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Finally on the home straight now. A ‘suck down’ has been ordered for my new teeth so I can wear this at night to make sure my stubborn teeth don’t decide to revert to their old ways. Derek has explained to me that the bottom teeth tend to control the uppers so I have also had some kind of permanent retainer fitted to the inside of my bottom teeth. Whatever happens, these teeth can not move back to their original crowded position. I feel good about this addition which incidentally took about 30 minutes to fit and stays in permanently.

The suck down has arrived and is basically a ‘hardcore’ version of the aligners, which I wear at night. Uppers done, lowers fixed in place. I HAVE FINISHED MY TREATMENT.

Regards Mike


The new trays have arrived and I waste no time getting them in to finish off the treatment. Now 18 months in, I must confess that I do dream of the days when I wasn’t cleaning my aligners and going to bed with a basic tooth clean. However, I am excited about the end result and can see a significant change to my teeth compared to old photos. I am off to see Derek tomorrow to check progress against the simulated video. Something Derek and I do regularly to check where we are in the process. The detail and technology that is involved is amazing.

Regards Mike


I am nearing the end of my Invisalign treatment now. Derek and I have decided that we are going to progress with another 3 months of trays to really achieve the result we are looking for. More impressions are taken, to be sent off to Invisalign HQ. Invisalign offer 3 further complementary adjustments, called refinement. There is no charge. Quite amazing service I think. In a few weeks my new aligners will arrive, and I will continue with the process for a few more months.

Regards Mike

Monday 20th February

Hello, and welcome back to my Invisalign blog. The story so far…

10 months ago I visited Dr Derek van Staden at Christchurch Dental to discuss the Invisalign method of invisible braces. My goal, to get a nice smile and straight teeth.afterapproximately 7 months of wearing the Invisalign aligners, it was decided that the end result, although significant was not quite enough. Derek contacted Invisalign who, along with a specialist, made a few adjustments and asked me to continue on for a while longer, to gain the desired result. This is what they call a refinement.

I am now 6 weeks into my “refinement”. The Invisalign course has become even more technical, as I now only have 2 “steerers” glued onto my teeth. I still do the same routine of eating, then cleaning, with my old friends Evian and Smints, but also occasionally my old friend Kitkat sometimes comes to the party just to say hello. Derek’s wife Luci, told me that you do become quite accustomed to rapid removal of the braces to accommodate the odd treat. As Luci is Invisalign Yoda, I too am the young Skywalker, stealth in removal, quick cuppa/Kitkat,then back in, without so much of a squelch or a pop of the braces. I have noticed the significant movement of the top teeth, the ones which concerned me, but not the bottom ones. Derek (Obi wan kenobi) has assured me that the bottom ones are “passive” so do not need to move at present.

I have noticed in the media recently, an ever increasing amount of celebrities that have had cosmetic dentistry done. Following this Invisalign technique reassures me, that I am able to achieve a nice set of teeth, with my teeth, rather than being made to look like someone, who has had the teeth of a newly born foal, transplanted into their gums. This “look” bemuses me, do you people actually ask for this?

I am back in the surgery next week to collect my new set of trays, a quick pint of Explorer in the Greyhound, then back to the blog. Speak soon.

Monday 3rd October

I have finally reached the end of my initial course of treatment. I visited the surgery today to discuss how things were going with Derek. After 12 sets of aligners and nearly 6 months of brushing and cleaning relentlessly, cold turkey, suffering from lack of snacking, Smints and Evian water by the truckload, and 1 stone 13 pounds lost in weight, 2 inches off the waist, to this point, had we finally reached our goal? I sit in the lounge, avoiding Esquire, trying to spot people I might know in the back of “Suffolk” magazine when the smooth and reassuring tones of Derek greet my ears. I am called up to “the room”…

Derek and his lovely assistant make me feel at home as usual and we discuss the treatment and look at the digital imagery regarding my case. We know where we want to be with the treatment , but are we there yet..? Unfortunately, no we are not. It seems that the last 3 sets of aligners may not have worked their magic quite as effectively as the previous ones. However, Derek did mention that this could happen so now I am entering the ‘free’ refinement process stage, where we can continue alongside Invisalign to achieve the result we want. It works out that I need approximately another 3 months work and a few more sets of aligners.

I can’t wait to get my teeth and smile perfectly. I am booked in next week to see what further treatment I need, will update then.

Regards Mike

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