How I wish Invisalign was a “thing” back in 1986.
I have partnered with Invisalign to share with you, my experience with braces. All experiences and opinions are my own. When I was in 8th grade, I got braces. To be exact, on the day of my 8th grade graduation, I got braces. Don’t feel sorry for me. I actually wanted them. All my friends had them and I could feel my teeth getting tight and starting to cross one another. At 13, I already knew beauty was pain and I knew that if I had to endure a couple years of being called “tin grin” and “trap jaw” by my little brother, it would all be worth it to avoid a lifetime of crooked teeth. So, I asked my parents for braces and I got them.
I wore them and my torturous rubber bands religiously for exactly one year and a half. It was trying. I’ve worn an expander and rubber bands every way possible and all of this happened in my freshman year of high school; the year that my freshman girls gym class shared the gym with the senior football players conditioning as if freshman girls need something else to be self-conscious about. I never smiled. I’m pretty sure some of the guys had bets going because they all seemed to say hi and try to make me smile. But as I am sure you are aware, as any woman who has survived the tween/teen years, there is nothing quite so embarrassing as looking awkward in front of the cutest guy in school especially when you’re wearing braces, have no boobs and your dad still won’t let you shave your legs. I swore I’d never do that to my girls.
Our dentist does an orthodontic assessment when the kids are 6/7. My eldest daughter had traditional braces put on when she was 8. Apparently, braces aren’t just for teenagers these days. She’s 9 and they are off. She only wore them for 6 moths and her teeth look perfect. Unfortunately, it doesn’t seem like much has changed since I wore braces in the 80’s. Yes, they are less obtrusive but you still have those pesky wires and brackets to get your lips and the inside of your jaw pierced on. She went through wax like it was water. Though traditional braces are a lot less noticeable than they once were, you still run the risk of injury especially when playing sports. Have you ever caught a dodge ball with a mouth full of braces? It’s not pretty.
At her final orthodontic appointment, I was told that with some teeth still left to fall out, we may need to do a second round when she is a tween. We’re hoping not but I’ve already decided if we do, we will get my daughter Invisalign Teen. The price is comparable to traditional braces, my insurance still covers the same amount, yet no one ever needs to know she is wearing them because you can’t see them and let’s be honest, speaking from personal experience, no tween girl wants to be seen as “trap jaw”. Bonus, they work just as well as traditional metal braces.
My only worry was that much like my retainers in high school, the Invisalign Teen aligners might end up in the lunchroom garbage can after a rush to get back to class. But, no worries, Invisalign teen knows that kids make mistakes and you get up to six replacement aligners free of charge. I personally think that if you can’t figure out to put your aligner in the case while you eat after six times, you deserve to be charged for it. Here’s hoping we don’t have to do another round of braces with the same child but if we do, I like knowing that Invisalign Teen is an option.
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