Sunday, 31 July 2011

End of the Month Update!

Hi everyone, hope all is well and that you're enjoying summer (if it's summer where you live!).

I had my braces tightened earlier this month and it wasn't bad at all! It had a little sensitivity for the rest of the day and went away, no where near the sensitivity that happened at first when the braces were initally put on.

To close the gap (The gap is quite small as it stands now, I'm not at home at the moment so I don't have a mirror and ruler to measure but its' probably 4mm I'm going to guess?), the orthodontist took a transparent string-like band and attached it to the two braces to have the teeth come together in the front since the SARPE gap was quite large. It was closing on their own, but they said they wanted to help it a long a bit.

Me being somewhat cautious person, asked if there was any potential risks in doing so, such as root resorption - they said no and not to worry! :) I also asked them if things such as mistakenly hitting your teeth with a fork or sneezing and then hitting your teeth with your arm (lol yes it happened while I was covering my sneeze) can cause root resorption and they also said not to worry. You need a decent amount of trauma to the teeth to cause root resorption, plus, the x-rays they take during your treatment will show any signs of such and they will take the necessary action to curb or deal with the problem.

The top teeth are very nice now, they weren't bad before but my god the transformation already is noticeable  They said the top was progressing very well and in fact they changed the arch-wire to a thicker one as the thinner one has done it's course. The bottom though still needs some work as it was quite crowded down there before.

I also had an appointement with my Orthodontic Surgeon for a quick check up, everything is great! *knock on wood* and the arch is a perfect size and shaping up nicely! *also knock on wood* :). He figures by sometime in September we'll have an estimation from the ortho as to when the orthodontic process will be complete and then with that information tentatively book  me in for surgery. Due to scheduling, I probably won't be having the surgery until Fall of 2012, but that's fine with me - I'll take the greatly improved jaw and teeth as an amazing Christmas Gift :P

Aside from that, nothing much to report! Which is of course a good thing. I'll be posting in September after my other appointments!

All the best to everyone!


Friday, 8 July 2011

Nothing to report, that's good!

Just letting everyone know everything's going great and there's nothing really to report! I've been eating basically everything (including steak, but cut into tiny pieces) for a while now, and thankfully the cankers don't really come back after a few weeks of getting the braces on. I can eat, talk, etc. without wax now which I'm really happy for!

I go in a week from now (the 15th) to get my braces tightened, I have some questions I'm going to ask the Orthodonist and of which will post the question and their response on here just in case others have the same questions I have.

I believe I also have an appointment with my surgeon sometime in late July, though I need to call and confirm that soon just to make sure haha.

The gap has closed quite considerably, though not completely. I figure in about 3 or so more months it will be completely gone (but again I'll ask the ortho! :))

Hope everyone's doing well!


Monday, 16 May 2011

Swelling Gone, Cankers Basically Gone... But... a Bracket Fell Off! Haha. And, potential relapse!

Hi everyone, pretty cool to see the stats on here, 148 page views so far this month! I hope my information is helping anyone who is going through/will go though this process!
Okay, so, as I posted last week I developed some cankers and swelling from the braces. The swelling is gone and the cankers are almost gone. My mouth has actually taken to braces quite well I would say as I no longer even need to use wax! Sweet! I mean, the wax isn't that bad anyway it's just annoying putting it on and having it fall off if you're eating, taking it off and  then re-applying it when you're brushing your teeth, etc.

Last Friday though I noticed some tenderness in the top of my mouth from what feels like the expander pressing firmly on the top of my mouth. The Ortho suggested it is most likely relapse, which freaked me out at first but he said it's to be expected in almost any situation with jaw movement and that is the exact reason why the expander is in there, to prevent it from moving any further. I was happy to hear that, and, to get peace of mind, I made an appointment with my surgon for him to take a look at all the developments. He's very happy with everything and all is well! Great! :)

As I was eating lunch after the appointment a braces bracket on tooth #7R (last tooth before your wisdom tooth I believe, right side) broke off my tooth. Thankfully my orthodonist was up the street and had a free spot available an hour later, I got that fixed no problem.

So, that's some updates this week! If any one has any questions please feel free to comment and I'll respond to them.

Have a great day everyone!

Saturday, 7 May 2011

Braces Installed, Cankers and Swelling Soon Followed! LOL

Hi everyone,

I just got my braces installed this past Wednesday. The mentioned to me as they were putting them on that I would need to take Advil for a few days afterward as there would be pain from the teeth being pushed around. Thankfully, it wasn't as bad as I was thinking it would be and actually didn't need to take any Advil at all. My teeth did feel a bit tender, but it was the same feeling as when they put the spacers in for the palette expander; tender and sensitive to pressure (biting down). I'm happy to say though that today, Saturday, the sensitivity to pressure is almost all gone.

That said, due to my braces' brackets rubbing against my cheeks, I have three cankers in my mouth right now! The largest one is on the right side of my face a little under the upper lip. The second largest one is also on the right side in the middle back of my cheek where the braces wire ends. These two in combined I believe has caused light swelling of the cheek which is not the best situation since I'm tired of getting swelling haha, if you read through my previous posts you'll notice that I seem to be prone to them. The third canker is on the left side of my face a little under my top lip - knock on wood - it's not that big and I believe it will go away soon.

Aside from the canker and swelling, it's not that bad. It hasn't impacted my speech as much as I thought it would, though I'm currently talking very carefully to not irritate the cheeks further. Additionally, I've noticed I drool allot when brushing my teeth but that's not a big deal! Brushing the teeth takes a little longer because you just need to make sure you don't brush off the little elastics, but that's about it. Also, the waterpik is amazing.

I'll post about the progress on the cankers and swelling as it happens!

Hope everyone has a great weekend and are getting some wonderful spring weather like we are in Toronto today!


Saturday, 2 April 2011

Little Update Here!

Hi everyone/anyone who's reading this!

Not much to write about at the moment, ever since the initial swelling went down and the infection of the cheek passing nothing much has been happening. I will be getting braces on the 4th of May, so I am sure I will be writing up about that experience for sure as from what I am told you feel a lot!

One thing that I would like to mention is that, out of the blue, it seemed as though swelling started coming back on the side where the infection was before! I thought the antibiotics didn't take it out completely, and was quite worried. I decided to sleep on it though and wait a few days before potentially getting another round of antibiotics. I'm glad I waited! It thankfully went away on its own in a few days and went back to normal. THEN, swelling seemed to slightly come up on the other cheek! That went away in two days. So, as it stands now, no visible swelling at all!

In terms of nerves and feelings, most of the feeling in the top gums and teeth are back. Previously, I couldn't feel myself brushing the top gums or the teeth, though now I can, that's nice! If I push on my sinuses near my nose I can feel what seems to be a bit of muscle soreness/tension of some sort, but there's no visible inflammation/swelling.

Chewing and all that jazz is completely back to normal in my opinion; I've eaten steak, burgers, chewable vitamins, and peanuts too. I don't think I'd be able to break a jawbreaker just yet though ;)

One of my front teeth have flared out due to the expanding, and because of its movement and expanding of the gums it almost looks as though a "chunk" of the gum is gone, but it's just where the front teeth used to be; it will all go back to normal I was told. So, if anyone is worried and thinking things like gums degrading or some weird infection, it most likely isn't any of those things; it's just caused by the movement of the teeth when you're expanding!

I put a piece of napkin where my gap is to make it look like I have a full smile, I stepped back from the mirror a bit to make it less noticeable that it's a napkin and smiled - it got me really, really excited! I am so happy that I am on my way to a broad, functional smile! :)

If anybody has questions, please feel free to ask me. At the moment, I don't have much to write about so if I'm not answering something you're wondering about please post it in the comments and I'll get back to you.

Cheers everyone!

Wednesday, 9 March 2011

Last Ortho Appointment Before Braces. Met Someone With Double Jaw Surgery!

So I had my last ortho appointment to check up on my expanding before I get my braces on. It appears as though one side is under expanded where the other side is perfect, so the ortho wants to expand another 6 turns, so that means I will have expanded to 12mm when I'm complete. He mentioned to me that it's no big deal (in fact, no deal! haha) so that's good to know.

I met someone there too who had double jaw surgery, after my check up the ortho brought me to another patient who was there for braces adjustment, he talked to me about his double jaw surgery (LeForte I and BSSO). He had the surgery in October and the only thing he has now is a tiny little nerve sensation in corner of the top lip! That's pretty good considering if you were to get full nerve feeling back it could take a year!

I got the date for my braces too, May 4th! Wow. the process is moving quite along I must say!

Friday, 4 March 2011

Cheek Infection Gone! Also, Nose Breathing is AMAZING!

So, as the O.S (Orthodontic Surgeon) mentioned, the swelling went down a lot within the 48 hours of the antibiotic being administered. By 72 hours, it was essentially gone however I finished my prescribed 7 day dose of antibiotics. I'm happy to report that it's still all nice and settled! *knock on wood*.

Also, yesterday I had a stuffed nose so I decided to lightly blow it, and it felt great to do so. Please note that I did it lightly, it's not really recommended to blow your nose until at least three weeks after surgery, and while it was three weeks I'm still very cautious. Gross alert, when I blew my nose lots of old, dark blood-clot like blobs came out, which is a good thing! The blood clots I was told is a good breeding ground for bacteria, and could have actually been possibly a reason as to why I had a cheek infection too.

Before the surgery, I could breathe through my nose but it was difficult on various days, I should say most days. Now, after SARPE, breathing through my nose has been effortless! I LOVE IT!

Wednesday, 23 February 2011

A Little Cheek Infection

I am 15 days post op of a SARPE and three wisdom teeth extractions; since day 1, my swelling has been going down down down down down. In fact, yesterday morning, it looked as if it was *all* gone. Literally, you could hardly see anything at day 14. At 2PM I felt a pain that I could describe as a mild toothache, but I thought nothing of it as supposedly a small cavity was developing there. At 6:30PM though, my right side of my face was all swollen.

I called the OS's night line and spoke with him, he requested me in the office the coming morning. I figured it would be better this morning but it was still still there, if not slightly larger.

I went in and his diagnosis was an infection in the cheek. Not really sure how that happened as I have been brushing and rinsing with the prescribed mouthwash and saline, but what can you do. They administered some antibiotics via IV as well as provided me with a prescription. They say it should subside in a few days, I'm hoping it will! It's just the one side of my face at least, not both :)

Wednesday, 16 February 2011

The First Post, The First Step Towards a Better Functioning Jaw!

Hey what's up, I'm Nathaniel!

Note: I started to write up this post before I did my first surgery, but I finished it and posted it after my first surgery, I'm just posting it as a separate entry simply to keep the blog organized.

Hi everyone, my name is Nathaniel and this is my blog about Jaw Surgery. Before committing to this, I read other blogs and they helped me greatly in my decision, so I am hoping that by documenting my journey it may help someone else in the future.

Ever since my early teen years I contemplated about getting Jaw Surgery. In the beginning, I really wanted to get it done because of being so self-conscious about my smile. I didn’t really like it, I wanted to hide it wherever possible.

As I grew older though, it didn’t bother me that much at all. I now smile in photos even though in my opinion it didn’t look that great. The reasons now changed more from psychological and appearance to oral health and function. At the time of this writing, I am 22 years old, and although I don’t have oral health problems now, I could very well have them in the future. Since I have an open bite, minor cross bite, and minor under bite, I could easily have teeth degradation and jaw problems like TMJ.

Function wise, I can speak though I do have a little lisp at times, I sometimes spit when I talk, and I can’t really eat a slice of pizza or a burger without making a crazy mess by yanking the cheese off the slice or ripping out tomatoes and lettuce from a burger due to my front teeth not able to bite through it. This all happens because of my open bite, which basically means my front teeth don't close over each other.

So, what's ahead of me?
From multiple consultations with several orthodontists and oral surgeons, all have said I need the following:
  • All of my wisdom teeth extracted
  • Expansion of my upper arch (top jaw) by SARPE (Surgically Assisted Rapid Palette Expansion)
  • LeForte I to move my top jaw a little forward
  • BSSO to move my bottom jaw a little backward
  • Potential Genioplasty to balance out the profile after LeForte I and BSSO
  • Braces to align the teeth
Reading all the above, it may seem like a lot of stuff to do, but in reality it's only two surgery dates and some braces. The first surgery will have the wisdom teeth extraction and the SARPE, then a year or so after that the LeForte I, BSSO, and Genioplasty would happen all at the same time. Braces would be in between the first and second surgery, then for about six months after the second surgery. So, all in all you could say it will be a little over 1.5 years for everything to be complete; and the year between the two surgeries isn't necessarily medically related but more so to hospital scheduling surprisingly enough.

I think that's a good first post! There will be more to come!