Your Smile Direct Before and After Review 2019-2020
As I got older, I got a little more pressure from my dentist to correct the crowding. He said that it prevented me from flossing correctly, and it would be very difficult to fill a cavity if one cropped up in the area. But again, the cost was unfathomable to me, even if I was a little self conscious of my open smile.
Then, I discovered Smile Direct Club. Smile Direct Club, or SDC, is a service that creates custom clear aligners for you with the help of their orthodontist consultants, and treats you at home. No office visits needed, your entire treatment is delivered through the mail to your front door. They 3D-print their aligners using cutting edge technology to cut costs for you, making this the most convenient and affordable way to straighten your smile. It’s designed for mild to moderate imperfections, like gaps or slight crowding. It’s also a great choice if you’ve previously had braces, but never wore your retainers and experienced a shift backwards.
COSTSmile Direct Club costs a flat fee of $1850 no matter what your treatment looks like. There is also a monthly payment option of $80 over a 2-year period with a down payment of $250. The impression kit in the beginning is not included in this fee, and costs a separate $95– however, you can get 50% off the evaluation by using my link and entering the code SLASHEDBEAUTY. Also, if they deem you an unfit candidate for the service, they’ll refund you in full for the assessment. After your treatment, retainers will cost you another $99. Considering most Invisalign plans run an average of $5,000-$10,000, this service is a must-try for anyone wanting to perfect their smile.
PROCESSIt starts out with an evaluation, where SDC sends you an impression kit to take molds of your teeth, or you can go into one of their SmileShops located nation-wide. If you decide to take the at-home route, you mail the kit back using the prepaid packaging, and then they come up with your treatment plan. They determined my plan would last 6 months, starting in September 2016. It takes a few weeks for them to process, create and mail you your aligners… about 4-6 weeks on average.
The first time I put my aligners in, the pressure was real. It was bearable, but definitely uncomfortable. It took about a month to get used to it completely and even then, whenever I switched into my next tray, there would be some consistent discomfort for about a day. Also, my early aligners used to come with high edge that were sharp and tended to cut into my gums. I had to use a nail file to dull them down and make them fit. However, by month 3, it wasn’t a problem anymore… I don’t know if I just got used to them or if SDC altered the design.
SDC spreads out the straightening evenly throughout the course of your treatment. This way, you’re not experiencing as much pain or pressure all at once. Even so, I was able to see a big difference within two weeks. It was definitely working, so I stayed diligent.
The aligners are supposed to stay in for 22 hours a day, only being removed for coffee breaks, eating, and brushing your teeth. You can keep them in while drinking water only. They’re pretty unnoticeable unless you’re looking up close, where there is a slight texture on the surface of the aligners. One of the biggest giveaways was the fact that they made me lisp, hardcore. I thought this was something that would go away, and it definitely settled down once I got more used to them but still never went away completely.
RESULTSI was supposed to end my treatment in April, though once I was in my last set of aligners I noticed that my bottom teeth were still slightly overlapping. Luckily, Smile Direct Club offers free refinements– if your teeth aren’t exactly how you want them, or they look different than the treatment plan they delivered in the beginning, they’ll extend the treatment for free to perfect your smile. I was grateful for this, though it took quite a long time to get my set of refinements. They wanted to take another set of impressions to see what still needed to be done, which I had to mail back and let them evaluate. That, plus the time it took them to actually 3D print my refinements, left me on the same pair of aligners for much longer than they’re designed to be worn. My bottom ones ended up cracking and I went 3 weeks without bottom aligners before the refinements came. My teeth definitely had started to move back, so putting on the new pair hurt for a good 24 hours.