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Photos of Katrin in Germany

Katrin is a 27-year-old mother of two. This is her second orthodontic treatment. She says, "I was 11 years old when my first treatment started. I had crowded teeth and a very noticeable overbite. My lisp was also very bad." Katrin needed almost 5 years of treatment, involving different removable appliances to correct her bite and her lisp.

At age 18, Katrin had her wisdom teeth extracted. Then at age 19, she visited her Ortho again, because she thought her teeth were moving. He said she should have come in one year earlier, because now she needed full treatment. Katrin didn't want to be in braces for a long time, so she didn't do anything at that point.

Katrin says, "Recently, my 4-year-old son started speech therapy because of his lisp. At this point, my husband asked me if it is possible that my lisp was getting worse. He was right; it was! Then we looked at some pictures from the past 8-10 years, and you could see that my teeth had slowly moved. (It seems I have a tongue thrust habit that must be corrected.)

"In November, 2003 I visited another Ortho and asked him for a treatment plan. He said that it would cost between 3000 and 3500 Euro. He wants to correct the open bite and the crooked teeth on bottom. To correct the tongue habit he would use some kind of little spikes.

"I don't want my teeth to move again after this treatment, so I asked him how he would ensure this.

"He suggested:

  • Possible extraction of two teeth in the upper jaw

  • Brackets on both upper and lower jaw 

  • High-pull headgear for several months

  • Spikes on top and bottom for my tongue habit

  • Retainers for several years, maybe forever…

"Some of this sounds very strange to me… I don’t know if it was the right decision. I hope it was!

"My treatment starts in late January. Impressions and x-rays were made in December. I plan to send more pictures with braces soon."

Katrin's open bite before treatment began, December 2003.


Katrin got headgear in March. As you can see, she doesn't have brackets on all her teeth yet. Her orthodontist wants to move her jaw in a specific way to open up some space, first. Eventually she may have jaw surgery.


Katrin says, "Time to move my teeth! I got my mouth full of brackets last week. Horrible!! The pain in the first two days was heavy. Now I think I can handle it.

"I got brackets top and bottom. The wire is a kind of "thermal reacting wire". I also got a new facebow for my headgear. The good thing is: I didn't have to wear the high-pull strap any longer. The bad thing is: Now I have to wear the new headgear for a minimum of 22 hours a day. I hope I can do it for such a long time a day.

"My ortho told me, that the molars moves a little bit back, but they have to move 3-4 mm more. In a few weeks he'll install the spikes on the top jaw. Because of this he changed the molar rings for the headgear from the 6th to the 7th teeth."

(editor's note: Katrin, I don't envy you, having to suffer with those corrective spikes. I hope your tongue thrust/lisp problem clears up quickly so they don't have to be on for too long!)


Recently, Katrin got her first 2 elastics to move the lower jaw forward. Her ortho also installed three new spacers to help turn the teeth in the right position.


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