My First Day in Braces

experiences of ArchWired readers

Vicki from the Texas


I am 41 and recently got my braces.  When I was a child, my folks could not afford them.  As a young adult, I could not afford them.  I have wanted braces for years but was always too chicken or too vain to do it.  I even went through the mode casting once about 10 years ago but chickened out.  I finally made the decision that while I am employed and have insurance I might as well do it. 

My issue on the top is an overbite that I feel looks like a horse when I laugh.  Others tell me it does not but that is how I perceive my looks.  The lower is crowded.  With these two problems you can see I have too many teeth for my mouth.  What did that mean before braces…extractions.  Speaking to a chicken for just putting braces on you can imagine my dismay when I heard I had to have 4 teeth pulled.  I decided as long as I was comatose and had an IV drip I would be ok.  Step One done.

The next step was to get the spacers which basically feels like you have a piece of meat stuck in between your teeth for a week.  3 of the 4 spacers I had were rubber’ish but the fourth was metal.  It was quite uncomfortable but I survived.

The actual placement of the brackets and braces on my teeth were fine.  The pressure is tremendous but after a week that subdues.  My greatest pain was from the brackets.  There is a metal piece on the inside of the tooth that caused terrible havoc on my tongue.  I could not eat, drink, or swallow without cutting my tongue.  I would wake up in pain in the night, I guess after I had swallowed.  I ended up putting wax on it and after a week realized I could not go through putting wax on and off every time I ate for 2 years.  I went the ORTHO and he bent the metal and I am much better now.  This is a bit of a problem though with my love life in that the metal is still quite sharp and hurts my partner. 

I have had them on 3 weeks now and I know I made the right choice.  I am still embarrassed when I meet people but am getting better with that.  Keeping them clean is a hassle so I just don’t eat as many meals which is good for my weight anyway.  I look forward to seeing more movement and seeing those holes where the extractions were removed fill with my teeth as they move back.  Other than the first week…I think it has not been all that bad.

So many people my age say they are too old.  I tell them I have at least another 40 years with these teeth and I want them to be straight. 

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