My Invisalign Journey – Prologue

I’m an Invisalign patient, and thought perhaps I could document the journey. Perhaps someday it might be useful to someone.

I decided, at the age of 50, that my teeth needed to be straightened again.  I wore braces for a very very long time, longer than all of my friends. But all these years later, damn if those stupid teeth weren’t making themselves an annoyance. The shifting had been gradual, not even noticeable. Until I realized that my left front canine tooth sometimes caught my lip, or my lip got “stuck” on it when I was talking. It had just started “kicking forward” to a really unacceptable degree.

My Dad had horribly crooked teeth, seems like that’s another thing I inherited from him.

Anyway, my dentist suggested Invisalign and I looked into it. Not as much of a hassle as braces, sure, expensive, but insurance would cover a portion of it, and well, I’m super cheap about most of the stuff people splurge on, but this thing? This could remove some annoyance from my life. So what the heck, why not?

Dentist took molds – OMG, that was hell. The rubber stuff drips down the back of your throat, you’re certain that you’re dying, and it takes like…well, what I imagine tires taste like. Then, bad news, the molds weren’t exactly right, had to be redone. OK, I’m really suffering for this, but ok. In for a penny, in for a pound.

Hmm, my situation is kind of complex, so the dentist really thinks I should get it done with an Orthodontist, just to be on the safe side.  Oh, ok. I’m willing, interested in fact. But it’s been kind of frustrating so far, so I stall for a few months. Finally make an appointment with the orthodontist.

First appointment was just a look-see and consult. Took pictures, took x-rays, that kind of thing. Then the next appointment was the “can we do this and how much will it cost” appointment.

So, getting invisalign via the Orthodontist is, of course, more expensive.  By the amount that my insurance would cover. Ugh. This just keeps getting worse and worse. Am I that determined? Does it matter that much if my teeth are straight?

Actually, it kind of does. My stupid “crooked and getting worse” teeth bug me. I notice and think about them multiple times a week, and each time I do, I lose a tiny bit of self-esteem and pride. I know it shouldn’t matter, but it does. I notice that the upper middle class and rich folks have straight white teeth. It’s only the poor folks who have crooked teeth. And DAMN, when I’m driving around singing along with the radio, I don’t want to notice that my upper lip is caught on my tooth, that’s just STUPID.

It sounds like my teeth are just awful horrible gross, but they aren’t. They’re not TV star perfect, but they’re not super noticeably crooked, it’s ME that notices all this stuff.

Is it really worth more than $5,000 out of pocket for this?

Yeah, it is.

So I made the appointment – for MORE molds, to start down the path of Invisalign.

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