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Monday, January 19, 2015

Braces Vs Invisalign

Its been 3 months since i received my aligners. From my visit to Dr Cheng at iDental to collect them, i felt he sincerely cares about making me more beautiful.

The nurses pre-empted me on the discomfort i'll feel in the beginning and advised how to mitigate it. Key rule to slipping on your new aligners without much discomfort is to wear it before bed. In your sleep, your teeth and gum gets accustomed to it. 
I'm not foreign to these plastic things, having worn braces 13 years ago, but in the beginning, i felt the discomfort and i was slurring in my speech. I wasn't drunk, but due to something unusual in the mouth, it takes a week to adapt. There were times i felt like removing them, throwing it to the ground and stomping on them but the Invisalign case taunted me with these text imprinted "Optimal wear 22 hours a day".

I found out that Invisalign wearers were more than i knew. These buggers were keeping secret what's making them more beautiful because its invisible! 

I also found out that many of them were ex-braces patients in our teens! Why did our braces dentists not tell us retainers are for life? This made us our teeth shift over the years and will continue to do so, undoing years of metal teeth pain. 

Having been through both braces and Invisalign, here're my comparisions

1. Time Spent Reduced Drastically
I spent 3 years with metal teeth and it meant 1 visit a month to the dentist to clean, tighten and change the rubber band colours to my fancy. Halloween was purple and black, Christmas was red and green. Retainers have to be worn for a year 24/7 (other than eating), thereafter nightly wear after removing the metal wires. That's 4 years in total having something metal then plastic in my mouth. 

My Invisalign treatment is estimated to be less than a year, visits to the dentist drastically reduced because i could self-serve.

Now that i've relocated overseas, i could take with my all 33 sets of aligners and continue my treatment from a distance.
2. Don't look like an awkward teenager
I remember how self conscious i was when i was wearing braces. Conscious of food stuck in between the wires, it didn't help the wires sometimes cut my gums or the corners of my mouth too. I felt like Ugly Betty. Here in Thailand, i noticed many adults wear braces. I felt so proud i'm one step ahead of them with Invisalign. I don't have to look like an awkward teenager. I can make business presentations and command the room with confidence.
Mr Bean knows my Invisalign secret. 
3. Intimacy with no blood lost
I'm exaggerating here. I didn't make out back when i had braces, but i always had the impression that it wouldn't be comfortable kissing someone with metal teeth. I would know, because it wasn't comfortable feeling the metal against the insides of my lips! Then, there are the risks of cutting your lover. Again, this is me dramatizing braces and i didn't have a personal experience but i have a phobia of that happening!

With Invisalign, you can take it off before making out. Optimal wear for Invisalign is 22 hours though, so keep your make out session short and sweet!
Interested to find out more how you can have this transformation?

Idental is having organizing a free talk to field Q&A. You can get a smile assessment after. 

Date: 27 January 2015 / 26 February 2015
Time: 7pm (Registration starts at 6.45pm)
Venue: Capital Tower, Level 9, FTSE Room

Thursday, January 1, 2015

On New Year's eve, i cycled 54km through Chiangmai's farmer fields, rehabilitation centers and simple lives. 

My year-end post isn't going to summarize 2014's glorifying moments but rather, something i hope that sets the tone for how i want to live for 2015. 

Santhi, my Thai bike guide, struck up a conversation with me while we manuveur around the paddy fields at 10km/hr. 

"What is your life goal?"
"See the world, make a difference?" 

I had to communicate with him in very simple English, a language he self-taught with Youtube over 6 years. 

What i actually meant was my life purpose is to make a difference in the lives around me. Instead of aiming for a Nobel prize, "charity" begins at home and with small actions that makes impact i wouldn't have fathom. Accompanying this life purpose, is the goal to see and feel the world. 

"And you?"
"I want to be ordained (as a monk) when i'm 50."

I am confused. Earlier, he mentioned he wanted to get married at 30 (he's 26). However, with his limited vocabularly, i couldn't clarify. Later, i found out from local colleagues that it is a rite of adulthood to spend days, weeks or months for temporary monkhood, earning merits for parents. 

Meeting all walks of life, random stranger conversations have been most rewarding. It shapes me. 

My greatest achievement before 30 is to have lived in 4 different countries independently. 

Being Singaporean by birth, it has been ingrained in me to study hard, work hard, find a man and marry to get a house. I'm not ashamed to say that was my very naive life goal before i gained enlightened. The more i lived abroad, the more i liked being an international wildchild. Adopting the attitude of an European but retaining an Asian's virtue (and cuisine). 

It takes courage to leave Singapore, an indefinite stay away from family, away from friends. Remove myself from familarity, remove myself from convenience. 

Poverty at my doorstep, cycling past farmers toiling, stepping out of Singapore has been a humbling start. It reminds me constantly how we don't get to choose whom we're born as but we do get to choose how to live life. 

I love Singapore for Singapore, but staying on made me self-centered, impatient and focused on life goals that deep down i doubted. Last year living in Europe gave me a new perspective. Going back to Singapore, i felt the old self creeping back. If i wasn't careful, i would lose that wildchild i prefer to be. 

That wildchild who lives for herself, not for society.  

Stepping out of Singapore, i want to be a better person than yesterday. I want to be myself, as everyone else is taken.

The number 5 has always been my favourite as its representative of my family unit. I found out that its also the number for grace. 2015 will be a year of abundant grace. 

Leaving to find me. 
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