Time for another update! Things have been going great so far, which is why I haven’t updated in a while. I’ve gone through two sets of aligners and am on my third set already!
What I’ve done: I decided to do a little more IPR between a few teeth where the contacts had become a little tighter. Now I did not do very much to begin with (the initial suggested amount was roughly 0.2mm on each side of each tooth, but I decided to gradually take off a little at a time), so I only do as much reduction as I really need to get my teeth in the position that I want. This way, I avoid taking away more tooth structure initially than I need to. Other than that, I’ve just been trying to be diligent about wearing my aligners all the time!
What I’m feeling: I hardly notice them anymore! I’ve gotten so used to them that it’s almost weird to not have them in. My speech has adapted very well and no one even notices I’m wearing anything. I can eat whatever I want without any concerns and when I’m done I just clean my teeth as I normally would. As I mentioned last time, the aligners accumulate a lot of plaque just from being in your mouth, just like your teeth, so they need to be brushed as often as your teeth. Keeping them clean will reduce the amount of plaque on your teeth as well as prevent them from getting dirty looking when you wear them.
Progress: I’m starting to notice my teeth shifting more and making very gradual movements. After the initial day of soreness with a new aligner, I don’t feel any discomfort at all from them. I’m so used to them that I hardly notice them!