Life with braces as an adult: elastics top to bottom
It's that time again - an update on my adult experience wearing braces. If you are thinking of getting braces do feel free to ask me any questions in the comments and I'll get back to you. These blog posts are a way of me documenting each tightening appointment and tracking the change in my teeth from before to after. Does a brace tightening hurt? Read on to find out! I also struggled to find many blog journeys about wearing a brace as an adult, so I hope they are helpful if you're thinking about having a brace.
On Thursday 23rd March 2017 I had my 8th brace tightening for my top teeth (5th for the bottom). It was also my brace year anniversary on the 10th March – how quickly has that gone? I can’t believe I’ve been wearing an adult brace for a whole year already. I also can’t imagine myself without a brace now as I’m so used to it, it’s just become a part of me. Not that I don’t want it off – I cannot wait for that day!
Before this appointment I’d started to feel a little disheartened about the progress. Nothing noticeable had changed in my last two appointments. The huge lateral incisor gap they are making for a false tooth had been stuck at 5mm for two appointments even with elastics trying to pull it across. It needs to be 7mm. I’m glad to say it’s now 6mm, so has finally moved another 1mm this whole year! Yay! My orthodontist is confident she can take an impression at the next appointment so I can have a temporary false tooth whilst I wear the brace and stop feeling so gappy!
The peg tooth and its gap is now 7mm and the peg tooth needs to move into the middle of the gap instead of being at the side where it is now. I’m not sure if she’s trying to move this yet, I must remember to ask next time as it hasn’t moved if she is. It needs to be in the middle in preparation for a veneer which will sit better if it’s central. I feel a bit gappy on the peg tooth side too, but not as bad as the other side!
The gap at the bottom front had not moved at all in 3 appointments. She’d put elastics on 6 teeth to try to move them altogether, but did say last time this might be a bit adventurous. So in this appointment she put elastics just on the front two and OH MY GOODNESS! The gap is almost gone! It literally halved in size within 24 hours. I can tell too as OWEEEEE! My front bottom teeth were super sensitive for around 3 days. That feeling has died off now, but hopefully they’ll continue to pull together and gap be gone.
The bottom wire was changed for the thickest wire! Yay! So no more wire changes, just tightenings.
The biggie this appointment was elastics TOP to BOTTOM!
So this is a bit different…
I have little hooks on my brace now at the top front for the elastics to slide over. I have to change these elastics every day and take them out for eating and teeth brushing. By changing them every day it means I have a fresh taut pair on, so the pull is constant and I can feel the pressure all the time. Usually the pressure eases and disappears a couple of days after a tightening appointment, but this new type of elastic means the pressure is always there. It’s a minor inconvenience for perfect teeth though and at least it must be doing something! As far as I can remember it’s to improve my bite which is still miles off and this should really speed things up. I hope so!
I’m still feeling miles off perfect teeth. They look an absolute mess to me still, but I guess it’s hard to imagine what the end result will be when I have so many gaps and a peg tooth at the front. I hope once I get a false tooth I’ll start to see what the end result will look like! They are so different to where I began a year ago, so I must remind myself of that.