If you’re thinking about straightening your teeth at home, you’ll need to take your dental impressions at home. To get started as soon as possible, follow these tips to take good, clear imprints of your teeth, and love your smile more.
Before taking impressions of your teeth at home, know that we'll be making 3D molds of your teeth, and making using that model to make aligners that should fit firm and snug around your teeth. Since the aligners will be moving your teeth to be straight, they'll be applying pressure to the bottom of your teeth, which will need your gum line imprint.
Your teeth should be comfortably placed in the middle of the tray, and NOT rub up against the edges of the tray which will give a bad impression. To check the fit, place the tray inside your mouth without any putty in it. The tray shouldn’t touch or pinch the outer edges of your teeth. If you need a different tray size, let us know right away. Don’t make your impressions and we'll send you better fitting trays!
We use VPS putty which hardens quickly, so mix the putty as fast and as much as possible until it's one solid colour, without any streaks of the original putty colours. If you don’t mix it thoroughly, the putty won’t capture your impressions.
Line up your teeth over the centre of the tray before you bite down. It helps to look in a mirror so you can make sure the tray handle is positioned at the centre of your smile.
Press the tray deep enough so the putty can fully capture your gum line. Once your teeth sink into the putty, press it once (only once, we don't want double bite marks) and firmly all the way through until you feel your teeth come in light contact with the bottom of the tray. You'll feel the putty coming up out of the tray, oozing over your teeth and reaching up to your gums.
If done properly, the putty comes out of the back and over the sides of the tray as you bite down. You should feel it over your gums at the back of your mouth. For your upper teeth, put your lip over the tray, and press above your gums (for the upper tray) so the putty gets an imprint of your gums. The same for your low tray where you place your lower lip over the front, and then press all the way around.
Once your tray is fully seated—you feel the putty on your gums and your teeth have come in light contact with the bottom of the tray—don’t move or adjust the tray until it’s time to remove it. If you wiggle the tray, your 3D molds will look to have squiggly teeth, etc. Remember, the impression should fit around your teeth very snug since your aligners will be snug as well.
After 2 minutes and 30 seconds have passed, remove your tray in an 'up and down' rocking motion. Apply pressure so that it loosens slowly, and it'll pop off by itself.
If you have any questions about taking impressions of your at home, go on our chat box online at www.newsmilelife.ca. We're excited to get you started!