Saturday, 18 November 2006

Photos - Adjustment 10

The beginning ... Day 1 - August 2005
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15 Months later - November 2006
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Wednesday, 15 November 2006

Week 67 - Adjustment 10

Uppers ... No change!

Lowers ... A new powerchain over all teeth. My ortho used the purple (grape) coloured one I bought from an ortho supply company. He said the colour was great, but the quality not as good as what he usually buys ... damn! I really like this dark blue shade of purple!

I got new elastics ... a smaller size - 1/4" diameter and named Blue ... another very original name :-( I'm to continue wearing them in Class III fashion for 23 1/2 hours a day! Ortho said my treatment is all about elastics now. ... gotta admit I'm not totally sure what that comment meant!

I asked about the biting surface of my upper right incisor and my ortho said that prior to getting braces off, I'll be having x-rays to check where the roots of my teeth are. If they need adjusting, bends will be made in the archwire. After the brackets are removed, any groves, or pieces that need correcting will be smoothed out.

My ortho said he wants to see me again before Christmas ... so have another appointment in five weeks ... that is a short break ... so hope all goes well! Maybe my uppers will be in front of my lowers by then ... now that would be awesome!!!

Photos to follow!

Friday, 22 September 2006

Photos - Adjustment 9

New bracket ... tooth on right of pic
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Week 59 - Adjustment 9

Uppers ... bracket replaced. My ortho put an InVu ceramic bracket on my left upper lateral. It's even smaller than the 3M clarity bracket that was on their before ... and very nice!

Then replaced the old partial powerchain and ligs with new purple ones ... much better!

Lowers ... a powerchain was put to link all teeth together. This was when I discovered the sad news that my ortho only has three colours of powerchains, clear, silver and bright blue. I so wanted either purple or black ... so went with boring silver, since I've been wearing bright blue for a while now and they quickly change to sea green due to all the curry I eat.

He was happy with my elastic progress and I'm to continue with 23 1/2 hr a day wear, with my only release being to clean my teeth! He said to expect things to happen soon, as now that my lowers are all in the one powerchain, the elastics will be pulling them all, not just working on the teeth they're hooked to!

He said goodbye and wished me a great time in Fiji! Next appointment to be in eight weeks.

... this was a hard adjustment as my head just wasn't in the room. I'd been listening to Steve Irwin's farewell at Aussie Zoo and I was still feeling totally shattered when my ortho's assistant called me in for treatment. I wish I'd had a good cry before that, a I think that would have helped. Instead I cried for quite a while on the drive home, and then again when I checked out the video coverage online!

... I've decided that at my next appointment ... which I think is mid November, I'll take a copy of the ordering details for powerchains from an Australian dental supplier and ask my ortho if I can order a couple of rolls so that I can have purple and black ... or purple and something!

... apart from that ... I can already feel and see movement. My uppers keep clashing with my lowers ... now it's been a long time since that's happened, so the powerchains and the elastics are doing a great job! A little sensitivity with my front lower four ... but nothing to stop me eating or take a pain med!

... will take photos soon ... as there has already been changes! Amazing!

Thursday, 21 September 2006

Photo - Adjustment 8

These are after my eighth adjustment and show my new addition ... class III elastics ... say hello to Mr Green ... a really deep and meaningful name for elastics. They're one of the bigger sizes ... 5/16" (7.9 mm)!

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I did increase my salt rinses for a few days, as Mr Green was/is rubbing on the inside of where my lips come together ... strangely this is only happening on my left side.

Week 53 - Adjustment 8

Uppers ... no change
Lowers ... upgraded archwire and new purple ligs

Plus ... class III elastics to start work on my bite.

The elastics go from my upper second molars to my lower canine and are to be worn 24 hours a day! Sh*t ... I thought there would be some time off ... but nope ... my ortho said I was to wear them to eat, drink, dance, party etc! Think I must have told my ortho more than I'd planned to about my life ... He did add I could have them out to clean ... but that was all! He then added that I only needed to change them if they broke or once a day!

Then he gave me my first bag ... and I was already wondering will it be Tom, Tony, Charlie, George, Fred or ... ... ... well guess who I got ... Green! Damn and blast ... my elastics are known by the colour of their bag ... joy oh joy ... it's really not going to be so easy to develop a relationship with Green, like I thought I might with Charlie or Tom ... but thems the breaks!

They're one of the larger diameter elastics ... 5/16" (7.9 mm) ... and I'm already grateful for that ... as they are annoying the inside of my mouth, just by where my lips meet ... and they do feel tight!

I'm pleased I've continued with the salt rinses every morning ... and I'm going to increase them for a few days just to make sure I survive my early days with Green!

My ortho said my uppers had to be put on hold for at least another six weeks, as my bite needs work before my uppers can progress. Frustrating, but he's the boss and I trust him. Next appointment he's planning to put a loopchain (powerchain) on my lowers ... which I'm looking forward to, as that will close the gap that's reopened since I had the brackets added at my 7th adjustment!

Ok ... I'm off to spend some quality time with Green ... and hopefully we can work out that I'm the boss!

Saturday, 5 August 2006

Week 52 - 12 Months - 1 year

It's one year!

Totally can't believe it, coz I really don't feel like I've had these things on my teeth for 12 months ... but my diary tells the tale ... the tale of how I waited over two decades for fear of ... well I really don't know ... but something I now know was totally unfounded!

How long have I got left? I've no idea ... I never felt the need to ask how long my treatment would be, and I suspect I won't be asking until I feel it's getting near time. I know it'll be over when my treatment is finished ... until then ... well I'll keep taking photos and posting them on here! I was told I could take two years to pay my account off ... but whether than really means much, I've no idea!

Here's a collage of my journey so far!

Photos Adjustment 7

Here's one that shows the new brackets on my molars. After all I've read about banding molars, I'm so pleased my ortho doesn't see the need for bands and uses buccal brackets instead! This photo also shows my open bite and cross bite.
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Another pic of my right side! I took this one to see how my teeth are connecting, coz it feels like they aren't, and that photo does confirm what I suspected ... all in the name of progress ... right!
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Left side! Damn having to get more brackets! The gap between my lateral and canine has opened again ... guess this is why it's so necessary to wear retainers to keep teeth in place, as this opened within a couple of days of the powerchain being removed! Note to self ... wear your retainers if you don't want to travel this path again!
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Front view of my bite! I just took another angle to check which (if any teeth) were touching! I'm sure this will be a good one to refer to when Con returns to fixing my bite!
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Week 47 - 11 Months - Adjustment 7

I have been slack and not kept this journal up-to-date ... I apologise for having a life ... and a wonderful one at that!

Here's the info for my seventh adjustment!

Dr C is still concerned with my bite, and after putting three more brackets on my lowers ... now every tooth is bracketed, he said I was going back a wire strength ... stronger than the one before my current one, but not as strong as my current one! Hope that all makes sense. He said this is necessary to get my lower back teeth to align ... damn ... that stinks of being back in phase one.

Anyway ... it didn't take long for the new brackets to be attached, and nice new purple ligs on all my lowers. My uppers were ignored ... Dr C said he can't continue work on my bite until the lowers get sorted ... so here's hoping that will happen over the next six weeks!

I asked a few questions, and Dr C gave me the container my brackets come out of ... they are ... Nu-Edge Cobalt Chromium Brackets ... produced by TP Orthodontics Inc. I'm guessing it's not hard to guess what I've been googling tonight ... and very interesting it is to!

Also on the container it states ... Single Use Only ... but I have no idea why ... interesting ...

Saturday, 20 May 2006

Photos - Adjustment 6

Compare the difference in size of the gaps ... wow where have they gone ... guess what ... I don't care ... but they've definitely changed heaps!

Love this blue powerchain ...
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The wayward one has the blue lig in a figure eight ... pulling it to the archwire!
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Week 41 - Adjustment 6

Had my 6th adjustment today ... and all is well ...

Dr C has coloured powerchains ... so that was good news! I now have a bright blue powerchain (7 loop), upper left to right front central. It's been moved across one. He said he's doing this to bring my midline close to where it should be, as it was such a long way off.

My lowers ... not so good ... my 'wayward' one got told off ... it's not done what it should, and as a result the only thing to change down there, is a new lig put on it, in a figure eight to try and give it the message to get in to line!

Dr C's still concerned about my bite ... particularly on my right side. He said he'll be putting more brackets on there next time, as he wants to get more work done in that area!

I asked him how things are going He gave me his gorgeous grin and said 'great' ... I looked at him and asked if he was sure ... and he said there's more challenges ahead, but in his job that's what makes life exciting, and that I was not to be concerned about them, coz that was his job! Ok ... I'm really cool about that!

Next adjustment in six weeks. He likes to see his patients every six weeks when they have powerchains on, as he feels powerchains have performed there best within that time!

... so guess that means the lower 'wayward' one has held up progress again ... as the powerchain will have been on their 12 weeks by next appointment! Damn it ... but hey ... who said this was going to be a straight forward journey ...

Need to add ... that there's been quite a lot of changes since my last adjustment!

The powerchains have really moved my upper teeth ... I now have a gap between the two in the front ... unreal ... don't think that's ever happened before! Plus the upper and lower gaps have gotten heaps smaller! Is good to finally see some obvious changes after so long! :-)

Thursday, 6 April 2006

Photos - Adjustment 5

This pic shows the combination of blue ligs (dark and light), with the tooth coloured power chain. These photos were taken a few hours after my appointment ... so the tooth coloured chains are still looking a nice shade!

Also there appears to be 'light' between my two upper front teeth. The amazing thing about that, is they were still slightly overlapping prior to my appointment!
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This photo shows the two gaps on the left side of my mouth that need closing.
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The 'wayward' lateral ... is the one on the lower arch with the dark blue lig. It's tried to get into alignment by coming though right side first. The powerchain is connected to the tooth to the left of it to make space for it to line up properly!
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Wednesday, 5 April 2006

Week 35 - Adjustment 5

Well I’m back from adjustment number 5 … just a few days past my eight month anniversary!

Dr C was concerned that the lower lateral was still not in line and had turned slightly while trying to line up.

He was also concerned about some changes in my bite. My top teeth are meeting/biting to the back of my lower teeth … still on the top, but to the back of the top … if that makes any sense.

He decided to go ahead with new wires for both upper and lower, as he felt it was time to up the work effort. I was thrilled to be getting the chance to choose new ligs and asked for dark and light blue … which I’m thrilled with. Dr C was surprised I changed from purple, as I was in my usual purple clothes ... but I feel like I've been waiting way to long for this ... so I was happy to be different for a change. Ok ... I know blue and purple are in the same family ... but it felt good to do something different! Have to add ... it feels really strange when the ligs and archwires are out ... my teeth felt kinda vunerable ...

Dr C was still poking round and making a few comments … then said it was time to try something else and asked his assistant for one six loop chain and one seven loop chain! My mind was doing flips, then I realised the ‘loop chains’ he was referring to would be power chain!

The upper one is connected from the back bracket hook to the front left central incisor and is to start moving my upper teeth to the right. Dr C said I’ll get a gap in between my upper front teeth, but not to worry, as he’ll close that when the time is right. He’s hoping the gap between left upper central and lateral will close. I can tell you one thing … it’s already trying to! I can’t believe how quickly my upper front teeth have developed a small gap … after having been partly lapped for so many years … this feels weird!

The lower ‘loop chain’ is connected from the back bracket hook on the left to the right central incisor. The plan here is that these teeth will move to the left and let the 'wayward' lateral have some space so that it can come into alignment and straighten at the same time. I can’t feel it yet … but I’m hoping I will before long!

As with all good news … there has to be some bad stuff … damn it! The ‘loop chains’ are tooth coloured … shit! I’d already picked the colours for the ligs … and never thought that Con wouldn’t do the same coloured thing for the ‘loop chain’ … well it will be yellow tomorrow … coz guess who’s having chick pea curry (with plenty of turmeric) for tea?

I’m disappointed about the colour of the ‘loop chain’, but I’m not disappointed to have one!

I am so looking forward to loads of changes! Also so far ... no real discomfort. I can feel a little pressure from the powerchain working on my front upper tooth ... but that's only when I bite my teeth together! Here's hoping that's how it stays!

PS … my lower right back bracket came off during my adjustment today, but Dr C said it could stay off for now, as there’s more important things that need dealing with in my mouth!

PPS ... I'm going to take some pics shortly ... so will post them when I get those organised!

Sunday, 12 March 2006

March 2006 - Seven Months

Finally the photos I took at my seven month anniversary and put together as a collage ... and I can see movement!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Seven months of storing pics has been worth it ... I feel so much better now I've put these photos together ... wow ... it's great to see movement and not just feel and believe that it's happening!

Thursday, 2 March 2006

Hygienist Appointment - 1 March 2006

I had my first hygienist appointment ... and it went really well.

My hygienist said I was her best ortho patient ... and man did my head swell. She said she wished all her ortho patients had to pay for their own treatment, as she reckons théy'd look after their oral hygiene a lot better if they did.

After a check and a quick clean I had the fluoride treatment. It was a minty gel and while I was sitting up, she applied it with cottonbuds to the surfaces of my teeth. It was left for one minute and then she suctioned it off and said not to eat or drink for 30 minutes. Felt good, tasted and smelled excellent!

I asked about using Colgate toothpaste with baking soda and peroxide ... and she said it's a good toothpaste ... no problem that she's heard of and that toothpaste does not whiten teeth on its own.

I asked if I should be doing anything else ... she said no! I asked when I should come back to see her ... and she said after seeing my dentist in six months time! Wow ... head still swelling!

I went to pay ... and was told the price had been discounted by a quarter due to so little work being required ... head still swelling!

I managed to squeeze out the Dental Clinic door ... it took a bit of effort ... but I made it ... head still swelling!

I got out to the carpark and had a look at the size of my cars door ... I was really concerned how I was going to fit my still swelling head in there ... it really is good to hear such positive comments from professionals!

I'm thrilled that the extra effort I've been putting in each night with my OTT cleaning regime has been worth it!

PS My hygienist laughed when I told her that the reason I'm OTT with my oral hygiene is I'm scared of being told off by an ortho that's younger than me!

Dentist Visit - 8 February 2006

I had my first dental check up since getting braces ... and I was told I'm very good ... wow ... I was just so excited! It's been about eight months since I'd last seen my dentist and I was hoping it would be a non event!

My dentist asked about what it was like having braces, how I coped with the cleaning etc and added that the few adults he's seen with braces have had excellent oral hygiene ... geepers so that means no slacking now! Told him the only thing that bugs me is eating/cleaning ... he laughed when I said that I wasn't giving it up ... especially the chocolate!

When he'd finished my check up, he said I had to make an appointment with the hygienist for a clean and that my ortho ... had requested I have a fluoride treatment once every six months. Ok ... I was so impressed that he was reading a letter from my ortho and that communication between different/related professions in different places was working ... I left without asking what this is ...

Now of course I'm wanting to know.

I'm thrilled about the communication though ... love it professionals work together!

Monday, 20 February 2006

Week 28 - Adjustment 4

I had my fourth adjustment on 15 February 2006.

It was basically a non event ... funny how the last few have been like that!

The assistant prepared all the stuff for Dr C to replace the bracket that had come off the right lower second premolar, but when Dr C had a look he decided to leave it off. He said there was a filling on the side of that tooth and he was surprised the bracket had remained put for as long as it had. He then moved the archwire back to the right, as it had slipped to the left and was no longer in the tube on the back molar.

He then changed two ligs ... put a new one on the 'wayward' lower lateral and on the lower left second premolar ... which had gotten a figure eight at my last appointment, and is now back to a regular round the bracket pattern.

Dr C said he'd been hoping to up the archwires, but since the wayward tooth was still out of alignment I'd have to wait till my next adjustment in seven weeks - on 5 April 2006, for that to 'hopefully' happen! Oh well ... I've just gotta find some patience!

The strange thing is ... for two days after my appointment both back molars on the lowers ached ... I'm guessing this is because of the archwire having slipped and now being pulled back. The wayward one has moved a little ... but still has over six weeks to get into place ... It will HAPPEN!

Wednesday, 8 February 2006

January 2006

We had an awesome Christmas and New Year! Our Christmas Eve was particularly great as our family met with one of our nephews and we had dinner together at Darling Harbour. We'd not seen our nephew for over 11 year ... so it was a fantastic time.

New Year was wild in Albury in NSW ... we had a fantastic party and celebrated first for Fiji, then New Zealand, then round the states of Australia ... doing our best to remember who is and isn't on daylight saving etc. At 3 am we decided we'd done enough celebrating and found out beds!


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