Braces at 30: My 12th tightening appointment update (18 months)

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I can’t quite believe it, but I’ve had my brace on for 18 months now!  It feels like a milestone!  And perhaps not the most joyous of milestones as it was predicted I’d need a brace for 18-24 months, so this means the 18 month window has gone out the window!  It’s looking more like 24 months now as there’s still a lot to fix.  We left it a few months to put the bottom brace on as it seemed like less work, but now I think the top is coming together and there still seems to be a lot to do at the bottom.  Perhaps it would have been best to just put them both on at the same time?

I may be wrong though and my orthodontist says sometimes it all falls into place at the end.  I hope so as I am ready to have my mouth back please.  Get this thing off me!

I will be patient though and will wait until everything is as perfect as can be.  There’s no point in spending all this time and money to rush the brace off and not be 100% happy with the outcome.

Since my 11th appointment I haven’t noticed a huge difference.  I can’t tell any difference at the top at all, though a couple of friends and family have remarked how good my teeth are looking, so maybe they have changed.  They definitely look perfectly aligned, but I think because there are so many gaps to the front around my peg tooth and next to the false tooth, I can’t see past these.

Here’s what’s going on:

Braces at 30 My 12th tightening appointment update 18 months before and af


My silly overbite is still 5.5mm, even though I made sure I was wearing those annoying top to bottom elastics most of the time.  Luckily I don’t have to wear them at the moment as I have gone back a wire on the bottom teeth for now.  So we’ll probably come back to this overbite once I have the thick steel on again.

Gaps for false tooth and veneer

The peg tooth and its gaps are 8mm and these need to be 6mm.  The false tooth gap is fine.  I now have a very long elastic across all of the top brace to bring them altogether and close this 2mm.  Then, as far as I know this is everything at the top aside from the overbite.

Gaps at bottom

I’d noticed there was still a gap in the middle of my bottom front teeth.  The teeth had closed at the very top, but were on a slant so there was quite a sizeable space which I could fit a large interdental brush between.  My orthodontist said it could either be the teeth have gone together slightly slanted and not perfectly upright, or the edges of the teeth aren’t straight.  She thinks they have gone together at an angle, like a triangle, so just the top bits have met.  We’ve gone back a step with the wire and she changed it to the last wire to move the teeth into a better position.  Hopefully this will bring them more upright and then we can close this gap for good!  It means the rest of the gaps at the bottom will have to wait for now.

Next steps

Closing gaps and improving overbite seems to be everything there is left to do.  I also need to ask my dentist at what point he’ll do the veneer and bridge.  Some like the retainer to be on for a while first, whereas some might do it sooner.  I’ll see what he has to say, but I hope it’s sooner rather than later or we could be heading over three years before I get the finished result.

My 18th month brace timeline

It’s quite disgusting looking so close at my mouth!  But I loved looking at other people’s photos when I was researching whether to have a brace, so I’ve decided to share mine.  It’s also quite amazing to see the progress.  At this stage, when very little seems to be happening, it’s easy to forget just how awful my teeth were and how they upset me every day.  Seeing this difference makes it all worthwhile and reminds me to be patient!

Braces Timeline Before and After My 12th tightening appointment update 18 m



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  1. Wow big difference from month 10 to month 18! You're so brave having that at 30. Looks loads better ?

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  2. I had braces as a teen, and they perfectly aligned. Since getting hem removed, my teeth started shifting again. I really want to get braces again, but it?s so expensive. Even the first appointment is extortionate. Do you think it?ll be worth it if they?ve shifted, and have the possibility of shifting again?! I don?t really know how it works once you?re older. I?m 30 this month. Thank you. Ps, your teeth look great now! ? Victoria -->> It is expensive! Mine cost £2800 for top and bottom braces, plus I'll need to spend approx £1000 on the false teeth. I was able to pay in instalments which helped spread the cost. I had a lot of issues so had to go down the train track route, but I know there are quicker options which may be cheaper like Invisible Brace and 6 Month Smile, but I don't know the actual cost, so it could be worth finding out. Did you continue to wear a retainer after your brace? I've been told to wear a retainer every evening, or as much as possible, forever more to keep my teeth in place or they might move around after the brace. It's crazy our teeth move about!

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  3. Gemma Massey

    Wow what a difference indeed may I ask were you're teeth hurting you before having braces. For on and off 4 years I'm having severe tooth ache especially in one area plus an over bite which doesn't help. I suffer with epilepsy so fit during the night and perhaps grind but my dentists wont help me my hygienist says I have a hole however my dentist won't listen I was wondering if braces could help me. I get about the patience thing lol I just want mine feel like my own again so any help would be amazing x Victoria's reply -->> Hi Gemma, I'm so sorry to hear your teeth are hurting and I'd expect your dentist to listen! Perhaps try another dentist for a different opinion? My teeth weren't hurting. I started the process because I had two baby teeth where my adult canines should be. One adult canine was next to my front tooth twisted and I have a missing adult lateral incisor. They were a big mess! My baby teeth were a bit wobbly and there was a chance they could fall out, so rather than pay just for false teeth to replace them, I decided to sort my teeth out for good. I really hope you can find a solution for your painful teeth, doesn't sound good at all :( Dentists are supposed to be there to help you with teeth problems, so I'd try another for sure.

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  4. Hi Victoria, I'm in awe and inspired too. I do go to the dentist but all he does is fillings if they're needed (only had two in years now) so mostly he just polishes them every six months but he's never suggested I have a brace or any other treatment to fix the gaps in my upper front teeth. I've never asked about any cosmetic work because I just assumed it would cost too much and I keep telling myself I work on a checkout, I don't own the supermarket :) I'm so proud of you for keeping with this and it is making such a difference, your smile will be fabulous. You're an inspiration, maybe I'll ask the dentist at my next visit what he thinks. Sending heaps of huggles xx Victoria >>> It's definitely costly - my brace has cost £2800 and I'll need to spend a further £1000 on my false teeth when I get to that part in maybe a year. I had to ask my dentist myself about a brace and they referred me to an orthodontist. I think you can look around and choose yourself, but I was happy with the one they referred me to. Luckily the orthodontist let me pay in instalments so it helped to spread the cost :)

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