Braces, part III - On they go

I went in for my appointment at 10 (to prepare, I thoroughly brushed, flossed and used mouthwash). The first thing the lady did was remove the spacers. Then I think she polished my teeth. Then came one of the worst parts - putting the metal brackets on my molars. It seemed to take forever for her to find the right size, and every time we tried a new one, she had to shove it on, and I had to bite, bite, bite on something that felt like the backside of a toothbrush. The orthodontist checked her work, and then the brackets had to come off, glue had to be placed on them, and the shoving/biting process repeated. The glue tasted vaguely like cherries; I heard it would be disgusting, but I swallowed very little, so it wasn't bad. Next she dried my teeth and then began placing the brackets. She put the lower right hand side brackets on, and the ortho came back to check. I'm not sure if he didn't like her work or if he normally puts some on himself, but at that point he stayed and finished the bottom half while she did the top. I was happy about that. I mean, although the staff member was very nice, and seemed knowledgeable and competent, I'm paying over $5000, I want some face time with the orthodontist. After the brackets went on, she had me rinse - my mouth felt so strange at this point. It was very scratchy, very dry, unpleasant. I wished at this point I had brought some chapstick or vaseline with me for my lips. I put alot on in the morning, but it wasn't enough. She told me it would feel better once the wires went on.

So, next step was the wires. She placed them in the brackets, cut off the ends, took them out (she said something about soldering the ends, I think?), and then put them in again. She made sure they weren't poking me in the back (thankfully they still aren't), and then tightened the wires. I felt a decent amount of pressure through this process; it was probably the second worst part, but totally bearable. I was done and came out looking like this........

I feel a bit freakish right now, to be honest. :( But I know it'll just take some time... I (and my mouth) will get used to it.

Two things I like so far about this ortho: (1) I can log-in to their website and view all my records, appointment dates, etc; and (2) their staff is very knowledgeable, friendly, and patiently answered all of my questions (and also are very responsive to e-mail). There were a couple points where we had to wait for the ortho to finish with someone else, and the staffer used the time efficiently, going through their "guide to braces" booklet with me, giving me a braces starter kit, and showing me how to use everything inside of it. I know this is probably common practice, but I liked the way she did it.

In short, although I'm not happy with my appearance, I am happy with the way everything was handled by the ortho, and I know this will all be worth it in the end... and I can't wait to have them off!! Only 8-10 months left.

Notes for myself: Eating curry or drinking red wine will stain my bands (yellow for curry, red for the wine). She said anything with dye in it will stain the bands, so I might want to hold off on eating/drinking that stuff until right before the bands are changed. (No more chicken tikka masala?? nooo) I read a website that tomorrow and the next day I will feel like I was "punched in the mouth." I'm hoping that's an exaggeration.


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