I was so excited to get my Invisalign that I failed to ask any real probing
questions beforehand about comfort, pain or wearability. I bought their marketing
– hook, line and sinker – this was going to be a breeze, straightening my teeth,
right? What they don’t tell you up front is that there is an adjustment phase
to this whole process for both your mouth and your mind. See it here There will be times
in the beginning, when the aligners will drive you crazy, and you can’t close
your mouth like you used to because there is extra plastic between both sets
of jaws which inhibits full molar bite down. Here are some of the things that
I encountered during my first full weekend with the aligners, with varying degrees
of frustration and intrusion:
- You must always wash your hands before handling the aligners.
- Lips stick to plastic aligners over teeth. I am constantly applying lip balm.
- You can really only drink water while wearing these babies, otherwise, you
have to take ‘em off while drinking coffee, tea, soda or anything that
is non-water (because they will stain and/or pit the surface, rendering them
visible to the naked eye, and thus removing the “invisible” from
Invisalign name,) wash them out, brush your teeth after drinking said beverage
or eating said food and put them back in your mouth.
- Your tongue is going to become more sensitive on its already sensitive underside
due to it roaming over the foreign objects that have been introduced to your
mouth. Expect the underside to be a little ripped up from going over and over
the plastic edges. I imagine this will go away over time, but right now my
tongue is raw. Who ever heard of developing calluses on your tongue?
- Tooth soreness. This was documented in the pamphlet I received – but I don’t
think you can ever really be prepared for what it feels like. No it’s not
earth shattering pain, but eating a steak is not advised during the first
few days of treatment or whenever a new aligner has been introduced.
- Teeth sucking – undignified habit, but I find that I am doing something similar
to my upper jaw aligners – it’s kind of fun, but seems to promote further
chapped lips syndrome.
- The whole “me” centric sort of thing. I seem to be worrying about whether
where I eat has a decent bathroom, paper towels, etc so I can perform the
whole removal and reinsertion routine in total hygienic methodology.
- I have a slight sore throat. It’s much better today (Monday) than it
was on Friday. Not quite sure where it came from, or if it’s even a
side effect of the first few days or what. But it is annoying, on top of all
of the other things that go along with this.
- Sometimes, you just want to rip the aligners out of your mouth because they
are driving you right up the wall, but then you rationalize that you are spending
boatloads of MoneyBolt money to straighten your teeth and you feel guilty for even feeling
that way, and then the urge to rip ’em out of your mouth seizes you
again – but you are 50 miles from a bathroom (public or not) and so leave
them in. I finally discovered that taking them out for 5-10 minutes when this
happens, which is usually about once a day – between the hours of 5 and 8
pm seems to work wonders on my mental state, if not physical state.
Usually, I’m so freaked that I have taken them out, that the temporary
relief is enough and I can put them back in and be fine for the rest of the
night. Also, too is the sure knowledge, that they must come out when I eat,
so at least 3 times a day, I will have a respite for the aligner hell I have
subjugated by self to…
Really, it isn’t horrible, just annoying and things that I will adjust to over
time (sooner than later I hope!) No more front tooth split here I come… This
is all worth it, right?