After nearly 3 years of pain, discomfort, stress, appointments, travel, time (I could go on), I have a firm and confirmed date for the removal of my braces: March 16. It has been a long time coming. Funny, because I hate March. I have always hated March. Nothing good has ever happened in March. In weather terms, you never know what is going to fall out of the sky – and how much. But for one small moment, the sun will be shining on me on that day.
I had braces when I was a teenager. Then, it was to straighten my crooked teeth. My wisdom teeth had a mind of their own however, and they came in after my braces came off – forcing my bite to go haywire. So, fast forward 20 years or so and I knew I finally had to do something about my bizarre non-bite – or it would be curtains for many of my teeth – under stress from not being in the proper spot. The prospect of bone grafting to tooth loss to bridges didn’t particularly appeal to me. I was already experiencing trouble associated with the bite – loss of bone, loss of gum tissue, gum grafting (more in another post on that horror story later).
Apart from major jaw reconstruction to fix my bite, I decided on the less invasive route – orthodontics. I would need orthodontics to move teeth anyway, so it was an easy decision. There were nerve-testing moments – having screws drilled into my jaw bone to upright tilted over teeth; wire pokes; pain from tooth movement. But now, all that is over. The heavy lifting is over. It’s quite a transformation: I am now biting on teeth I have never bit on in decades. It feels really good and solid.
Along with the shift in teeth has come a shift in my jaw and a change in how I look – as I call it, internal plastic surgery. As my upper teeth have moved out, I have a completely new look to my profile and my face. It’s remarkable really. Now I know how all those Hollywood types feel when they get real plastic surgery.
Although I’m looking forward to March 16, my thrill won’t last long. On March 20, I undergo another round of gum grafting. As I said before, nothing good has ever happened in March. I’m trying not to think about that and just going to enjoy this blessed event that I’ve been looking forward to for a long, long time.
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