Tuesday, 2 June 2009

Braces update - 1 week

So, as mentioned before, I did get my braces fitted last week. The fitting itself was ok and lasted less than one hour (lots of lip gloss before, as my mouth stayed propped open for that length of time). My ortho "glued" the squares to each tooth (except for the 2nd molars i.e. very last teeth, right at the back of the mouth), then got me to choose the colour of the ligatures (the tiny elastic band that go around each bracket), but I didn't feel brave enough for bright colours (not yet, anyway), so chose light gray (to match the metallic colour of the braces.). The ortho told me she wouldn't tighten the braces too much, so I'd get used to them for a whille, and the first adjustment would be booked for 4 weeks later, when things would really start to move. And that was it! I was given some instructions on hygiene and what not to eat, etc. and I was on my way.

Of course it was strange to have my mouth full of strange objects and to speak (my lips kept getting caught in the braces!), but I was ok. I felt a bit of pressure on my teeth, but they didn't hurt.

I got home and when looking at my new dental bling, Mr Y didn't look shocked... good start. We both spent ages looking at every detail of the new "devices" and him mocking me for my slight lisp. He copied every word I said that sounded like the way my little brother (nearly 2 years old) would say (i.e. "peeaj", instead of "please", etc)...

Then we had some lunch, and as the first eating experience in my new found metal status, it was very strange... food getting stuck all over the place (in my mouth, of course!) and me feeling like I had to learn to chew again (all those years of chewing experience vanished!). But at, least I managed two fried eggs, some soft bread and ice-cream. So far, so good...

Later on in the day, I started to feel pain... It started in certain teeth, then spread around the rest of my mouth. A constant ache from the pressure of the braces on the teeth (took some ibuprofen)... the wires poking into my cheek (at the back of my mouth), which I hadn't felt at the ortho's (put on some dental wax given by ortho)... Eating became harder as I couldn't bite into anything (front teeth ached), nor could I chew properly (if I chewed too hard the front teeth banged together, and that hurt!)... So, I gave up on anything solid and move on to a soft(er) diet, consisting of soups (or "shoups", as I would pronounce), pasta, yogurts, and that sort of thing.

And this continued for a few days, then started improving gradually. Today, I feel no pain (most of the time), and I'm eating better. But, if the ortho didn't "tighten the braces too much" and I was in that much pain, I can't imagine how it'll be after the first adjustment! On the plus side, I think pain means movement of the teeth, and I've already started to notice some slight differences... Yay! I'll wait another week or so then post some photos from when I first had the braces fitted and 2 weeks after, as the differences might be more noticeable.

In addition to the changes in my eating habits, I also had to step up my mouth cleaning routine. I've put together a little kit, to keep in my bag, as I must clean my teeth more often, especially after meals.

It contains:
- travel toothbrush (must find a better one, as the one I currently have is like those ones they give you in long haul flights and not only it doesn't clean very well, but also it doesn't look like it's going to last that long)
- travel size toothpaste tube
- travel size mouthwash bottle
- interdental brushes (to clean around the braces, where the toothbrush won't reach)
- dental wax (for the bits that poke into cheeks and lips)

This is great for use when I'm at work or out and about, and it doesn't take up much space in my increasingly fuller bag.

Speaking of work, going to the office in braces wasn't as weird as I expected. I had previously mentioned to some of my colleagues about them, so I guess it wasn't much of a surprise. And nobody has commented about them(not yet anyway). I was a bit self conscious in the first couple of days, but now I'm fine. It's something I've wanted to do for a very long time, and the important thing is that I'm finally doing it!

Anyway, sorry for the extra-long post today. At least you're up to date braces-wise, and further posts should be shorter (I think...)

Ok, so 1 year and 51 weeks to go (more or less)!

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