Braces at 30 - FINALLY!

If you want to share the detailed saga of your braces story, this is the place to do it. You can use this forum as a braces journal, editing and updating your posts as your treatment goes on. Remember to also visit the main ArchWired.com site for additional stories from other readers!

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littlething
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Re: Braces at 30 - FINALLY!

#16 Post by littlething » Tue Apr 19, 2016 3:09 pm

Week 3 and I've had to go back to the ortho AGAIN. It seems that I've ended up there every week, so sometimes I worry that I'm starting to be annoying. Managed to dislodge my wire from the tube on my molar bands over the weekend. It was poking me and super irritating, so I tried to get it back in myself before I gave up and called them first thing Monday. Funny thing is that when the assistant first looked at it, she was like "what do you mean it came out? It's in, just bent" so it looks like I did manage to get it back in myself. Problem was that when she first got it back in properly, I was biting down on the end of the wire and I found it super irritating. My ortho came over to join the party and ended up coming over to help, and he ended up just cutting it off at the first molar (I have a band on the first molar and the wisdom tooth, and the second molar there is broken and being extracting next week), since the whole thing is getting replaced next week at my adjustment anyway.

I also had poky wires on top so they were able to clip those off for me. They were getting super irritating, and I was using wax on them but it didn't cover it completely.

He also told the assistant to switch out some of my rubber ties on my rotated teeth and retie them as figure 8s. so my teeth have been feeling super tight and slightly sore again, grr.

Still seeing movement, mostly on my uppers. My central incisors are almost straight now! The right one was super sore all weekend, so I figured it had been moving - was sore enough that I had to take a few Advils. Noticing gaps at the gumline everywhere, which I'm not thrilled about, but figured it's a sign that the teeth are moving and that it will be dealt with at some point...

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Day 1 vs. today. Not noticing much movement on my lower teeth, but looking at these pictures, I can see a tiny bit of movement, and the wire looks slightly straighter...

Extractions and my first adjustment on Monday, eeeeek. Will update afterwards.

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littlething
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Re: Braces at 30 - FINALLY!

#17 Post by littlething » Wed Apr 27, 2016 2:55 pm

Extractions are DONE.

They were not fun, but I survived, and they were nowhere near as bad as I was making them out to be all this time (I've known for a really long time that those teeth would need to come out). They were done by a specialist (periodontist) who works out of my dentist's office two days a month. I had liked him and thought he was a super nice guy when I met him at my consult. I was pretty calm about the whole thing until Thursday, when they called to remind me about my appointment. I had gone away from the weekend, figuring it would help distract me, but by the time Monday morning came around, I was freaking out about them. There was a power outage in the area that morning, and I *almost* wished that it would make them have to reschedule, but also I knew the more I dragged it out, the more anxious I was going to be. (He did say that they almost had to call me to reschedule, though, and joked that he knew that I wish they had.)

Unfortunately, the first tooth he tried to take out (the bottom left second molar) ended up being a stubborn one that just refused to come out, and he had to keep coming back to it throughout the appointment. He went to take out another tooth (upper left premolar), which came out super quickly, and came back to work on the first one and it still wouldn't come out. At this point, I was mentally DONE and just wanted to not be there. He did constantly check in with me to see if I was doing ok and kept telling me I was doing great, but I just wanted the damn tooth to come out and just be done with the whole thing. He then took out the lateral incisor, which he had originally thought would be the hardest tooth to take out, but that came out fairly easily. Then he did the bottom right molar, and that one was also super quick. Then it was back to the stubborn tooth. It turns out that it was also getting stuck on the molar band, and that was making it really difficult for it to come out, but he eventually got it out. This also dislodged the band a little bit, so he sent me a note to take to my ortho to tell them to re-cement it. The whole thing was done in 45 minutes, but it felt like I was there for an eternity. Overall though, it wasn't too bad. I am just relieved that I FINALLY got it over with. After 15 minutes or so of waiting for the blood to clot adequately (the two easiest extractions actually ended up clotting almost immediately after the teeth came out), I was dismissed.

Then it was back to the ortho for my first adjustment. I moved up a wire size on the top, and I have a power chain all across the top to start closing the extraction gaps there (especially the missing lateral). Not thrilled about the gap in the front, but it's a fairly small gap (about 4-5mm), and I did notice that the canine was already shifting into that space over the last month even before the extraction happened, so I think it's going to close fairly quickly. Also got a bunch of wire ligs instead of rubber ones on all my rotated teeth to help them become better engaged to the wire - so most of my lowers, and a few upper teeth. I accidentally bit the tech working on me, almost right after she said that I was nice and that she liked me, HA. I thought she had said to close, but apparently not. I was also so numb from the extractions that I couldn't even really feel what I was doing with my mouth, anyway. I really do like everyone at my ortho's office (including my ortho), and I know that's important.

I was really not looking forward to the recovery, considering that I was absolutely miserable during my first week in braces, and I thought that the soreness from the braces plus the pain from the extractions would send me over the edge. Surprisingly, I have had almost no discomfort from the extractions. It took a while for the bleeding to stop (mostly from the stubborn tooth, which also got a stitch in), but after that everything has been dandy. I was told to take 600mg of ibuprofen every 6-8 hours, which I did before I left the office, and once before I went to bed on Monday, but have not needed it since. My teeth are all slightly sore from the adjustment, especially with pressure on them, but it has been a walk in the park compared to that first week! I'm definitely not complaining.

I go back for my second adjustment in 3 weeks.

Week 4 photos (top is day 1, bottom is from today):
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Tiche
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Re: Braces at 30 - FINALLY!

#18 Post by Tiche » Sun May 22, 2016 9:23 pm

Nice you finally got your braces! What kind of braces do you have? (I can see it's not Damon clear)

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littlething
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Re: Braces at 30 - FINALLY!

#19 Post by littlething » Mon May 23, 2016 10:57 am

Went for my second adjustment on Friday. The whole thing ended up taking an hour, geez. I have new wire sizes on both top and bottom (can't remember what they were though), still have wire ties on all the rotated teeth. Re-cemented the molar band that got knocked loose during my extractions, so my wires go back to my molars again. Still have a powerchain going from the first molars on either side, and now have one on the bottoms going along the entire bottom.

Biggest change is that I have now started on elastics. Class II on the left, Class III on the right. A big part of my treatment plan is the use of elastics, but I wasn't expecting to start on them so soon! Not gonna lie, they SUCK. :-+ The first two days it felt like someone had punched me in the mouth. That feeling has finally passed, but I do still have some soreness, and they are annoying.

Anyways, some progress photos...
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Top photo is day 1, middle is after my extractions/first adjustment, and bottom is after my second adjustment. Haven't seen much movement on my uppers since my last adjustment, but the lowers are finally starting to straighten out a bit, yay!

Gap closure progress...top photo is from a week after extractions, bottom is from Friday
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I feel like it hasn't closed that much, and I know you don't want to go too fast, but also I'm really antsy since it as a front tooth and all. I do know that it has closed a bit (about 1.5mm), since I've been measuring it, but I don't feel like it's noticeably getting smaller. You can barely tell from these photos. The girls at my ortho's office all said that they can definitely tell that it's smaller (my boyfriend thinks so too), and they predicted that by my next adjustment it will be considerably smaller. I know that the elastics are supposed to help with this, so let's hope it speeds up. The gap from my premolar extraction has closed really quickly. The molars/wisdom teeth weren't engaged until now, but I'm not expecting those gaps to close anytime soon.

Next adjustment is in 5 weeks. I also finally caved to my ortho's suggestion that I go for 3 month cleanings, and I will be getting that done on the same day as well. Yay for the convenience of having my dentist and ortho across the street from each other.
Last edited by littlething on Mon May 23, 2016 11:57 am, edited 5 times in total.

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littlething
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Re: Braces at 30 - FINALLY!

#20 Post by littlething » Mon May 23, 2016 11:02 am

Tiche wrote:Nice you finally got your braces! What kind of braces do you have? (I can see it's not Damon clear)
Yup, not Damons...not sure what brand, didn't ask. Just ceramic :)

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buffon85
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Re: Braces at 30 - FINALLY!

#21 Post by buffon85 » Mon May 23, 2016 2:00 pm

hi! nice stoy
i have dental fear too, i visited a dentist for the first time when i was 28 (the worst part was my shame about the situation of my teeth, 6 cavities and a root canal-that now is extracted). it seems crazy that i have 4 teeth extracted, i never believed i could make it! for me it was an unpleasant experience too, i didn´t even get any pill after, but i hated the whole process and the next 2-3 days were hard, not because of the pain but it was so uncomfortable!

it so great to see your teeth changing! keep us updated :D
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bottom premolars extractions: 9th of June 2015
top premolars extractions: 8th of October 2015

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littlething
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Re: Braces at 30 - FINALLY!

#22 Post by littlething » Mon Jun 27, 2016 1:26 pm

buffon85 wrote:hi! nice stoy
i have dental fear too, i visited a dentist for the first time when i was 28 (the worst part was my shame about the situation of my teeth, 6 cavities and a root canal-that now is extracted). it seems crazy that i have 4 teeth extracted, i never believed i could make it! for me it was an unpleasant experience too, i didn´t even get any pill after, but i hated the whole process and the next 2-3 days were hard, not because of the pain but it was so uncomfortable!

it so great to see your teeth changing! keep us updated :D
Thanks for the comment :) I totally know what you mean about the shame, that was probably a huge part of my fear as well. And I never thought I'd ever get through all the work to even get to the point that my teeth were healthy enough for braces, but here I am, a year later and 3 months into braces! Well done to you to overcoming your fear as well!

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littlething
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Re: Braces at 30 - FINALLY!

#23 Post by littlething » Mon Jun 27, 2016 1:45 pm

Had my third adjustment on Friday. Got new wires - .017 square on top, .018 square on bottom. If anything, they took away more than they put on this time. I only now have a power chain on the top at the moment. I can tell my bottom teeth have moved quite a bit in the last month, because I still have wire ligatures on all the rotations, but now I only have 3 on the lower, whereas almost every tooth had a wire ligature before this.

Still wearing elastics in the same configuration. Ortho says I've been doing a good job with them - yay!

I think I've noticed the most movement in between appointments this month. My lower teeth have been moving quite a bit finally - yay! I also noticed that right after this adjustment, my lower left canine, which has been super far back of my other teeth, has finally started to shift forward.

Have been pretty sore the last few days, but after

Some progress photos...

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And my gap closure progress...
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So basically, I stare at this gap every day and it seems like a huge gaping hole that never seems like it's going to close. I knew when I decided to get that lateral put that it was going to be a slow process, but the wait has been excruciating! I always think when I look at it that there is hardly any progress. But looking at these photos, I can see that it is definitely closing a lot faster than I think it is!

Didn't notice much until seeing pictures, but my bite is changing too! I can feel my bite being different every day, but I didn't realize that my overbite is much less prominent now.

Next adjustment is in 6 weeks...part of the reason there's more time than usual (I'm usually every 4 weeks) is that my dentist's office had to reschedule my cleaning appointment and it just makes more sense to get everything done in the same day, since I'd have to get the wires out and such. I finally caved and went to 3 month cleanings, but at that rate it will be 5 months. Oh well. I was fighting the every 3 months, but despite all the time and energy I spend cleaning my teeth every day, I started noticing tartar build up on my bottom teeth - argh.

Ran into my ortho randomly on the street a few weeks ago. It was funny because he had to introduce himself to me, which I thought was weird, and I thought maybe I had a confused expression on my face. He brought it up at my appointment, and said that every time he runs into a patient, they never recognize him and they give him funny looks...but he was happy that I did, in fact, recognize him. Hahaha!

On a side note, it as been just about a year since I first went in for my initial ortho consult and this crazy journey started. What a year it has been! I am proud of myself for overcoming my fears and making this happen, and am definitely happy with the progress so far.

tillybrace
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Re: Braces at 30 - FINALLY!

#24 Post by tillybrace » Mon Jul 25, 2016 12:49 pm

i am envious of your progress so far, you can see the imporvement already

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littlething
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Re: Braces at 30 - FINALLY!

#25 Post by littlething » Mon Aug 15, 2016 12:26 pm

Had my 4th adjustment about a week ago, but I've been too lazy to take pictures and post here. :)

I finally broke a bracket in between adjustments, and didn't even notice for awhile. I just thought that specific bracket looked weird, until one day, I saw food stuck underneath it, and I realized it was off the tooth. When I finally called, I couldn't get in because of both me and my ortho being out of town for consecutive weeks, so we just dealt with it at this adjustment. Now I am afraid to eat anything too crazy for fear of breaking something else!

Also went in for a cleaning at my dentist's office. I had finally caved to my ortho's recommendation of going every 3 months, but because of some rescheduling (and being that since my dentist and ortho are across the street from each other, and because I'd have to get my wire out anyway, it makes more sense to just do it on an adjustment day), I ended up closer to the 6 month mark anyway. Was due for an exam and x-rays, and my dentist says everything looks good and stable, and says things are completely different than when I first came in to see him (just over a year ago now). Considering the mess of a mouth that I had before, this was good to hear. The hygienist was super happy with my hygiene, and thinks every 6 months is plenty, so I guess that's that.

Have the same wire on the bottom (.018 square), and .016 round on top. Still have powerchains on top, and have them on the bottom again. My ortho told me to stop wearing rubber bands for now, and I am enjoying not having the added force on my jaw. I think they were making me clench my jaw in my sleep, because I am noticing less soreness in the morning. Back to having a bunch of wire ties, which I'm not thrilled about, because they are a giant pain when I floss (they snag ALL THE TIME).

The tech was having a little bit of trouble getting the wire engaged onto one of my brackets, so she called my ortho over again, and at that point, he decided to reposition a bracket. That was NOT fun - it HURT when he pried it off! It also set off the soreness, but I noticed that my teeth had shifted within 2 hours! I was noticing that the right side of my uppers were starting to slope slightly upwards, and the central incisors were uneven. That fixed itself after the bracket was repositioned...

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Top is with my wires out, just before my cleaning appointment, bottom is about 2 hours after my adjustment.

Anyways, progress photos. I am quite impressed at how much my bottom arch has straightened out! It still feels pretty jagged when I run my tongue across the back of my teeth, but from the front, it looks almost (but not quite) straight. Left side is the day I got braced, right was taken last week:
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Can't really see much movement in the molars/wisdom teeth in those photos, but I am starting to feel my extraction gaps get smaller there.

I was starting to think that I was starting to reach the point where my progress is slowing down, because I thought that I was barely seeing any movement. Seeing these photos side-by-side, though, I realized that my teeth are still indeed moving. I do think that most of my movement happens in the first few days after an adjustment, and then I feel like nothing happens. But I realize that my teeth are CONSTANTLY moving, based on how my bite is and which teeth are sore every morning. My face is also changing - it is longer and less round, which I actually like. And my lips seem fuller, too...

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My gap is FINALLY starting to close up a bit. They are far less noticeable now. I'm guessing these will finally start closing up in the next month or two, based on how things have been moving. I CAN'T WAIT for that to happen!!!
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Crazy how much my bite has changed too. My dentist said during my exam that he usually asks patients if they have noticed changes in their bite, but in my case, clearly it has!

Next adjustment second week of September.

On a side note, I've been waking up with white spots on my teeth. They disappear within an hour or so. My dentist did once mention when color matching for fillings in my front teeth that teeth turn lighter in color when they are dehydrated, so I'm guessing that's what it is, since I've been turning into a mouth breather in my sleep lately. I figured I would ask my ortho about it at my next appointment, but they were totally freaking me out!

Tinchi7
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Re: Braces at 30 - FINALLY!

#26 Post by Tinchi7 » Tue Aug 16, 2016 2:32 am

Nice progress, your results look like they'll be amazing in the end!

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buffon85
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Re: Braces at 30 - FINALLY!

#27 Post by buffon85 » Sun Aug 28, 2016 4:41 pm

i am so happy for your progress! your bottom arch is amazing!
your gap is much smaller now!
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bottom premolars extractions: 9th of June 2015
top premolars extractions: 8th of October 2015

Bracingmyself33
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Re: Braces at 30 - FINALLY!

#28 Post by Bracingmyself33 » Sun Aug 28, 2016 5:11 pm

Have been following your updates and I'm so envious of your vast improvements in just 4 months!

Keep updating! It's so exciting! :D
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Cyndi2016
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Re: Braces at 30 - FINALLY!

#29 Post by Cyndi2016 » Mon Aug 29, 2016 6:09 am

Awesome progress, that is so exciting :) I am very much like you in I had a lot of dental work prior. I spent the summer in and out of the dentists office. I had my top braces placed about 5 weeks ago and the bottom ones placed on Friday. Still really struggling with the bottoms. Good Luck :)
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27braces88
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Re: Braces at 30 - FINALLY!

#30 Post by 27braces88 » Mon Aug 29, 2016 2:19 pm

Wow, your teeth are looking so much better already. They'll look great once the gaps have closed up. You must be really happy with the result so far :)
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