My First Day in Braces

experiences of ArchWired readers

 Marilee from Maryland

First, thanks to the people who maintain this website and to everyone who posts here. is an amazing resource and strengthened my resolve to finally take the leap and get braces.

I'm 32 years old. Like so many of the other writers here, I always wanted to have my teeth fixed but there was never time or money and, truth be told, I was nervous. But I finally decided to do it. I have a severe overbite and gaps on top, and everything is pretty crowded and crooked on the bottom.

The braces went on yesterday and I've been taking Motrin steadily, which has helped with the pain and pressure. The braces really aren't so bad. I had to put wax on one bracket that was rubbing my cheek raw. That's about it. The main problem for me is the fixed biteplate attached to the roof of my mouth and blocking off my top front teeth. Apparently, this device is used in cases of deep overbite. It prevents you from knocking the brackets off your bottom teeth. In my case, it also prevents me from closing my mouth (can't do it) and biting and talking properly. It is truly miserable. I have to wear it for four to six months. Send a little luck my way that it's closer to four than six. On top of the biteplate, I also have a canker sore on my tongue. I think the correct scientific term for all of this is 'Mouth of Misery'.

My other problem is flossing. The orthodontist's office gave me a blue threader thing and some floss. It was impossible to use. Perhaps not impossible but very awkward and unpleasant and ineffective. I clicked around this website and read about Crest Glide Threader Floss so I am going to buy some of those. Hopefully, they'll work better. Since eating and brushing and flossing are such hassles, I think I'll just stare longingly at some Oreo cookies and pretend that I'm eating them.

So - braces aren't bad at all but biteplates are horrible. Getting the bands and brackets on was relatively quick and painless and, aside from pressure and some cheek soreness, the braces are fine. I now wish I'd gotten them sooner.

Good luck to everyone out there. If you want to do it and you can afford it, go for it. A healthy smile isn't just about looks. To be honest, I had gotten used to how my teeth looked and it didn't bother me as much as it did when I was younger. But what did bother me a lot was the fact that my bite never matched up when I ate and that my teeth were moving and wearing down in funny ways. I hope the braces will fix all of that, and the aesthetic angle will be nice, too.

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