I TRIED SMILEDIRECTCLUB CLEAR ALIGNERS, HERE’S WHAT I THOUGHT
We recently had the pleasure of interviewing David Cran, Vice President UK, Ireland & Iberia at SmileDirectClub for our MenswearStyle podcast show. This was in May and I was given the opportunity to try out their teeth straightening service for myself, and now that I’ve finished and had time to reflect, here’s my verdict.
I actually had braces back when I was in school which resulted in a very nice straight set of teeth. But in my mid-twenties, along came those pointless wisdom teeth to ruin the party. Although, I can count myself lucky that there was enough room for those useless teeth to come through without any problems. Some friends I know weren’t so lucky and had to have them removed at the hospital. However, their arrival resulted in movement of my front teeth. Over the years they’ve been pushed to one side and became a little crooked.
This didn’t bother me too much, but they seem to get a little worse and worse as each year goes by. At the age of 36 should I really be getting braces again? It’s silly to care what other people think but that really was my only concern. Since clear aligners are barely visible and the fact that I was working from home during the Covid-19 pandemic (other than my wife and kids, I only see the post man and courier), I decided to give it a go.
There are two options when you begin the SmileDirectClub journey, and that is to either visit a SmileShop for a 3D scan of your teeth or to do it yourself via an impression kit. I choose the latter to avoid being in contact with the Coronavirus and doing it myself was simple enough. You basically get a putty to press onto your teeth in a tray which then sets hard, and you mail it back. You also take some pictures of your teeth to compliment this and soon enough you can log in on their website to see your 3D impression. This also shows you how your teeth look now and how they will look on completion.
You’ll then need to wait a few weeks for your clear aligners to be made and mailed to you. You receive them all at once and each one is in a bag with the date of when you should use them. When I put the first set in, my mouth really didn’t like it. I ended up with soar areas on the inner mouth and on my tongue in various places. There’s a file that comes in the box which is for filing down the aligners to combat this. After a couple of days, it no longer felt soar and I was happily underway on my journey. I recommend always using the file on each new set of aligners to make them more comfortable. If you feel, there’s an area irritating your mouth just take them back out and file that area before putting them back in.
I also sometimes found that when it was time for the next set, the new aligners were too tight, and I couldn’t get them in at all. If that happens, just wear the older set for another day or two and try again. It just means your teeth haven’t moved enough yet. I also had aligners that were rather loose a few days before the next set were due and so I started early. There’s no problem in doing that because it’s a 4-6 month journey and a few days off schedule won’t make a difference.
I found that my teeth were cleaner than they’ve ever been, and I also lost weight too. This is because each time you take them out for a snack or a drink other than water, you’ll need to brush your teeth and floss before returning them. I found I was brushing and flossing my teeth 5 times a day. I then eventually lost weight because it became tedious to do all that for the sake of a small snack like a packet of crisps and a biscuit. So, I stopped snacking in between meals completely which was great for my waistline.
Overall, I was impressed with how these clear aligners work. My top and bottom sets of teeth have all moved quite significantly with no pain at all. You’ll almost feel sceptical that its working until you finish the process and see the results. You’ll also forget you’re wearing them for 22 hours a day after a few weeks. At first, they’ll be on your mind because its new and unfamiliar and you’ll talk with a lisp. My teeth are now 90% straight, which isn't perfect, but I’m happy with them. I also wear the recommended retainers whilst I sleep to maintain my new smile. This is because teeth will always have a tendency to shift back and need a little encouragement to stay put.
SmileDirectClub is a lot cheaper than going down the traditional route and much more convenient too. I didn’t have to go see a dentist throughout my 4-month journey at all, but they were on hand if I needed them. With my busy schedule that was perfect for me.