As I am writing this the time is 11.45am and about an hour ago I left the orthodontist chair once again, having just finished my six month Invisalign checkup. However this wasn’t just a check-up. The nerves and worry had been building up in the pit of my stomach for almost a week now prior to this appointment as I knew exactly what was waiting for me the moment I stepped into that treatment room and sank into the chair. I knew this day had to come as this was going to be a pivotal moment in my Invisalign journey. Sometimes in life we have to experience some troubling times, as these are what become are defining moments, the moments that clear the fog for us to be able to see the light at the end of the tunnel.
I’m hoping now that I have turned a corner in my treatment but whilst sitting in that chair for what felt like a lifetime but in reality was only about 20 mins, I was mentally struggling. Struggling with the intensity and discomfort as my orthodontist filed away at my teeth. The dentist is something I have always feared so the moment they whip out a tool and their assistant quickly slaps a bib over my chest, I know something is about to go down. It didn’t make it any better for me knowing beforehand what was going to happen, this just gave me more time to worry and dwell on it.
Now it’s a little bit crappy that my first set of braces were on and off before my wisdom teeth had a chance to rear their nasty heads, cos when they did they caused my bottom teeth to move towards the middle of my mouth, leading to overlapping in the centre. Whilst I have seen some movement already in my bottom teeth with the Invisalign braces, they were never going to go all the way being their current shape and size. There just isn’t enough room in my mouth for that. So unfortunately for me, the only way to get my teeth to fit into their new space is to shave a couple tenths of a millimetre of their size. A couple of teeth needed 0.2-0.3 of a millimetre off and the more difficult ones needed 0.4-0.5, i.e. the maximum work. Whilst this does’t cause any phyiscal pain at all, it is discomforting. For me especially, I am sensitive to most things, so the vibrations from the file were extremely intense. My dentist was lovely talking me through every step of the way so I knew exactly what was going to happen, so my mentally painful experience was not the result of anything he had done, I am just overly sensitive to sound and naturally scared of any dentist work needed.
Now that this ordeal is over with, in the aftermath my teeth are feeling slightly fragile right now and I can still feel the vibrations from the file running through my head. Kind if like that weird sensation you can sometimes get when you just get off an escalator or out of a lift, you can almost still feel that motion in your head or legs. I am going to need the next couple of hours to shake off the nerves and worry too, then I will be getting on with the rest of my day. One thing that is going to take me longer to get used are the new gaps in between my teeth as a result of the filing. But hopefully my teeth will be on the move again once I carry on through the aligners and these gaps will begin to disappear.
I’m currently on my third and final week of wearing aligner 10/23 with next week seeing the move to a new routine of wearing my top aligner for two weeks and my bottom aligner for three weeks. Lets see how long it takes before that confuses me! Now that this mentally exhausting experience is over with I’m excited for the changes that are due to come. After all, life is all about getting through the bad times are enjoying the good, and I’m that little bit closer to the smile I’ve always wanted.