Invisalign for Treatment of TMD
Well, I was in for a regular cleaning and I had mentioned that I'd had a little bit of clicking in my jaw. I had been to many dentists before and they kind of just shrug it off, saying it'll come and go. But I've noticed since I'm getting a little bit older that when I wake up in the morning, my jaw would kind of seize up a little bit. It would be hard to flex. So I mentioned it. The doctor asked me a couple of questions, looked my mouth, give me a couple options, like a splint that I could be wearing at night because I grind and... I clench more than grind, so the split would help temporarily, but I would have to use it for the rest of my life. Or he said my teeth looked a little out of alignment and he mentioned Invisalign would be a good candidate. I might be a good candidate for Invisalign.
So I took that home, thought about it a little bit. I'm 40 years old. I have two kids and a wife. I'm not really crazy about... I don't really care about what my teeth look like anymore. I thought that was more of a young person thing to do. But I did a little bit of research and it looked like that was more of a permanent solution, something that might help me later on in life rather than having to worry about wearing a splint every night to keep my teeth from grinding.
It seemed like it was the less instrusive of the two. It's kind of a set it and forget it type thing. You pop it into your mouth and you wear them until your teeth are aligned. I figured that would be it.
I love that they're so unobtrusive, that people don't even notice that you have them in your mouth unless you point them out and say, "Hey, look, I'm trying to get my teeth straightened."
The most challenging thing, I would say, the first couple of months of wearing them there is a little bit of a learning curve. You do tend to speak a little differently, and remembering to have them in all the time, it's a little bit of a challenge. But after that first month you kind of get used to them and you actually feel kind of weird when you don't have them in your mouth. So it wasn't that bad [inaudible 00:02:38].
I'd say 22 hours a day at least. I take them out whenever I eat, brush, clean, put them back in.
There's been a very drastic change in my jaw clicking. It's still there. I'm not going to say it's totally gone. But in the mornings now I don't have that stiffness. I can flex my jaw and open and close very easily. I noticed that not only is the jaw clicking gone, but I think, going back to the splint, you do have to wear the Invisaligns every night, so it's almost like wearing a splint and I think that helps a lot with my sleep because it does keep me from clenching any longer. It's a really nice bonus.
I would say if it's going to benefit you, go for it, especially... Like I said, I thought it was for teenagers. I thought it was for people in college and it really isn't. It helps a lot more than just straightening your teeth. If it's something that you can do that's going to help you for the rest of your life, I'd say go for it.
I would say 95% clinical for me. I never thought about getting braces to fix my teeth. But it has really done wonders for my jaw issue.