out. It too shall pass. It is less sensitive each day.

Saturday/Sunday...my bottom teeth are sensitive when I take the trays out...still feels like I am pulling teeth...obvious movement is taking place. No pain, just sensitivity.

One tray down...sixteen to go!

End of Week Three

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

This past week was an easy week. No aches or pains. Invisaligns popped in and out very easily. I will begin tray #2 this evening. Not sure what to expect except I know the new trays will feel very tight.

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

End of Week Two

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

This has been an uneventful week with my Invisaligns...no dry mouth, no lisping, no headaches.The headache that I had last week was due to a sinus infection, which is a relief. I thought maybe it was from the Invisaligns.

I have become a pro at putting in the trays and taking them out. I have one more week with these trays. Next Wednesday I will be starting tray #2. I am curious as to how much, if any, my teeth have shifted. No one has noticed them...yet. When I get the bands on I am sure the bands will show...but...that won't be until mid May.

Sunday, March 22, 2009

End of Week One

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

It has been one week since I started wearing my Invisalign trays. I have had a bad cold and sinus this past week but decided not to postpone the starting of my trays.

Wednesday...I put my trays on before I went to bed. I seem to be having trouble with my bottom tray...I can't get it aligned in my mouth without taking them in and out several times...it takes me at least three-four tries before they fit in. Top trays just snap right in.

Thursday...I began the dry mouth...drank alot of water then I seemed to dribble out the side of my mouth when I talked. I do have a headache but am attributing the headache to my cold. My back molar was sensitive and my tongue was sore. It appears my tongue was rubbing on a ruff edge of the bottom tray so I filed the edge smooth. Oh, and no one at work noticed my Invisaligns.....yah!

Friday...I am learning to ignore the trays in my mouth. Still have dry mouth but not as bad and still having trouble putting in the bottom tray.

Saturday...my dry mouth has disappeared but I still have a headache...I am hoping it is not from the Invisalign. By Saturday evening I finally figured out what I was doing wrong with my fitting my bottom tray to my teeth. I was trying to fit the tray to the back molars first instead of lining the tray up with my front bottom teeth. Now I line the tray to my front bottom teeth and the tray just snapped in.

Sunday...the trays are beginning to feel normal. I noticed I do pronouonce some of my words more distinctly. I don't have any type of a lisp unless I talk too fast. My headache seems to be subsidding...must have been the cold.

The first week of my Invisaligns has gone so fast with little problems. I am going to clean the trays twice a week with a solution I purchased from the orthodontics. Otherwise, I clean the trays with my electric toothbrush and a little bit of toothpaste. I don't even need to look into a mirror when I am putting my trays in my mouth. (I think I am in the "honeymoon" phase.)

My next update will be in two weeks when I switch trays...on to trays #2.

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Third Appointment

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Today is the day I start my Invisalign journey. In the past six weeks, while waiting for the trays to arrive, I did go to the dentist and had my teeth clean...start fresh.

After I checked in, I went back to meet with Brenda. She showed me my first trays (a series of clear aligners that are custom-made for your teeth) and explained how to put the trays in my mouth and how to take them out. Brenda held the mirror and I proceeded to put in my top trays...snap not a problem. The bottom trays were a bit harder...my bottom teeth are not aligned. It took a couple times of putting in and taking out of the bottom tray before I could fit the tray on my bottom teeth (quite laughing Julie!), but I finally got the tray on my bottom teeth. Not a problem! This appointment was 45 minutes.

Brenda then explained how to clean the trays and how often. I will need to soak the trays in a solution to keep them clean and shinny. She gave me some tablets (I purchased a box of 90 tablets) which I will put one tablet in water and soak the trays for 15 minutes twice a week. I also will be softly brushing the trays with a toothbrush each time I remove them from my mouth. I think people who have Invisaligns have the cleanest teeth because they are ALWAYS brushing and ALWAYS flossing.

I will have a total of 17 trays and will take only three sets of trays home with me. I wear the first set of trays for three weeks, the second set of trays for three weeks, and the third set of trays for four weeks. I will then see the doctor in 10 weeks (May 21). I am to wear the trays 20-22 hours a day. When I switch my trays I will make sure I put in the next set of trays at night and probably take some Tylenol... I am no spring chicken.

Brenda also explained I will have six attachments and showed me a video of where the attachments will be placed (this will be done at the 10 week appointment).

Attachments are small tooth-colored dots of dental bonding material that are bonded to selected surfaces of selected teeth. The idea is that the placement of the attachments provides an anchor point on teeth around which an Invisalign aligner can firmly grasp. This allows the aligner to direct its forces to the tooth more effectively than it would otherwise be able to do.

This is an example of the attachments...they are the two little dots on the side of the right two teeth.


This is the web address if you would like further information regarding attachments... http://www.animated-teeth.com/dental-braces/a-invisalign-attachments.htm

Brenda played a video for me showing how my teeth will change and where the attachments will be placed. The picture below shows the attachments in red...the actual attachments are the same color as your teeth. I am not sure where and how those rubber bands are going to fit...guess I will find out at my next appointment.


This is the video that Brenda showed me of my teeth and how they will progress throughout the treatment. She also had a video that show my teeth from the side and you can really see how the overbite will corrected.

video

I met with the orthodontist and once again, he shaved the sides of my front top and bottom teeth. I then made my next appointment...ten weeks.

Now I am on my own...I put in the top trays with no problem...but those darn bottom trays take more effort and moving around (I can hear Julie chuckling). My journey with Invisaligns has begun.


Second Consultation

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

It has been 3 months since I have met with the orthodontist. During this time I have had dental work completed...I replaced three crowns.

Today is the day I make my commitment to Invisalign. I have about 2-1/2 hours ahead of me this morning. First on the agenda was the diagnostics...taking the pictures. (I can hear you chuckling Julie.)

View of the right side...note overbite


View of the left side...note overbite

View of the inside top teeth...

View of the inside bottom teeth...

Side view...you can really see the overbite...

After the diagnostics I met with the orthodontist. He looked at my pictures and again discussed my treatment plan. I was informed that I would need to use rubber bands for most of my treatment. Rubber bands will help the "overjet" (overbite). Not sure how the rubber bands will work but I am sure I will find out. I was told treatment will be about 18 months...let's see, hmmmmm, that means I will be 59-1/2 years old when I am done with treatment. Oh well! Time will go fast???

My next step was to meet with the Finance Coordinator to discuss the financial options and/or make payment. That meeting took a total of ten minutes...she also showed me pictures of how my mouth would look with rubber bands connected to the Invisaligns.

My next step was to meet the Chairside Assistant...Brenda. I was so happy to see that I knew Brenda...made me feel a bit more comfortable. While waiting for the doctor, sitting in the chair, I looked around and saw all the "little children" waiting to see the orthodontist...if they only new.

The doctor shaved the sides of my front top and bottom teeth...it is called interproximal reduction. Interproximal reduction (also termed "tooth stripping" or "interdental reduction") refers to a procedure where a dentist trims away a portion of the thickness a tooth's enamel in that region where (in normal alignment) the tooth touches against the sides of its neighboring teeth. Teeth reduction is done now in place of pulling teeth to add space between the teeth.

Here is some information to the procedure...A dentist can perform interproximal reduction by hand (using flexible diamond-coated strips that are worked back and forth between your teeth) or else using a dental drill. The method that they utilize will probably be selected according to how much stripping is required. If just a small amount is needed (.3mm or less) the by-hand method is usually chosen because it gives the dentist greater control over the amount of enamel that is removed. For larger amounts of reduction, a dentist will usually use a dental drill to perform the stripping.

With which ever method the dentist does choose, during the reduction process they will intermittently fit a small thickness gauge of known width into the gap they are creating so to measure it. Once they have widened the gap to an appropriate size, the amount of reduction that has been performed on each tooth will be documented in your dental chart. Any future stripping that is performed will also be documented so no tooth has too much enamel removed.

Here is a picture of what the little tool looks and and how it is done...it is a little silver strip and feels like sand paper...procedure is painless!


This is the web address if you would like further information regarding interproximal reduction... http://www.animated-teeth.com/dental-braces/a-interproximal-reduction-stripping.htm

The last part of my appointment was the dreaded cast of my teeth. The technician put a greenish jell on a tray that the top teeth fit in...wait 3 minutes...not bad. Again she put the greenish jell on a tray that the bottom teeth fit in...wait 3 minutes...didn't set properly...redo. And again she put the greenish jell on a tray that the bottom teeth fit in...wait 3 minutes...done! Actually, this wasn't bad at all.

My next appointment will be in six weeks at this time I will be fitted with my Invisalign trays.

Update on Julie...Julie found out that she will be completing her treatment in May...earlier than expected. She began treatment in August of 2008 and will complete treatment in May 2009...10 months. Her teeth look so nice!

Background

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Background...I have decided, at age 58, to have my teeth straightened. Today was my first appointment with the orthodontist. I have paid for braces for Jennifer once and twice for Julie.

I have to thank Julie in helping me make this decision. Last August Julie began her Invisalign treatment and over the past months I have seen such an improvement in her teeth. So, I decided it was my turn.

I did some research and wanted an orthodontist that had a "Premier Provider Elite" rating. (A "Premier Provider Elite" has achieved an extraordinary level of Invisalign case experience.)

This is the web address for Invisalign if you would like further information... http://www.invisalign.com/WhatIs/Pages/HowMade.aspx

My initial appointment was in November 2008. I met with the orthodontist for about 20 minutes. At that meeting he explained how Invisalign works and checked my teeth. We discussed my overbite and he explained that Invisalign will correct most of my overbite and of course, straighten my my top and bottom teeth. We also discussed cost and payment options.

My next appointment is February 11, 2009. At that appointment I will meet with the technician regarding the diagnostics, the doctor regarding the treatment plan, of course the technician who will be taking the dreaded impressions, and payment will be discussed.

When I told my Julie I was interested in Invisaligns she chuckled and chuckled (knowing what I probably will be going through). Jennifer thought it was a great idea!