By Andrea Michelle for Broadway Dental

Prepare for your retinas to burn in pain when you check me out at my sixteenth birthday party.

Andrea with braces at 16

Yup, there’s that big 80s perm, a suspicious looking jacket I picked up at a local thrift store that I thought was sooo cool, and a mouthful of braces.

Approaching another birthday a couple of decades later, and not so much has changed.

I still love to bag a thrift store bargain (my shopping tips are here), I still love big curled hair – albeit nowadays I use a curling iron or a do a big barrelled blow dry – and I have braces again. But chances are you can’t really tell, huh?!

White Shirt Invisalign

Over the years, my teeth moved back to their original spots, so I had pretty crooked ‘fangs’ as my brother used to call them. I became kinda self conscious about them, especially when eating. Somehow anything green liked to nestle between them, and sadly not all buddies are game to let you know when you’ve got something stuck in your teeth. Yikes!

I visited Dr Fadi Yassmin at Broadway Dental who told me about Invisalign teeth aligners.

He attached teeny tiny pieces of porcelain to various teeth, gave me a set of clear aligners to replace every two weeks, and strict instructions to wear them about 23 hours a day for best results. While at first I thought he was joking and wondered what the hell I’d got myself into, following his instructions hasn’t been a big deal. I take them out when I’m eating or drinking, and if I’m out with mates, but besides that I’ve just viewed it as part of my “beauty routine”. But one with the bonus of guaranteed results that are going to last.

After wearing them for about six months I whinged to Dr Yassmin that I was getting impatient. So he hooked me up with Acceledent, a little gadget that speeds up the realignment process, effectively halving the time you need to use Invisalign. It’s basically a little vibrating mouthpiece that you use for 20 minutes a day. Sexy it is not. But neither are many of the things we do in the pursuit of beauty, right?

The best thing about Invisalign though is that no one noticed I was wearing them until I pointed them out. Not my kids, not girlfriends, not even my Dad.

Foxy Invisalign

I’m now at the 8 month mark, and reckon I’ll be done at the end of September just in time for this year’s birthday party. Which mercifully – unlike my sixteenth birthday party – won’t be attended by parents as chaperones, and we can now drink vodka freely without having to smuggle it around and sneak it into our soft drinks. Ah those were the days! 😉

Invisalign can cost between $3000-$12000, and Acceledent costs aprox $2000.

Anyone else dare to share a photo of themselves at sixteen?

baby hanger
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  • Wow your smile looks amazing. At 37 I also have found myself on a dental journey but I wasn’t suitable for Invisalign so I went with braces for the second time in my life after lots of teeth movement. I am almost 17 months into my treatment and hopefully they will be off by my next birthday the process has been a little slower than I hoped but I don’t regret the decision to fix my smile. It’s funny that I feel more confident now with braces than I ever did with my crooked teeth. Enjoy your beautiful smile.

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