In early December, I had another round of IPR. I am amazed every week at the movement of my teeth! Above is the picture of tray 25 I shared on Instagram a few weeks ago – I start tray 25 next freaking week! Week after next I have my last IPR appointment – from there it’s just periodic check-ins to pick up new trays and make sure I’m tracking properly. As you can see from the picture of 25, above, I still have a ways to go – but if you compare it to my baseline it is already like night and day. Even though my course of treatment involves drastic movement which can involve discomfort, it has been milder than I thought. This has absolutely been worth it to me.
The success of an Invisalign treatment protocol depends heavily on the patient taking the commitment seriously. Part of that commitment is caring for your teeth, trays, and gums. My adherence to stringent oral hygiene Invisalign requires has left my teeth and gums in better shape than they have ever been. Since I’ve been at this for six months now, the healthier habits I’ve cultivated will stay with me and enable me to take better care of my mouth.
Invisalign Oral Hygiene Series
I’ve gone through some trial-and-error to figure out what works best for me. Originally, this was going to be one really long post, but I figured it might be a bit tl;dr. Over the next few weeks I will cover the following oral hygiene product topics:
- Toothbrushes (read below!)
- Aligner Tray Cleaning
- Bonus Items
When you’re in the midst of orthodontic treatment, especially Invisalign, brushing after every meal is not optional. As a result, patients tend to have multiple toothbrushes. Their brush in their home bathroom. At their desk. In their purse. One in the car, maybe. As for me, I’m a two brush gal.
At Home or Travel – Sonicare FlexCare+
After many years of faithful service from my Oral-B Pro 3000 (still recommend it), I got curious and decided to give Sonicare a shot. A girlfriend uses the DiamondClean which is evidently badass and looks amazing.
I didn’t want or need that much luxury in my toothbrush though. Research led me to choose the FlexCare+; it has plenty of nice features, excellent battery life, and gives a great clean when paired with the (100% compatible!) DiamondClean heads.
I bought my FlexCare+ at Costco and got TWO of them for less than the retail price of one. They have the best price on replacement brush heads (for both Oral-B and Sonicare!) I’ve found, too. The set came with a pair of sturdy travel cases as well – so it comes with me during travel (yes, they get through the TSA just fine!). Why compromise when you don’t have to?
On the Run – GUM Foldable
Even though my Flexcare+ travels beautifully, I can’t tote it around in my purse. Instead, I keep one of these foldable toothbrushes in my purse kit. This is hands-down the best folding/travel toothbrush I’ve ever seen. Features:
- Close to a full-size feel when folded out
- Handle feels sturdy and ergonomic
- Small, compact form-factor when folded down
- Handle protects bristles from:
- Getting gross
I find it delivers a clean comparable to any manual toothbrush I’ve used. It is not as good as an electric, but definitely gets the job done.
The Bottom Line
Gratuitous brushing is NOT OPTIONAL when you’re undergoing orthodontic treatment. Since you’ll be brushing a lot, you should have a toothbrush you look forward to using. There are so many out there; the process to find a great one is expensive and tiring when you’re flying blind. I hope these recommendations help whether you’re starting treatment or are just wanting a new toothbrush in your life.