Earlier in the year I began an Invisalign treatment with Dr. Greg Valeriano at Valeriano Orthadontics here in Charlotte. To recap, I began to notice a significant shift in my bottom teeth. The crowding that seemingly occurred overnight began to cause me a great deal of pain. So much, that at times it made me nauseous. Knowing how much my parents had invested in corrective dental work, this was something I wanted to resolve while in its very early stages. That’s when I scheduled a consultation with Dr. Valeriano. From the very moment I walked in to the office, I felt like the entire staff would take great care of me. They empathized with my situation, and agreed that things would only worsen if not correctly treated. You can read more, here.
Looking back, I am amazed that the entire process took as little as nine weeks! Straightening my bottom teeth has restored my confidence and completely eliminated the pain I had began to experience. Today I’m sharing my final thoughts and a behind the scenes look of the Invisalign process.
Valeriano Orthadontics takes pride in having the latest technology. Dr. V has this device called the Itero Scanner, which basically takes tons of photos of your mouth and instantly shows an exact replica of your smile on an attached computer screen. Then, with a click of a button, the scan is sent to Invisalign and within a few moments you can see what your teeth will look like after the Invisalign treatment is complete. Below is a simulation showing what my teeth looked like at the very beginning vs. how they were projected to look after treatment.
As I mentioned earlier, the whole process, for me, took about nine weeks. However, total treatment time varies from patient to patient depending on the case. I switched my aligners every seven days over the course of those nine weeks. Dr. Valeriano kept a close check on the progress and made a few adjustments and tweaks to my treatment plan throughout. That’s one of the main reasons I think going to an Invisalign Premier Provider is very important!
I was then provided clear top and bottom retainers. The retainer is something that happens at the end of all Invisalign cases. They are clear, just like the aligners. I’ll wear these every night to ensure that my teeth and bite do not shift.
Below I’ve included a handful of tips I learned along the way for any of you considering Invisalign.
- You’ll want to clean your Invisalign aligners every day so they don’t yellow. Properly cleaning them will also kill any odor-causing bacteria. I found the Retainer Brite Cleaning Tablets to work really great. Simply dissolve the tablets in warm water and leave your aligners in the solution until the water goes from blue to clear.
- Swap out new aligners before bed! This way, those first eight (and most tender) hours in your new aligners are spent while you’re sleeping in bed.
- It is so important to wear your aligners at least 22 hours each day to see results. If not, your teeth may start moving not according to the treatment plan. This could lead to new bone formation in the wrong place, possible creating long term issues.
- Your teeth may need a little shave or Interproximal Reduction. This is a fancy term for making your teeth more slender– and I mean ever-so-slightly more slender. Since I had crowding in my lower teeth, this was necessary to create space for my teeth to move. It sounds terrible, but I promise it does not cause any discomfort. Dr. Valariano has a special tool to accomplish this in just seconds.
- You need an accredited orthodontist to guide you through this process. I would go to see Dr. Valariano and his staff monthly to monitor progress. I realize there are mail-in services like Smile Direct Club, etc., but do realize that they don’t offer an in-person professional watching over the process all along. They are unable to achieve the level of perfection that an actual orthodontist is able to achieve! If you’re local to Charlotte, I can not recommend Valariano Orthodontics enough. They are a Premier Provider in Invisalign and have the latest technology to make the process seamless. They offer free in-office consultations so you can see how your smile would improve with the use of their services.
Thank you so much for following along. If you’re thinking about getting started and have questions, please don’t hesitate to ask myself or the staff at Valeriano Orthadontics.