Oral health is an important part of your overall well-being, but choosing the right dentist isn’t as simple as walking into the closest dental office. Lucky for you, we already did the heavy lifting: 5280 teamed up with topDentists, a company that creates nationwide dentist listings, to locate Colorado’s 598 best dentists. A healthy smile is just the flip of a page away.
Invisalign: Grin and Bare It
Invisalign is setting my teeth—and my confidence—straight.
The date was going well— the food was tasty, the small talk was flowing, the chemistry was there. Until my date cracked a joke. As I burst into laughter, it wasn’t a stray piece of lettuce making an unwelcome appearance that worried me. All I could think was, Does he notice my crooked teeth? I’d passed the awkward braces phase in eighth grade, but my jaw shifted as I grew, and halfway through college one of my permanent retainers (a small wire behind my front teeth) came loose. And then a few of my front teeth shifted. Most of my friends barely even noticed—but I did. Flossing at night, looking at photos of myself, on a date…my teeth were all I could think about. I’m not a particularly self-conscious person—most people who know me well will say I’m not lacking in confidence—but the insecurity kept nagging at me. So I decided to do something about it. I knew I didn’t want braces—been there, done that. And I was embarrassed to admit that I cared about something as superficial as having a “perfect” smile, something that would be made painfully obvious with metal brackets on my teeth. So I looked into Invisalign. Marketed as “clear braces,” Invisalign uses retainers (“trays”) that you wear all the time, except when eating, that very slowly move your teeth into the right place. I have to change out the trays every two weeks for about 11 months. For the first few weeks I was incredibly insecure. I imagined everyone was doing a double take when I smiled, wondering what was on my teeth—and a few people did ask.
A few weeks in, though, I barely noticed them. The trays can be a nuisance to take in and out (having to run to the bathroom, for example, while your friends are being seated at a restaurant), but they’re working. Now when I smile I don’t focus on a perceived flaw; I’ve got all the confidence that should come with a genuine grin. Plus, I have a few dates lined up. —Daliah Singer