Things That No One Tells You About Before Having Invisalign

Things That No One Tells You About Before Having Invisalign, My Personal Nightmare

Consider all possibilities before paying a ton of money for these clear trays.

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For people like me who are terrified of how I will look with braces on their teeth, the road toward Invisalign seems like an obvious one, right?

Invisalign is clear aligner trays that are "invisible" on your teeth, not leaving you with that "brace-face" look. They are known for having shorter treatment time periods than standard braces. Treatment lengths can go anywhere from a few months to years, and I say years, because I am currently going on my fourth year of treatment.

When I first started Invisalign, my main issue was that one of my front teeth was really crooked (some of the teeth on the bottom were a little crooked as well, but that didn't concern me as much). I started Invisalign in December 2014, and my doctor said that my treatment would only take one year--party time! I was excited to not have braces, since I was in my junior year of high school and didn't want to look any weirder than I already did. Oh, but little did I know that this would be one of the most excruciating experiences of my life.

When I went in for my first appointment, I really didn't know what to expect. They had to put this mouthguard with the worst thick, foamy gunk in my mouth to get a mold of my teeth; honestly, that was the worst part. Then, when they sent the information to Invisalign and got my trays back, that's where it got interesting.

The nurse mentioned that I was going to have "attachments" on my teeth. Up until that point, I had never heard the word "attachment" used in a conversation about Invisalign and was naturally curious. Apparently, the number one thing that Invisalign leaves out in all of their marketing and on their website is the use of attachments.

Attachments are small bumps that are placed on your teeth to serve as extra grip for the aligners to correctly move your teeth. So, basically, they are like brace brackets, but, they're not metal and are the same color as your teeth. I had one (or more) on every tooth in my mouth except for my back teeth. The use of attachments make your Invisalign more visible. What's worse is when you don't have your Invisalign trays in, you constantly get asked, "What's all over your teeth?" and told, "You have some food stuck on your teeth."

The daily life of having Invisalign is not as perfect as they paint it out to be. They market the product as "not interrupting your life," which, in my case, is all it has done. When you have Invisalign, you have to wear it for 20-22 hours every day.

Every time you want to eat or drink something, you have to take out your trays & brush your teeth afterwards, which can be a little tedious if you are like me and like to snack and drink coffee throughout the whole day. When you don't wear your trays long enough each day, the trays won't fit your teeth, and your Invisalign treatment will be longer. The true reason why my treatment has taken almost four years instead of one is based solely on the fact that there were times I did not wear my trays enough. (But having inconsistent doctors certainly didn't help either.)

Having Invisalign can be really difficult if it goes on for a long enough time and you are unfortunate enough to have three different doctors, like I did. I had to get four refinements for my teeth, which is when your trays don't fit correctly, or you need to add extra trays onto your plan.

The first doctor I had was perfect and is the best Invisalign doctor in Minnesota (Dr. Fehrestis). After him, I had two other doctors, but the last one was by far the most frustrating. I wouldn't come in for that many appointments in between trays, and, when I would, I wouldn't even get to have my doctor look at how the trays were fitting on my teeth. I would just get my new trays, and come back in four to six weeks.

That's when I started getting inconsistent results, and my trays were starting to not fit my teeth. I went in for what I thought would be my last refinement, but things got complicated. My doctor at this point told me that I wasn't allowed to get another refinement without paying (our plan had all extra refinements covered, no matter how many I needed to get), because I was not wearing my trays enough or using the "Chewies" she gave me. Chewies are these little rubber tubes that you can use to properly set your Invisalign trays onto your teeth, and I didn't have them until this last doctor.

She told me that I had to use them when I would put a new set of trays on originally, but, at this appointment, she informed me that I had to use the Chewies every time I put in my trays. So, a lot of miscommunication was happening, and not having appointments where I would have my doctor actually check on how my teeth were doing turned out to be a big problem.

I am finally back with my first doctor (Dr. Fehrestis), and my Invisalign treatment has been going smoothly. The key to having success with Invisalign is making sure that you wear your trays all the time and have constant check-ins with your doctor to ensure that your trays are sitting correctly. Also, just consider getting braces--you can't forget to wear those, and those sought-after straight teeth will become a reality sooner.

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A list Of 15 Inspiring Words That Mean So Much

A single word can mean a lot.
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Positivity is so important in life. A lot of times we always go to quotes for empowerment but I have realized that just one word can be just as powerful. Here is a list of inspiring words.

1. Worthy

Realizing your self-worth is important. Self-worth can really make or break a persons personality. Always know that you are worthy of respect. And also, never compare yourself to others.

2. Courage

Be courageous in life. Life has so many opportunities so do not be scared to grasp any opportunity that comes your way. You have the ability to do anything you have your heart and mind set to do, even the things that frighten you.

3. Enough

When you are feeling down and feeling that nothing you do is ever good enough, know that you are more than enough. And yes there is always room for improvement but when it comes to my self-worth I always have to remind myself that I am enough.

4. Blessed

Be thankful. A lot of times we forget how blessed we are. We focus so much on stress and the bad things that are going on in our lives that we tend to forget all of the beautiful things we have in life.

5. Focus

Focus on your goals, focus on positive things, and focus on the ones you love. Do not focus on things that will keep you from not reaching your goals and people that do not have good intentions for your life.

6. Laugh

Laughing is one of the best forms of medicine. Life is truly better with laughter.

7. Warrior

Through the good and the bad you are a warrior. Be strong, soldier.

8. Seek

Seek new things. Allow yourself to grow in life. Do not just be stuck.

9. Faith

During the bad times, no matter the circumstances, have faith that everything will be all right.

10. Live

Start living because life is honestly way too short. Live life the way you want to live. Do not let anyone try to control you.

11. Enjoy

Enjoy everything that life has to offer. Enjoy even the littlest of things because, as I said before, life is short. And plus, there is no time to live life with regrets.

12. Believe

Believe in yourself and never stop. Believing in yourself brings so many blessings and opportunities in your life.

13. Serendipity

A lot of times we look for things to fill an empty void that we have. Usually what we are looking for comes when we are not looking at all. Your serendipity will come.

14. Create

Share your ideas with the world. Creativity brings change to your life. However you chose to use your creativity do not be scared to show your intelligence, talent, and passion.

15. Love

The world is already full of so much hate, so love unconditionally with all your heart.

Cover Image Credit: Tanveer Naseer

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The Things I Found At Rock Bottom

It was the darkest, but the dawn did come.

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About 3 months ago, my whole life was uprooted by a breakup.

My ex ended a relationship with me very suddenly that I had the full intention of being in for the rest of my life, and even thought I knew it was a necessary loss, coming down from that high and detoxing our toxic relationship from my system was the hardest thing I have ever been through. There was a day I finished up in class and zoned out and started driving, until I found myself three hours away from home. I didn't eat for days, and I woke up every day having panic attacks when I remembered everything that had happened. The first few weeks were a dark, horrible blur, with pain at levels I would never wish on anyone. On top of that, I was also forced to move an hour away from home and quit a job that I loved as a result of the breakup.

I wasn't just losing a person, I was losing everything that I built my identity up to be. Our relationship was my whole life, and that's why I knew that us breaking up was necessary, but that didn't take away the two and a half years of memories I was left with. He also chose to end it in such a violent and excruciating way — telling me he never loved me, cutting off all contact with me, and basically telling me to kill myself. Sitting in the rubble of all of this, I had never felt so empty and void of happiness before.

But when you're completely shattered and sitting in nothing but rubble, you're presented with a beautiful opportunity — a blank canvas. There are no morning and night routines laid out for you, you don't have the same people texting you as before, you don't have the good morning text that you were used to. You have nothing. Because of these things, your own interests and desires become the default setting you're programmed to operate on, and you get to know yourself in a way that you didn't before.

Here's how I found my way out of the void.

1. Small distractions are so helpful.

.There were a few things that I turned to that were absolutely crucial to me when I was struggling to keep it together: New Girl, playing the game Words With Friends, and journaling (free-writing, and writing in these that I found at Target). Honestly, these things rarely actually made me feel better. However, the value I found in them was creating new habits and filling my life back up with things that didn't involve my heartbreak.

2. You need a support system.

I have always had a hard time trusting people and talking about my feelings. So I thought, naturally, the way to cope with that is to find one person you can trust, and for them to be your ride or die. That's what my ex was for me. When he was gone, I had to learn how to open up to people again, which was extremely foreign and uncomfortable for me. It was an odd feeling to text a friend and say "I'm not okay right now and I need you", and even more uncomfortable when they were nice and supportive back. But all of the dozens of people I leaned on ended up being literally a support system for me- giving me advice, keeping me in check, and telling me all of the things I didn't want to hear, like how pathetic I was acting at some points.

3. You absolutely cannot avoid pain in life.

A quote I found by Jon Kabat-Zinn reads, "You can't stop the waves, but you can learn to swim" and that became a guiding philosophy for me in dealing with pain. As comforting as it would've been for me to tell myself I'll never let anyone hurt me again, or I was never going to be in another relationship again, I instead decided to tell myself that I was never going to let something break me so deeply again, because I would have a stronger foundation of me and a stronger sense of self. So that when the next person left my life, I would be sad, but I wouldn't feel shattered to the core ever again. Life involves constant rejection, constant disappointment, and constant anxiety. You will never escape that. You will hurt so much throughout life. But if you can build yourself to be strong enough, it won't matter.

4. You can empathize with somebody and forgive their actions and still want nothing to do with them- and that's okay.

When my ex and I were together, he messed up and did a lot of things wrong. He would scream at me and tell me he hated me and apologize with so much fear and hurt in his eyes and say, "I'm sorry, sometimes my anxiety causes me to demonize you" and in the moment I wasn't strong enough to say "it's okay, but you're abusive and I need to be away from you". I instead would say, "It's okay, let's not worry about it and just go to bed" and it would keep on happening. I empathized too much with his demons and gave him too much understanding at my own expense. Now I've learned that I can still feel that way about him, but when he reaches out asking for another chance, I can say no. And I don't feel guilty anymore.

5. Your relationship with yourself should be your top priority.

To explain my experience of learning to love myself, it would take pages. Simply put, I started being okay with things just being me, myself, and I. If I had a rough day, I would at first come home wishing I had my ex there to talk to and be there for me. Eventually I started going to Target, picking up a bottle of wine, and taking care of my damn self. I stopped thinking "oh I'd love to do this but I don't have anybody to go with me" and started eating at restaurants alone, going to bars alone, and going on hikes alone. I bought myself jewelry that I wished a guy would buy me. I said yes to every guy that asked me out on a date just to put myself out there. I spontaneously went and got a new tattoo completely by myself. And now that I steady to the core in my own being, anybody in my life is there because they're a complement, not a supplement. This will protect me from ever staying in a relationship again that manages to gut me in the way my previous one did.

A quote that I love from J.K. Rowling reads, "Rock bottom became the solid foundation on which I rebuilt my life", and that is absolutely true of what the past three months have been for me. Day by day, I've pieced together a new identity and healed my soul. I wouldn't have been here if I hadn't hit rock bottom.

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