Getting Braces At The Age of 54!

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Dee17
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Location: Ontario, Canada

Getting Braces At The Age of 54!

#1 Post by Dee17 » Sun Sep 09, 2012 3:09 pm

Unlike many of the other people who post on this forum, I did not always want to have braces when I was growing up. In fact, I don't think I EVER wanted to have braces. I never had any problems with my teeth. They were always very straight and nice looking. Suddenly, now at the age of 54,I find myself in the position of needing braces.
It all started with two extractions: a bicuspid on the right side and a premolar on the left. I had developed an abscess on the right side and when my dentist was looking at the tooth, it broke into three pieces and needed to be extracted. The other side was a tooth with a crown that had developed an infection at the root. Again, as he was looking at it, the tooth broke into pieces. Within three days, I had started to develop a space between my two front teeth. On August 20th, the day my first grandchild was born, my dentist told me that the only way to close what had grown, by the time, into a very sizeable space was with braces. Two subsequent consultations with orthodontists confirmed his assessment. So, I have opted to get Damon brackets and will need to be in them for two years. They are going to be put on on October 25th. I think the reason I am going to have to wear them for two years is because in addition to the space between my two front teeth, my front left incisor is very twisted. It actually sticks out quite from from my arch.
I've spent quite a lot of time agonizing over this mostly because I am very concerned about how I am going to look. Consequently, I kept saying to myself that I would wait until February to get them put on so I could save up some money first. But an appointment with a counselor helped me see that there is very little to be gained from procrastinating until then, especially since the space has caused some serious pronunciation problems for me. Saying any word clearly that either starts or ends with an "s" has become impossible because of the resulting lisp I've developed. Also words that contain either "f" or "th" are very difficult because the air goes out through the space between my teeth.
So, the orthodontist has first referred me to a periodontist because I have some bone loss above my front teeth. He said that I might need a bone graft before he can actually put my braces on. I hope that won't be the case.
So, I'm trying to wrap my head around all of this and have been feeling very, very sorry for myself. I am just hoping that I will not have undue amounts of pain and that I won't cry every time I look in the mirror. Having said that, I am also looking forward to starting my treatment because right now I look just ghastly with this HUGE space in my teeth. I have been having so much anxiety over the prospect of having to get braces and what they are going to do to my social life (dating while wearing braces? I doubt it!) and have been getting seriously depressed over the whole thing that I finally decided that I have to take some definitive action and just get the process started. The sooner I start, the sooner it will be finished.
This message forum has been unbelievably helpful to me and I am very grateful that I found it. I think that my journey back to restored dental health will be much smoother with the help of this wonderful community. Thank you.
Life is not measured by the number of breaths you take,
but by the moments that take your breath away.
-- Maya Angelou

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My story here: [url]http://www.archwired.com/phpbb2/viewtopic.php?t=42752

and here:
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My blog: http://dvorahstraintracksadventure.blogspot.ca/

Angel269
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Re: Getting Braces At The Age of 54!

#2 Post by Angel269 » Sun Sep 09, 2012 5:09 pm

Hi Dee

Great to hear more about your situation.

It's good to hear that you will be starting treatment in Oct as opposed to Feb-You will see so much progress just in that short time.

I have my next appointment in about 2 and a half weeks, desperate to change this powerchain as it has a slight yellowy tinge but on other hand blends with my archwire.

Take care and you should feel proud of yourself for going ahead with getting braces-I am, as a teenager the thought absolutely repulsed me :-(

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My braces story: http://www.archwired.com/phpbb2/viewtop ... =9&t=42457

Impressions-08/06/12
Big Day-22/06/12
Started using Bite Plate-14/07/12
Estimated treatment-8 months (upper ceramics)
Debond date-04/03/13

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Dee17
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Re: Getting Braces At The Age of 54!

#3 Post by Dee17 » Sun Sep 09, 2012 6:46 pm

Hi Angel,
Thanks for your message. Yes, I suppose that slowly I am getting used to the idea. Or maybe I should say that I'm resigned to it. I just hope that I don't freak out when they actually go on. I've been having so much anxiety and was starting to feel really, really depressed about the whole thing that I thought I really just had to take some kind of action and that by doing so, I would feel better. I must admit that the night after I had finally made the decision to proceed, I felt much better and got a really good night's sleep. So, here's to some positive change in my life. I'm sure hoping that the two years will pass quickly!
Life is not measured by the number of breaths you take,
but by the moments that take your breath away.
-- Maya Angelou

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My story here: [url]http://www.archwired.com/phpbb2/viewtopic.php?t=42752

and here:
http://www.archwired.com/phpbb2/viewtop ... =9&t=42976

My blog: http://dvorahstraintracksadventure.blogspot.ca/

klobird
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Re: Getting Braces At The Age of 54!

#4 Post by klobird » Sun Sep 09, 2012 6:54 pm

Hey Dee--I was 55 when I got braces (I'm 56 now). Socially, it's just not that bad...(I have the Damon all metal). So many older people are getting braces these days. Nobody does a double take, nobody seems to even notice. And as I'm getting closer to the 2 year mark, I'm surprised at how fast it has gone....I'm not sure, at this age, that I really want time to be zipping by so fast!!

TMJJill
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Re: Getting Braces At The Age of 54!

#5 Post by TMJJill » Sun Sep 09, 2012 7:41 pm

Welcome to ArchWired. My reasons were different, but I too never thought I'd have braces as an adult. I developed TMJD and need the braces to fix my bite.

I opted for the Damon clears and for the most part have found them pretty easy to deal with. I thought everyone would notice, but honestly, I had to point the braces out to some people. Even after talking to them face-to-face they didn't realize I had the braces on. It sounds like you made a good choice.

Good luck on your braces day.
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Braces as Phase II treatment for TMJD.
Lower mandibular repositioning splint 26 months.
Lower braces on 10.75 months into Phase II treatment.
Duration in braces: 2 years, 2 weeks, 5 days
Removal of Braces: September 18, 2013

TMJD treatment now complete!

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Dee17
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Re: Getting Braces At The Age of 54!

#6 Post by Dee17 » Mon Sep 10, 2012 7:20 am

Hi Jill,
Thanks for your message. I'm not sure that I actually made a "choice" per se... I think that I finally came to the conclusion that I no longer had a choice. Like you, it was either submit to the prospect of wearing braces or walk around looking like with a gap tooth smile for the rest of my life.
I considered Damon clears but understand that they are quite bulky in the mouth and decided that I didn't want to have to deal with that kind of feeling. Already I always feel like I have food stuck in my teeth and I don't even have my braces on yet!
My orthodontist said that my bite was "beautiful, just the way nature intended." But then he said, in the next breath, that complicated my case somewhat. He didn't really elaborate on it very much so I'm not really sure what he meant by that comment.
Thanks for your good wishes. Everyone on this message forum has been incredibly helpful and supportive and much of the information I found here was what really helped me finally turn the corner and decide to move forward with my treatment.
Life is not measured by the number of breaths you take,
but by the moments that take your breath away.
-- Maya Angelou

[
Image
My story here: [url]http://www.archwired.com/phpbb2/viewtopic.php?t=42752

and here:
http://www.archwired.com/phpbb2/viewtop ... =9&t=42976

My blog: http://dvorahstraintracksadventure.blogspot.ca/

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Dee17
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Re: Getting Braces At The Age of 54!

#7 Post by Dee17 » Tue Sep 11, 2012 7:44 pm

So, it looks like I've passed my first social hurdle. Tonight I was at a get-together with a group of close friends and we were trying to set some dates for a yearly calendar. We came to October and someone suggested something for October 28th. So, I said, "I don't know if I'll be able to make that. I have to get braces on my teeth on October 25th." And no one batted an eye or even asked me any questions about it. So, maybe everyone has been right. Getting braces is a much bigger deal to the person who's getting them they it is to the world at large. I hope so.
Life is not measured by the number of breaths you take,
but by the moments that take your breath away.
-- Maya Angelou

[
Image
My story here: [url]http://www.archwired.com/phpbb2/viewtopic.php?t=42752

and here:
http://www.archwired.com/phpbb2/viewtop ... =9&t=42976

My blog: http://dvorahstraintracksadventure.blogspot.ca/

redwine
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Re: Getting Braces At The Age of 54!

#8 Post by redwine » Wed Sep 12, 2012 7:23 am

I just got braces about five weeks ago, and turned 56 on the 31st. Nobody seems to pay any attention to my braces except me! And my family, who all think I'm nuts to be doing this. However, my family members all have their own issues... ha! I go for my first adjustment tomorrow and am interested to see what happens. I can see (and feel) changes already! I think we're brave as well as pragmatic, getting braces as adults. Beats the heck out of dentures!
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Dee17
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Re: Getting Braces At The Age of 54!

#9 Post by Dee17 » Wed Sep 12, 2012 7:33 am

Boy, you're sure right about that. Having braces will be better than having dentures ANY day! My orthodontist told me that if I didn't get braces that I would run the risk of eventually losing my two front teeth. I certainly don't want that to happen.
My family has been remarkably uninterested in this whole process which may be a good thing. I think that so far I'm the only one who's been having a fit over it. But, I guess that makes sense because I'm the one who is going to have to walk around in them for two years. Ugh. I am really dreading the whole thing. I know I'm going to have to get over it and I'm sure I will. I expect that once they're actually on I will feel much better and much more settled. Still, I'm not looking forward to the first time I get a look at myself in a mirror. I think that's going to be quite a moment for me.
Life is not measured by the number of breaths you take,
but by the moments that take your breath away.
-- Maya Angelou

[
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My story here: [url]http://www.archwired.com/phpbb2/viewtopic.php?t=42752

and here:
http://www.archwired.com/phpbb2/viewtop ... =9&t=42976

My blog: http://dvorahstraintracksadventure.blogspot.ca/

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Barb E
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Re: Getting Braces At The Age of 54!

#10 Post by Barb E » Thu Sep 13, 2012 7:12 pm

My right canine is snapped off at the gum line.
In a week I'm having the implant that is right next to it removed.

I then have to wait 2 months before I can get my braces on (To correct my overbite that they believe is causing my top teeth to break) so the bone they'll put in the hole left by the implant has time to settle in.

I have way more anxiety about the 2 months with the giant gap in my teeth than I am the 2.5-3 years I'll be in braces!

I'll be 52 when my braces go on.
Barb
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"Today is tomorrow's time machine"
Dr G~

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Dee17
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Re: Getting Braces At The Age of 54!

#11 Post by Dee17 » Fri Sep 14, 2012 7:24 am

Hi Barb,
I can certainly relate to your story and your worries about having a gap in your teeth for two months before your braces go on. I have been living with a very large gap (about 3.5 mm) in my two front teeth. While that has caused me a great deal of embarrassment and anxiety, only one person has so far made a comment about it. I think most people are too polite to point out something like that. I've actually stopped worrying about it and have now shifted all my worry and anxiety to how I'm going to actually look (and feel) when I'm actually wearing my braces. But I'm slowly starting to get over that as well. I've pretty much come to the conclusion that no one really WILL care. When they see me, they might do a bit of a double-take as it registers and then they'll just carry on with whatever they were doing. I think you'll find the same thing when you're dealing with the loss of your tooth. Some people might look at you askance, but most probably won't even notice.
Life is not measured by the number of breaths you take,
but by the moments that take your breath away.
-- Maya Angelou

[
Image
My story here: [url]http://www.archwired.com/phpbb2/viewtopic.php?t=42752

and here:
http://www.archwired.com/phpbb2/viewtop ... =9&t=42976

My blog: http://dvorahstraintracksadventure.blogspot.ca/

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Dee17
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Re: Getting Braces At The Age of 54!

#12 Post by Dee17 » Fri Sep 14, 2012 12:06 pm

So, I think I finally figured out how to post photos. Anyway, here they are in all their gruesome glory.
Link to the album on photobucket.com

http://s1155.photobucket.com/albums/p55 ... view_click
Life is not measured by the number of breaths you take,
but by the moments that take your breath away.
-- Maya Angelou

[
Image
My story here: [url]http://www.archwired.com/phpbb2/viewtopic.php?t=42752

and here:
http://www.archwired.com/phpbb2/viewtop ... =9&t=42976

My blog: http://dvorahstraintracksadventure.blogspot.ca/

oldguy
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Re: Getting Braces At The Age of 54!

#13 Post by oldguy » Mon Oct 15, 2012 9:02 pm

The last 10 days of processing "I going to have braces" is a tough one, I waited from August to October before I got mine

I have had braces for 2 weeks now, some discomfort, not even pain. No body cares I have braces, I have Damon top

and bottom, metal. I'm in my 60's, and one lady said to me "you have braces", didn't know what to say. I thought the

whole world knew. She then said "Good for you"

Looking forward to your experiences in the future.

oldguy

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Dee17
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Re: Getting Braces At The Age of 54!

#14 Post by Dee17 » Tue Oct 16, 2012 7:40 am

Well, after my earlier post where I said that my orthodontist said that I had a bite like "nature intended" he has now changed his opinion (after seeing my impressions) and says that I have a deep bite. So, when he puts my braces on next week, he's also going to be putting what he called "bite turbos" on my back molars but which I think are probably molar buildups. He said it will be to a) open my bite and b) stop me from clenching my teeth in my sleep. The periodontist said that there was quite a bit of wear of my back teeth from clenching but, he said, "You won't be able to do that anymore once you get your braces." He did NOT, however, say anything about the bite turbo things! The orthodontist said that the bite turbos will keep my jaw open and that I won't be able to bite down. I've done some research about this and I understand that this means I won't be able to chew. He said, "You'll need to eat a soft food diet." Unfortunately for me, I did not ask him how long those things would have to be in my mouth. I guess I won't find out until I go to have my braces put on at the end of next week. So, I haven't been a happy camper since then.
He and I talked (again) about powerchains to close my gap and I told him (again) that I really don't want to have to have those on my teeth. He didn't seem very sympathetic. Well, I shouldn't say that. What he said was that it is possible to close a gap using just a wire and elastics but that mine is very large and it would take a very long time. He only likes to keep his adult patients in their braces for about two years (although he did say that he thinks I might take 26-28 months -- Eeek!). So, my anxiety meter has been absolutely clanging ever since I saw him. Luckily there isn't much more time to go before I get them put on. I think I will be able to settle down after that happens. I just hope I'm going to be able to eat! I'm a Type I diabetic and I take in most of my carbs in the form of crackers, bread and things like that. I know that those types of food pose a problem for people who wear braces so I'm concerned about my diet.
Life is not measured by the number of breaths you take,
but by the moments that take your breath away.
-- Maya Angelou

[
Image
My story here: [url]http://www.archwired.com/phpbb2/viewtopic.php?t=42752

and here:
http://www.archwired.com/phpbb2/viewtop ... =9&t=42976

My blog: http://dvorahstraintracksadventure.blogspot.ca/

plugnickel69
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Re: Getting Braces At The Age of 54!

#15 Post by plugnickel69 » Tue Oct 16, 2012 10:12 am

Don't fret about powerchains. I don't think I'm in the minority, byt I find them no big deal. I only feel pressure as they are putting them on, then afterward they feel no different for me than regular ligs.

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