I recently decided to try something I've been promoting nearly every day, but never considered doing myself (no it isn't flossing!). What do you ask? I committed to going through Invisalign treatment!
Last November, all the docs in my office got 3D scanned with our Itero digital scanner and reviewed our individual Outcome Simulators. This is a tool that Invisalign uses to show a computerized simulation of how much MY actual teeth can move during Invisalign treatment. The experience was eye-opening. Not only could I see my teeth as they were now, but right beside it was the proposed outcome. It inspired me to consider taking the leap and becoming an Invisalign patient. I thought the changes would be minimal, as I didn't have too many things to improve, but it amazed me how profound the differences were. I didn’t realize that so many teeth were slightly rotated and relapsed since orthodontic treatment in high school.
Another reason I wanted treatment was for our hygiene team to see how much I believed in the power of Invisalign. As our front line patient "ambassadors" it is important that they believe in what we're promoting. As we looked over the outcome simulations, the whole team realized that each and every one of us (docs included!) had an issue/problem/concern/worry about our teeth. Now that they see me wearing my Invisalign aligners, and hearing how excited I am about the changes, it is an easier segue-way into a discussion about how Invisalign can benefit my patients without seeming "salesy" during a patient's exam.
As an Invisalign patient, I feel more capable as a clinician to address the concerns that patients have. When my patients tell me how they are bothered by excess saliva and lisping, I can give them tips on how to improve these issues. When they have soreness or difficulty seating or removing a tray, I can tell them what works for me as a real patient, not just the doctor. It is important to truly understand and empathize with what our patients are experiencing. Sharing your own personal story as a patient, makes you not only more relatable but also more trustworthy.
And last, but certainly not least, I have been thrilled with how quickly it is benefiting my smile! My diastema/food trap between #24-25 is closing nicely, my arch is rounding out, and the tooth rotations are correcting. I am totally geeking out over the amazing progress I've experienced!