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Photos of Paolo from Guatemala

Paola "Porolita" is 20 years old. She decided to get braces because she never really liked her smile. Paola says, "My lower teeth are crowded, and even though my upper teeth are not 'so bad', my bite is pretty deep. I started preventive orthodontia when I was younger, but didn't finish because my parents divorced and my mom couldn't afford the treatment. 

"Now that I have a job I saved some money and I decided to get my braces. Right now I only have metal braces on my upper teeth, my ortho said I might need to use a bite plate in a few months when my lower braces are put on. I'll be in braces for 24 months.

"I got my braces with no bands and no spacers (woo-hoo!!). The photo, (which is kind pf blurry, sorry about that) was taken a week after I got my braces on. I decided to wear white ligatures to make them "less noticeable" since I wear glasses... I was feeling kind of ashamed, but not anymore, now I love my braces. At my first adjustment (7/10) I changed to blue ligatures. 

"I've been in braces for 1 1/2 months now.... Ill send another photo as soon as I see improvement in my teeth."


Paola says, "Well, after 6 months I finally got my bottom braces. Thankfully there was no need to wear a bite plate, at least so far because my ortho didn't mention it at all.

"The only thing that bothered me the first days is that I can't bite all the way down anymore. The curious thing is, that I stared at the mirror trying to find out why and I couldn't. My braces do not "bump" on my upper teeth, but I still can't bite down correctly. My left molars don't fit the way they used to, only the right side. My ortho says it is because both of my dental arches do not fit, but that this will be corrected.

"In the picture, it seems like I didn't have a bracket in my left canine, but I do. it is just that it is on the side, because my teeth needs to turn around to its correct position. You can see it if you look closely. 1 month since I got my bottom braces, and I have already seen progress, my incisors moved. Thank God!"


Paola says, "Check out my new pics! On my 10th adjustment, I got an elastic from end to end, as you can see in the picture. It goes from my right upper canine to the lower left canine. It is intended to make my "midline" fit, since my bite is a little crossed now that my lower dental arch is way smaller than the top one. The elastic didn't let me open my mouth too much, and I could only take it off to eat.

"It was real pain all first 2 weeks, then I got used to it... and to the fact that people stared at my mouth trying to figure out what was that elastic thing doing there!!! Oh well, anyway I am glad to see that my lower teeth are straightening up so fast."

Paola's teeth without the elastic.


This picture was taken just before my two front top teeth where "re-bracketed;" a misplacement of the two brackets made both teeth move slightly apart from each other. So my ortho removed both brackets and replaced them slightly angled. The result is noticeable.


Here is Paola's most recent photo, April 2005. She says, "After I had my two front teeth "re-bracketed" the small gap that had opened between them just disappeared. (you can see in the other pictures) I am close to get my braces removed. I have my appointment set for April 27th to get my top braces off. My ortho says the bottoms will be on for one more month after that. After I had my two front teeth "re-bracketed" the small gap that had opened between them just disappeared.

"I am really happy with my teeth the way they look. I can't wait to see how they will look without the braces on!"


In late May 2005, Paola got her top braces off. She says, "Here are my top teeth, naked at last!! I only got my top braces off for now. But the mold for my bottom retainer is already made. I hope I get them off by next week.

"It was a little bit hard for me to get used to the Hawley retainer, because I sounded really funny. I can speak normally now. It is incredible how you need to wear your retainer RELIGIOUSLY each and every day. One day I forgot it and left it in my mother's car, and the next day when I tried it on... it hurt!! My teeth felt loose and the pain just like I had an adjustment. Never leave your retainer anywhere else but in your mouth... that is my advice. FOR REAL!!"


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