Meet the newest member of the "40's and BRACED" club!!
I arrived at the office about 15 minutes early, and the staff was just walking in. My ortho came over to explain the two different types of Damon brackets I could choose from (self-ligating and non-self-ligating). I chose the non-self-ligating, thinking “I can put bands on them anyway, if I want some extra color.”
After finishing up my paperwork, it was down to business. The assistant was the one who prepped me and put on the brackets and wires, with doc coming in periodically to check. She was absolutely fantastic – funny, reassuring, and told me everything she was going to do before she did it. She really helped calm my nerves. Everything was smooth sailing (even the cheek retractors didn’t bother me too much)… until we got to the spacers. I needed 4 of them, and my teeth were situated so close together, she could only get one on by herself. After a few failed attempts, she called the doc in for some “elbow grease”. Poor guy – even HE had a hard time. I told him “Hey, my teeth shred up Glide floss, so what does that tell you?” He ended up putting them in sort of “halfway”, and told me to come back in next week (the 14th) so he could swap them out for better-fitting ones. The week after that (on the 20th) he’ll remove the spacers, put the bands on and finish bracketing and wiring my teeth. Here are some pics I took after I got home.
As you can see, I’m bracketed and wired on the top from the back, right side all the way around except on my #4 tooth (which isn’t bracketed because it’s going to be yanked… uh, I mean, “extracted”). The bottom is bracketed and wired on all teeth except for the teeth with the spacers around them. The spacers you see “sticking up” were the ones they couldn’t get in properly, but at least they’re somewhat in there. So I have to be careful. (They really feel like food stuck in there!)
Before I left, I had to watch a video about proper brushing, flossing, etc. It was very much geared toward children, but it was cute anyway. As I was getting up to leave, I noticed a sign that had been hanging up behind me the whole time I was in the chair. It said “CONGRATULATIONS” and had my name written underneath. Of course, I had to go back to take a pic. Doc saw me and asked, “Would you like me to take your picture next to the sign?” I think he was half-kidding, because of my age, but he would’ve done if I’d asked him to. I politely declined. Then I remembered my COLORS
! The whole reason I switched to metal in the first place, right?? They didn’t have much of a selection, but they did have a cute pink one I was going to try. However, they said they’d only put them on the front 4 teeth. (I guess they didn’t want to put any more friction on them because I already had the SL brackets.) I decided against it because I thought that would look just weird with the rest of the row being silver metal. Maybe later on down the road.
Didn’t get much in my goody bag: Mouth wash, some wax, travel toothbrush, a floss threader, and a proxy brush. He did prescribe some Prevident toothpaste for me to use. Great - I now have 3 different types of toothpaste to use. I sure am glad I got my DentaKit and extra supplies for at home, because I don't think this place gives out freebies.
After I was done, I walked next door to my dentist’s office and showed off my new look. His wife/the receptionist said I looked like a teenager; that she had had adult braces too, and the 2 years will just fly by, and that I wouldn’t regret a minute of it. She made me practice my “S” sounds, which aren’t too bad, but I do detect a slight lisp. She also told me certain areas to watch out for as far as rubbing was concerned (upper teeth, by the canines).
Well… she was right. It’s now been a little over 3 hours since I got braced. My jaw does feel a bit stiff, but I'm not sure if that's because it was propped open for an hour, or if it's the braces.
Anyone who is apprehensive about getting this done… DON’T BE. I was strangely relaxed in the chair; there was absolutely NO pain, not even when they were forcing the spacers in there. Right now, I have a dull headache, but then again… I always have that anyway, so I can’t attribute it to the braces. I should probably try to go eat something now.