“Six Month Smile” | Cosmetic Brace REVIEW

As the name suggests, the Six Month Smile cosmetic braces are meant to straighten your teeth within 6 months. . . the Six Month Smile cosmetic braces differ to the normal braces due to their design, instead of being silver they are white so it’s less obvious you are wearing braces. My braces were removed in August after 13 months so 6 months isn’t always the case. I am however very happy with my teeth and those months of pain and not being able to eat what I liked was well worth it!

I have always had strong healthy white teeth, however 1 of my canines was not straight compared to my other teeth which is why I decided to take the plunge and to have braces. Here is my story which I hope will help a lot of you who are thinking about having cosmetic braces in your adult life.

Consultation – Not everyone is right for cosmetic braces so a consultation is always required, which I went to in early March 2015. I got to the surgery and had to fill in one of those scary forms about your medical history and sign my life away! Just kidding it was just a form for me to complete and give to the dentist telling her what my problems were and how I wanted my teeth to look which I thought was a great idea as you are instantly in control, they are your teeth after all!

Although I live in Brighton, I decided to see a London dentist called Dr Haj Manku-Barlow, who’s clinic is in Kingston-Upon-Thames. Haj is absolutely lovely and really made me feel at home within the clinic. Haj opened her first clinic in London’s West End specialising in Cosmetic Dentistry and opened Brunswick Dental Rooms in 2006.

Haj asked me several questions about what I wanted and how I wanted my teeth to look! Then she started to actually take a look at my mouth to see what she would hopefully be working with. Instantly she saw the tooth which I hated and said it would be fine to move YIPPEE but she also said I wouldn’t be able to have both the top and bottom arches done together and she would need to see how wide my upper arch opened up before the bottom could be considered. I was fine with this as it’s my top arch which I hated the most so it was all good!

Haj confirmed I was perfect for treatment and ushered me into the admin office where I sat with the receptionist who gave me my schedule of appointments. Schedule in hand I left the surgery excited of the prospect of straight teeth!

Brace Fitting – June 2015 the day my brace was getting fitted! As soon as I stepped into the surgery it suddenly dawned on me what was happening, I was actually going to have lots of metal glued into my mouth for at least 6 months! Before I went into the surgery Haj took a lot of photos of my mouth, in the reception then again when I was in the DREADED DENTIST CHAIR!

Lay back Charlie and just relax . . . . no going back! I was literally only in the chair for about 15 minutes it was so fast, Haj said take a rinse and take a look, I was thinking? Surely it’s not done yet? But yes it was done and I was half a BRACE FACE. I was then taken into the office and given a “DO NOT EAT” list and some survival wax! I left the surgery feeling very odd but pleasantly surprised as there was no pain or discomfort, I just couldn’t close my mouth or speak properly. Later that evening for dinner I had plain rice which I basically just swallowed as I couldn’t yet chew!

The first few days I must say were horrendous and I probably went through 4 packs of pain killers! The pressure on your teeth when talking and chewing was a lot to take in. But after 1 week I must say the pain went down, as my teeth had moved which I was very pleased about. Also the wax they give you literally is SURVIVAL WAX! As your teeth move the wire in your mouth obviously moves too, so depending how it moves the wire can start to protrude out of the bracket and into your cheek which is one of the most irritating and most painful things in the world. But simply rectified with the wax, just take a small amount , roll it into a ball and put on the end of the sharp wire! So simple but SO effective!

In August 2015 my lower arch was also fitted with a brace, so I was now a fully fledged brace face. And over the next year I attended the dentist once a month for my adjustments (new stronger/tighter wires) plus any adjustments Haj needed to make to the direction my teeth were going. There was little discomfort for the rest of my treatment, the adjustments were very minor so the pain was nothing like the first week.

Brace Removal – July 2016 just a few days before my 25th birthday my top brace was removed! So I was extremely happy! And loved the result.

The “De-Bond” process takes around 30-40 minutes and involves the brackets being removed and glue filled off the teeth which in my opinion didn’t hurt at all. The worst part was probably the noise of the drills and files but its all worth it! I had some of my teeth shaped and some bonding on a chipped tooth which was a little uncomfortable but didn’t hurt.

Then in August 2016 my lower brace was also removed! I AM BRACE FREE and it feels absolutely fantastic! I had what is called a “Fixed Retainer” fitted to my top and bottom teeth which is a small metal wire which ensures the main front teeth are always supported and shouldn’t move. I also have plastic removable retainers which I wear at night-time.

Results – I am so happy I decided to have braces, and wish I had done it years ago. Haj and her team in London were absolutely fantastic and the experience was great. It took 12-13 months from beginning to end so double the “6 months” which is advertised but I’m OK with that. Minor issues will only take a few months, but when there is a lot to move around then its understanding its going to take time. Some dentists speed through the treatment to get you out of the door but Haj is a perfectionist and ensured my teeth were ready before we even thought about removing the braces. My teeth are no way the straightest in the world, but they are so much better and I love how much more confident they have made me!

TIPS – 

  1. Take a few pain killers before and after your fitting/adjustments
  2. Avoid coloured food, curry, chilli, paella etc (it will make your brace yellow! – I used to have a curry the night before an adjustment!)
  3. Stick to water and milk (drinking fizzy drinks may stain your teeth and leave bracket marks)
  4. Brush your teeth 30 minutes after eating (not straight away)
  5. Use the TePe inter-dental brushes along with normal teeth brushing routine to ensure your teeth are clean.
  6. Once your brace is removed wear your plastic retainer all day everyday (apart from when eating) for the first month to ensure your teeth have that extra month of retention.
  7. Attend a hygienist appointment with your General Dental Practitioner once your brace is removed for a clean.
  8. Do NOT get lazy when it comes to wearing your retainer! You don’t want your teeth moving back!
  9. If you are unhappy with your teeth after treatment, make sure you tell the dentist! You have paid thousands and if it’s not right you must tell them.
  10. SMILE.SMILE.SMILE

If you have any questions re the 6 Month Smile process, please ask away and I will try my hardest to answer for you!

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