Braces Removal Stories

when the braces finally come off

Brandy's Story

Brandy is turning 18 this month (Happy Birthday!) She had been in braces for 3 years and has been through jaw surgery. 

Brandy says, "Since I got jaw surgery last June, I still have a very gummy smile, which will be corrected this summer (HOPEFULLY). Smiling big really shows it, so that is the reason why my smiles aren't very big. All you can see are my top gums and my teeth, and not the bottoms. My surgeon says this is normal for jaw surgery patients and it can be corrected by cutting tissue and sort of "rearranging" it.

My gummy smile is due to having high lips. Now that I've gotten my surgery and my teeth are now touching, they have moved together, but my lips have remained in their conditions. You can see more info here. //

The jaw surgury has changed my appearance dramatically. Before, I had an open bite in which my top teeth didn't touch the bottoms. You could stick a thumb in between the top and bottom teeth. Now they are touching perfectly thanks to that painful surgery I've gone  through. My bottom jaw used to protrude back further, and the surgery boosted it forward."

You can see what I've had done by checking out this site: // I had an open bite with a combination of Retrognathia. I currently have an implant in my chin as well as metal plates inside my cheeks. I wonder if I can pass security checks in airports? I'll find out this summer!

Brandy's Braces Removal

On March 5th 2004, I went into my orthodontist office for my regular appointment, and the doctor says, "Brandy, open your mouth! Now close! Open again! Close!" I was wondering why he was asking me this. I thought maybe this was a good sign. It was then, when he told me the good news that my braces would come off in 2-3 weeks. My face lit up, and I began smiling. I couldn't wait until I got home so I could tell everybody! First thing I did after I got home was call my friend, and she was very happy for me. It was then, I began a countdown on my calendar and got even more excited as the day approached. I told everyone! I was going to keep it a secret, but I couldn't keep it in. I was like, "I'm getting my braces off in 2 weeks!" (Editor's note: Brandy had been in braces for three years).

March 30th was the day I've been waiting for. I stayed home from school that day since my appointment was early in the morning. When I got there, the secretary at the check in/out desk was like, "Brandy! Are you ready? Today is the day! Aren't you excited!?" I shook my head yes and had a very big smile on my face. I ran to the back, and brushed my teeth for the very last time having braces, then I sat down and waited for my turn. It seemed like such a long wait. As I was waiting, I couldn't stop shaking and I almost screamed since I was so excited. No wonder I couldn't sleep the night before!

Finally, they called me and I walked over to my chair. They brought over retainer color samples, and I picked out my colors. I picked sparkly purple for the top, and sparkly blue for the bottom. Very pretty! I loved knowing I had the option of having glitter on my retainers and I took advantage. After picking my colors, they lowered my chair, put my head back, and began the braces removal process!

The nurse began pulling on the bands and they popped off after wiggling lightly. A wire began poking me in the back, but since they were taking my braces off it wouldn't be poking me any longer! She called the doctor over and he removed my braces. He didn't even take off the power chain! He just pulled my braces off with no problem. He popped each bracket off one by one. Just a little tug on each tooth and it was no problem at all! As soon as he took my braces off, I pulled myself up, grabbed the mirror and looked at my teeth. First thing I thought was, "Oh my gosh!" I still had clumps of cement from where the brackets used to be on my teeth, and I ran my tongue over the front of my teeth and it tasted disgusting! They yelled at me and told me to lay back down. "Brandy! Sit back down, we're still not done yet! We need to get the cement and glue off!"

So, I lay back down, and they begin removing the cement and glue. In my opinion, this was the most painful part of the whole procedure. She warned me first, "Brandy, now I'm removing the glue and cement. Its going to feel like your teeth are going to fall out, but don't worry, they won't!" It consisted of scraping and it felt like she was going to pull my teeth out, but I knew that wouldn't happen since she warned me and that's what I expected. This was pretty time consuming, because she had to do each individual tooth and she had to make sure she got all of it off. Then after all that painful scraping, she polished my teeth. She put this fluoride stuff on my teeth, and used a spinny tool to spread it around. I remember biting down and hearing this crackling sound as I was biting on it, and it didn't taste very good.

"All Done! You can go rinse and brush now!" I walked over to the mirror, and brushed my "braceless" teeth for the first time. Then after brushed, I looked my teeth without braces for the first time in 3 years. I was really happy and couldn't stop smiling! I took that time and took advantage to floss my teeth. Lets say, it was a lot easier without all that "stuff" on my teeth.

After I brushed, they told me to go sit back down in my chair. Now its was time for those dreaded impressions for the retainers! "Ugh!" I thought. I'm not good when it comes to these things, since I tend to gag. It really wasn't as bad as I thought though. They told me to breathe through my nose, not my mouth, and that is what I did. It worked rather well and I didn't gag once. In fact, they had to redo the top twice since the first one didn't come out very well. After this process, I asked to brush my teeth once again and they let me do so. Getting the impressions were a lot easier without my braces now that I didn't have to take the time to pick all the "gunk" out of my brackets. That was a pain to do. After freshening up, I sat back down in the chair and they brought out a "Congrats" balloon as well as a bag of "sticky" and "hard" candy. Things you shouldn't eat with my braces on! That was nice of them to think about their patient who has been suffering for 3 years with "stuff" on their teeth. Does wonders doesn't it?

I walked over to my mom with a big smile and she looks at my teeth. All the nurses and dental assistants congratulated me. I felt so happy. Then we walked up the front desk and made my appointment to pick up my retainers a week later. I walked out of the ortho office "braces free" that day feeling happy. 3 years of pain really came a long way.

A week later (4/6/04), I had my appointment after school to pick up my retainer. I was an hour early to my appointment so I had to sit and wait for a while. I brushed my teeth of course, and waited patiently. Finally, they had some free space and took me in. First, the assistant took X-rays of my teeth, some pictures, and then she distributed my retainers. I bought 2 different types. The Orthotain which a clear plastic one that fits over your teeth and are invisible. They are just like Invisalign! I also got the Hawley which fits in your mouth and has a metal bar over the front of your teeth. I was asked to wear the Orthotain during the day since its virtually invisible (indeed it is!) and the Hawley at night while I'm sleeping. The assistant showed me how to apply them to my teeth. At first, I didn't really like how they felt, but then I instantly got used to it. I guess it was because I've had braces so long, I just adapted to having something in my mouth again, but only this time its removable. I'm just happy that now I'm able to eat whatever I want again for the first time in 3 years.

I like my retainers. They're cool. Way cooler compared to my braces. I think they feel kind of neat and I enjoy wearing them. At first my speech was bad for a few days, but its getting better and they were also sore at first, but I'm getting used to it. Very neat things must I say, but they are a pain to keep track of. Must I never wrap them in a napkin or lose them since I definitely won't. Trust me, why would I want to lose these things when I love them so much? I could wear them the rest of the life if I wanted to!

Braces were definitely worth this long trip. I'm happy with the results, and I love my new smile. If you're considering getting braces, it's well worth the money, time, and pain, despite being called, "Metal Mouth" and "Braceface".

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