I promise I’ll get pictures up, but not tonight. Soon, though. Hopefully even before this blog a) gets taken down because I haven’t paid for the subscription or b) goes into full disc golf mode because WORLDS IS IN TWO WEEKS!
Anyway, I’ve now had braces for two months. I remember looking at my mouth a few days before I went in to have the wires tightened and strengthened and thinking “my teeth look NO different. The ortho is going to look at it and say ‘well this is pointless'”. Well, I was wrong. He only looked in my mouth for a second before he said “It looks GREAT”. From the front-on perspective, there isn’t much change. But then I started rooting around in my mouth with my tongue and realized my top front four teeth are much more aligned than they had been (there used to be a pretty big overhang there, now it’s almost flush). What’s more, the biggest thing the braces are supposed to be doing right now is to correct the outward splay of my teeth; to make them hang more perpendicular. And it’s also doing that. So it’s not doing much aligning (particularly on the bottom) in terms of left/right, but my teeth are definitely on the right track.
I also learned a few things in this trip. 1) It isn’t 100% that I will have to have 8 teeth extracted. I mean, it’s still likely that I’ll have to have them all out at once, which I’m NOT looking forward to. But it’s not a certainty, which is something. It’s possible the braces might shift enough stuff around to eliminate the need to extract all the teeth (or even some of them). Right now the plan is to have all four wisdoms removed as well as my four inner bicuspids (the ones closer to the front). The fact that I might be able to get away with less, even if it’s not a great chance, is nice. They should know more in about 3 months. I have an appointment set for early Sept for more wire tightening and then again in mid October where I think they’ll really take an assessment of the mouth and form a true gameplan.
So how’s the actual ordeal going? Well, I’ve hardly had to take any ibuprofin for the actual earlygoing. The first day or two I had braces on I used it, and one day after I had the wire tightening. The actual changing out of the wire was the most painful part of the process so far, and that’s because each bracket that holds the wire had to be individually unsnapped and re-snapped with a new wire in. Worse yet, she had to do it twice on my top when she misread the instructions (or rather the previous ortho assistant had put mis-steps in there). Either way, that sucked but it was very temporary pain.
I keep trying to think of the big picture. I remember when Ash was in labor they kept saying “pain with a purpose”. It’s a little mantra that makes the discomfort and occasional pain of what you’re going through seem relative to what you’re trying to accomplish. I keep thinking of how awesome it will be to breathe (and look) in 3 years, so I’ll deal with having to eat lousy soups and chew most of my meals with the very back left side of my mouth. Actually, that sort of dietary stuff is very temporary – it’s usually only a few days after a tightening that I have to go back to soft foods. I guess I’m preparing myself for after the surgery, where I won’t be eating solid foods like meats for 6 months to a year. A few days here never hurt nobody.
So yeah, so far so good. I’m doing reasonably well on the upkeep of my teeth (worse that I should be doing, but better than I’ve ever done at dental hygiene in my life). So that’s something.
Oh, and did I mention, WORLDS in two weeks?