Another staff member in treatment!

Many of you are used to seeing me at the front desk as the Financial Coordinator. I love greeting you when you arrive for appointments and seeing you every 6 weeks. But now you get to know me in the clinic because….

I got Invisalign!

At 26 years old, I’ve started orthodontic treatment. Growing up my dentist never suggested my parents seek an orthodontic evaluation for me. (That I know of.) My sister had years of treatment. Extractions, expanders, braces. My parents offered but since we didn’t have insurance, I passed. I never thought my teeth were that bad. I knew I had some crowding and my top teeth came down quite far over my bottom teeth. But now that I work in an orthodontic office, I figured it wouldn’t hurt to see what my options are.

I was interested in traditional braces. Had my colors all picked out. But we got an email at the office about Invisalign’s improved treatment for deep bites and thought we’d give it a try. So we took impressions. Ivisalign impressions are different from the traditional impressions. It’s a multi step process and the material is firmer. There’s definitely a lot of pressure and if you’re a sensitive gagger, just try to relax as much as possible. Our staff definitely makes it easy.

Once the doctor approved my treatment plan I was really anxious to get started. My aligners arrived in Augusta while we were working in Waterville. And the weekend happened. And we had no appointments available on Monday. It was a true test of will waiting. I was so excited! But finally the day came and it was my turn to sit in the chair!

My appointment began with micro-etching my teeth so the bonding material would hold. Made sense to me. I used to work with clay and you always had to rough up the surface to bond another piece to it. So the assistant blew fine sand directly onto my teeth. It tastes bad. It feels weird. It stung when it hit my tongue and gets EVERYWHERE. All over my face and clothes, in my ears and nose. Kate was great and kept blowing air on me and keeping it under control. She bonded my attachments next. The cement doesn’t taste great either. I have quite a few, 11 in total. 7 on top and 4 on the bottom. My first aligners fit pretty well. The doctor double checked them then made some room between two teeth. She took a wheel that polished off some of the enamel between my teeth. This will allow movement to correct some of my crowding. It doesn’t hurt. It’s a bit noisy and odd feeling but overall not unpleasant.

The first few days were uncomfortable. I was taking ibuprophen regularly and was not excited to put them back in after eating. But today is day 4 and I woke up without a groan. The ache means they’re working and really, you get used to it and forget about it. I’m doing well keeping them cleaning and putting them in right after I eat and clean my teeth. Of course this is just week one. It’s my first weekend. I really have no choice but to be compliant since I work at an orthodontic office. Do you know how much flack I’d get if I wasn’t? From both my coworkers and patients!

So I hope you enjoy my journey as much as I do. I hope you learn something right along with me. If you have any questions or would like to explore the option of Invisalign or orthodontics, please don’t hesitate to ask!

– RIVA

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