Monday, March 13, 2017

MY SMILE DIRECY CLUB JOURNEY - MONTH 1, WEEKS 3 + 4

March 13, 2017: (Week 3, Day 1) So I switched to month 1, weeks 3 & 4 trays last night. With every tray switch I get a little nervous thinking they're going to be really tight and like always so far, I end up a little disappointed. My bottom tray definitely fits very tight though, I just want to point that out. I had A LOT of trouble getting it out this morning, and I haven't experienced that yet so far. But what really disappointed me was the top tray! (of course lol) It's still not tight at all! But I have to say, I noticed that after I put the top tray in and bit down on the chewies, it did start to feel a little tight, it was weird. It felt especially tight on the canine and premolar teeth, so I'm guessing those are the teeth moving this tray? It's going to be weird wearing these for the next 2 weeks because I've been used to switching every week! OH and on my bottom tray on the back left molar, there's like an extra piece of plastic hanging off, it's weird. I'm scared to cut or file it off because I don't want to mess with anything, but it hasn't bothered my yet so far so I'm just going to keep it for now.

March 15, 2017: (Week 3, Day 3) My bottom tray is still very tight and actually pretty painful to take out. I feel like I'm digging my nails into my gums to try and remove it and it actually hurts. I'm also starting to notice my teeth feeling sore/sensitive while I eat and my back molars especially are extra sore. I also received my 3D treatment plan the other day and I'm a little concerned about how much my bottom front teeth are being pushed forward. I'll try and insert a clip of my plan but I'm hoping the movement in my bottom teeth are not as extreme as what the video shows. And that little piece of plastic hanging off that I mentioned before, it started cutting into the side of my cheek. So I just cut a tiny piece off and filed it and it's fine now. Just thought I'd mention that lol.

March 21, 2017: (Week 4, Day 2) Everything has been the same and I've had no new issues the past week, that's why I haven't updated. My back molars still feel sensitive, especially when I eat. I honestly haven't noticed any visible movement in my teeth, but I'll take a progress pic at the end of month 1.


XOXO,
Alix

Monday, March 6, 2017

MY SMILE DIRECT CLUB JOURNEY - MONTH 1, WEEK 2

March 6, 2017: (Week 2, Day 1) So yesterday I finally invested in one of those power nail files and it helped A LOT. (this is the one I bought, I found it at my local Harmon's and it's less than $20! Kiss Power File To Go)  It helped file in the hard to reach places and definitely made the aligners fit more comfortably. I also joined the Smile Direct Club Members Facebook page and it was so helpful to find answers to questions I haven't been able to find from google/YouTube.

So onto the week 2 aligners. I switched them last night before bed because I start all my new trays Sunday night. I was a little anxious because I knew these aligners were going to fit pretty tight because the last 2 days of my first week trays, the top was starting to feel very loose, so my teeth knew it was time to change. (Plus I never felt like my first week aligners ever felt very tight to begin with)

So anyway! I put my week 2 aligners in and...... the top one is so loose! It isn't falling off my teeth but I can move it up and down pretty easily. I'm really bummed because I was hoping it would be tight because I'm most anxious about my top 4 front teeth moving! Ugh lol. But my bottom tray definitely fits very tight. Not painfully, but like a good kind of tight. And definitely tighter than the first week bottom trays fit. So I guess my bottom teeth are the ones moving first? Idk. I posted in the Facebook page because I wasn't sure if I was just being paranoid but people have been reassuring me that this is normal. I guess I just have to be patient, and for anyone who knows me, I am the furthest thing from that lol. OH! And as far as the gum/mouth/tongue soreness, it has gotten SO much better. I really didn't believe it ever would, to be honest. Now that I've mastered how to file, everything is so much better and more comfortable. So if you're struggling with that right now like I was, please believe that it does get better, you just have to push through the first week and your mouth just has to adjust to everything!


March 7, 2017: (Week 2, Day 2) My top and bottom jawline really started to hurt last night into all day today, and I noticed that the outer edges of the aligners started rubbing my gums. I always had a problem with the inner edges and now it's the outer edges. Go figure. And then my back molars (both top and bottom) started bothering me all day today for the first time. So I'm wondering if that means something (good) is going on back there! My top aligner is still loose but only in the front. It fits tighter towards the back of my mouth, so I'm almost positive that means things are starting to move back there. *fingers crossed* Anyway, I received an e-mail from SDC last night saying my next set of trays (I'm assuming month 2) is shipped and on it's way! (tracking says it'll be delivered on Thursday, 2 days from now) I'm relieved to have them early and ready to go when I need them because I've read so many horror stories in the Facebook group about people's treatments falling weeks behind because of delays in shipments.

March 8, 2017: (Week 2, Day 3) Today was the first day that my aligners didn't bother me at all! I'm so happy that my mouth has finally adjusted to them! All it took was 10 days! lol. I'm still a little concerned about my top being loose, but hopefully my week 3's will fit better.

March 10, 2017: (Week 2, Day 5) Everything has been the same, that's why I skipped an update yesterday. But I noticed yesterday and today that my front upper gum line is SUPER dry and it's very annoying lol. I know that a lot of people have noted that the aligners dry your mouth out a lot but I never experienced that at all until yesterday. I constantly am taking water and swishing it around my mouth but it dries up again within seconds! Grrrrr lol. Oh and I also received my month 2 aligners in the mail today! :-D


XOXO,
Alix

Sunday, March 5, 2017

MY SMILE DIRECT CLUB JOURNEY - MONTH 1, WEEK 1

Hey guys! So I decided to blog about my journey with my Smile Direct Club aligners. I've read tons of blogs and YouTube videos of other people's experiences with it, so I thought I'd put my two cents in and share my journey. At the bottom of this post I am going to include my "timeline" to show you an idea of the time frames of everything from ordering my impression kit to receiving my first set of aligners. Along with my daily entries I kept of each day during the first week. Hope you guys enjoy, and check back for more updates!






February 26, 2017: (Sunday night) Aligners went in perfectly fine, they felt a little snug, but zero pain.

February 27, 2017: (Week 1, Day 1) Had no problem getting them in and out, gums seemed to get progressively more sore through out the day. Was a little weird getting used to the eating situation, so this day I didn't really eat much. It's going to be weird not being able to drink coffee in the morning or snack through out the day.

February 28, 2017: (Week 1, Day 2) The bottom tray is EXTREMELY sore and uncomfortable and actually hurts. I woke up at 5am in so much pain that I had to take the bottom trays out until I woke up at 8am. I have tons of cuts and sores all through out my inner and outer bottom gum line. It hurts so bad! :( The cuts on my inner gum line go all the way back and it hurts to swallow. Also horrible canker sores on my tongue. I tried filing the aligners down a little but it didn't really work. I went to the store and bought some orajel that will hopefully subside the pain. The top is a little sore but not nearly as bad as the bottom. I read that there would be some discomfort and soreness with the gums but I didn't imagine it would be like this. I'm told it will heal up in a few days once my mouth gets used to the aligners, but the discomfort alone almost made me want to quit the first day.

March 1, 2017: (Week 1, Day 3) Last night I lined a little wax on the back edge of the bottom aligner that hangs and is rubbing and cutting up my tongue. That definitely helped me a lot and helped me to sleep more comfortably through the night. But the cut on my bottom front gum line is so bad that I literally have to take breaks through out the day and remove the bottom aligner. I don't see how this is going to heal if there is constantly something rubbing against it. I'm wondering if I can cut the aligner a little bit so it isn't always rubbing on the same spot, but I don't want to compromise the fit of the aligner. I also want to add that I've had absolutely no problem eating, my teeth themselves don't hurt even the slightest bit. I even ate corn on the cob for dinner tonite and have no problem at all!

March 2, 2017: (Week 1, Day 4) Woke up with a huge irritated cut on my lower from gum line and did not wear my lower tray to work today. It was just too painful. The cut seems to just be getting worse and I don't see how it will heal is the plastic is constantly rubbing on it, so I decided to give it a break for today. I hope that doesn't affect anything too much. I left the top trays in though. Other than that, everything was perfectly fine. I'm going to try and see if I can cut the front bottom aligner a little so hopefully it won't rub against that one spot anymore.

March 3, 2017: (Week 1, Day 5) So I figured out why the cut won't go away on my bottom front gum line. Since my bottom teeth are not aligned, there is a piece of plastic from the aligner that literally hangs a little off my gum line, where my lip is constantly rubbing it. And I don't think that will obviously get solved until my teeth straighten out and there isn't that space where a piece is hanging off from.

Sooo with that being said, last night I took a pair of tiny cuticle scissors and very slightly trimmed off a little of the plastic on the bottom and it helped A LOT. It didn't help the situation entirely because there's still some plastic hanging and rubbing on my lip, but it did help lessen the pain a lot. Also, on the inner part of the bottom aligner there is more plastic that literally just hangs there and has caused tons of cuts and sores underneath and on the sides of my tongue and it's making me absolutely miserable! :( So I also trimmed a little there but I was afraid to trim too much because I don't want to mess with my aligners too much because I'm not sure if I should even be doing this on my own?

As far as the pain today, it has definitely gotten better but it's still there. As far as eating, all week I've just taken them out when I first wake up, had breakfast, put them back in all day at work, and then took t hem out around 6-7pm to eat dinner and put them back in until the morning. I'm getting anxious to start my second trays this Sunday because I haven't felt any pain in my teeth, so I feel like my teeth haven't started moving yet. I know it's only the first week and I need to be patient but it's hard! Lol. I also hope that I get used to each new set of trays a lot quicker than this because the last 5 days have been brutal. And I don't know if I can handle that the first 5 days of each new tray.

March 4, 2017: (Week 1, Day 6) So today has pretty much been the same. My bottom front gum line is still cut up and I had to remove my bottom aligner for a few hours at work today because it was really bothering me. I also noticed earlier that my top aligner feels like it's starting to loosen up a little bit. I hope that just means that I'm ready for my next trays and not that I messed with anything when I trimmed them the other night.




XOXO,
Alix



Timeline of events before treatment

  • January 1, 2017: ordered impressions kit
  • January 10, 2017: received impressions kit
  • January 11, 2017: mailed out impressions
  • January 14, 2017: they received my impressions
  • January 17, 2017: they e-mailed me to let me know they received my impressions and that it would take 3-5 business days to review them and get back to me.
  • January 24, 2017: they e-mailed me to tell me that my impressions were not done correctly and that I would have to order another impression kit for $50 and redo them. So instead of doing that, I called and made an appointment to go into their office location in NYC for 1/30.
  • January 30, 2017: went to their NYC office and had a digital scan done and teeth whitening session. (they even gave my boyfriend a free whitening session too!) I had an amazing experience there and the people were great. The woman there told me that I would get an e-mail in about 10 days telling me whether I was a candidate or not. And if I am, another 4 weeks after that to receive my first trays.
  • January 31, 2017: received an e-mail saying I was approved and they are working on my treatment and I will receive an e-mail with my treatment plan in the next 7-10 days.
  • February 1, 2017: received an e-mail of the plan for my treatment (super fast!) along with payment info. I was kind of bummed that I didn't get the 3D treatment plan that shows the process and each step of your treatment like I saw so many other people get. All I got was a before and after 2D picture (photo above) of my teeth. When I e-mailed and asked if I could see my 3D treatment plan I was told that I have a "new advanced treatment" and that my plan doesn't have this. Not quite sure what that means but ok.....
  • February 3, 2017: Paid the initial $250 for my first set of aligners to be made and sent out.
  • February 17, 2017: received an e-mail saying my aligners were shipped and would arrive on Tuesday February 21st! I was shocked at how fast that was! Literally 2 weeks!
  • February 21, 2017: RECEIVED MY ALIGNERS!! Not going to start till Sunday because I work Tues-Sat and I want to start when I'm off from work and allow myself time to get used to them.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Pretty pouts with fillers, injectors & plumpers

A lot of people ask me about the lip injections I get, why I do/did it, the pain factor, the best kind to get is, etc. So I'm going to talk about my experience and as much as I personally know overall about the whole thing.


This is the short and simple story as to why I even entertained the idea. I work in an office building and there's a dermatology, cosmetic & laser surgery center in our building and over the years I've become very friendly with the doctors, nurses and the estheticians who work there. About 3 years ago I was offered to do a study on a new product called "Restylane." (I don't think it was FDA approved at the time as a lip filler, but it's been used as a line and wrinkle filler in the face for years.) I honestly never even thought about getting lip injections before, because my natural lips are actually pretty full to be honest.

But before I get into all that, here's a little background information on everything. Lip injections, in general, give you a more sensuous and fuller mouth, more pronounced lips or just a soft subtle pout. Also, like in my case (we'll get to that later lol) correct the overall structure, and even out your lips. They're typically done in two steps. You either want to only alter the "pout" to acheieve the desired shape of the lip, or the volume, where the injections are done slightly more inward to give you the desired amount of fullness. Some people opt for one or the other while others go the whole nine yards. I'm more of a "go hard or go home" kind of girl, so clearly we know the route I chose lol.




Today the most common types people use are "dermal fillers" which are also used in the face. (More commonly known as "Botox" even though Botox is actually the BRAND, not the actual act of injecting the face. Which a lot of people don't know) Anyway, there are tons of different types but you want to be cautious and know exactly what is being injected into your face. First you want a filler that contains a substance called "hyaluronic acid" which is a natural substance we already have in our bodies. That also explains why the results only last a certain period of time, because it eventually dissolves. There are permanent alternatives such as implants and fat injections, but the risks are higher and the results vary. So even though the upkeep is most costly in the long run, it's safer and the better way to go.


side note: how amazing are Lana's lips?!

So I decided what the heck. Restylane is generally used for reshaping and volumizing. I had no idea at the time about any of this stuff. The study was on Restylane so that's what they used on me, I didn't have a choice. So I went and did it the first day, and I'm not even exaggerating when I say it was one of the most painful experiences I've ever endured. Right up there with a Brazilian wax! And I have a pretty high pain tolerance, I think at least. This was no joke lol. The doctor who gave me the injections is a very well known doctor who's been featured in Cosmo and a bunch of other magazines numerous times. http://www.cosmopolitan.com/hairstyles-beauty/skin-care-makeup/

Since Restylane doesn't have any sort of Novocaine in it, they injected me about 2-3 times in each side of both lips with Novocaine. Then once my lips were pretty numb they injected me 4-5 times on the left and right side of my top and bottom lip. (I still felt it) The worst part was when after they injected the product, they have to smush it all around your lips to even it out. Ow!!!! It hurt like a bitch! For lack of a better phrase haha. I couldn't talk, drink or eat anything the entire day and the swelling went down after a few days. After about a week my lips were fine and I was happy with the results. I had to keep a daily "journal" on my results. And then I went back 6 months later for a little more. Overall, I was happy with how they came out, the downside was that I felt like it didn't last that long at all. Maybe a month or 2. I knew it wasn't permanent, but I was told like 6 months. Or maybe I was just in denial haha.


About a year later I decided I wanted to do it again, because I felt like my lips were uneven lol. So in March of 2011 I went back and this time I used Juvéderm. A-maze-ing! I had an esthetician do the injections and I anticipated the same pain I felt last time. And they weren't giving me Novocaine! I honestly barely felt A THING. Obviously I felt a little pinching but it was not NEARLY anything close to what I felt the first two times I did it. I don't know if it was the product, or that maybe the woman who did it was a little more gentle with me, but it was a great experience. I had swelling, but I could still talk perfectly fine. Drinking was still hard, even with a straw, but I managed lol. And I felt like the Juvéderm lasted for MONTHS- even a year later I still noticed. I don't have any pictures from the first time I did it in 2009, but I do from the time I did last year.






Literally right after, March 2011

This is about a month later around April 2011
3 months later in July and still looking plump! :-D

These were around December 2011/January 2012 not quite sure exactly

Around May/June 2012. A little over a year later!

Even when I went back last week to get more, they told me I still had a little left in there. (it gradually fades over time, it's not permanent) So it'd been exactly a year and a half since I had last gone and I went for a little touch up. And I finally discovered why I felt like my lips were uneven. Because apparently when I smile, (when I do haha) I smile slightly to the left side of my face, I was told. 5 days later and the swelling has almost gone completely down, I still feel a little in my bottom lip.


I know this looks scary haha but this was immediately after lol. And it's really close up, they really weren't THAT big 8/31/12

These were taken like an hour later! 8/31/12

Later that night :-) 8/31/12


So the question is......
 or?

And from my experience definitely the Juvéderm. The experience was less painful and all around better. And I definitely felt like it lasted a lot longer!

Also, if you want fuller lips and you can't get past the idea of a needle shooting through your lip lol, obviously there are alternatives. I was never really into the lip plumping glosses because I could literally put on Aquaphor or regular chapstick and it'd make my lips look bigger. The only one that I've ever tried was "Lip Venom" by DuWop. I got it at Sephora years ago, I'm sure you still can.



I've also heard of a product called the "Lip Pump." It's like this suction looking thing that you hold up to your lips and evidently it's supposed to do the trick! Lol. I've never personally tried it but I've heard reviews that it does work, and it's even been featured on the Rachael Ray show, The View and QVC!




Progress update...

Left: I believe was sometime in Nov 2013 & Right: almost 7 months later! (from the initial day) 3/18/13






May 2013


XOXO
Alix