Lifestyle

My Brace Journey

I was meant to get braces way back when I was about 12. But for one reason and another it never happened. My options then were to remove two perfect teeth just under my eye teeth, to make room for the eye teeth to grow down into. With the help from me slightly putting pressure on them for about 10mins everyday. Yes ! this is the advice the school dentist gave me…saying it was my only option as I didn’t get the brace. I did what I was advised and thought no more.

Years later I suffered from migraines, neck pain, shoulder pain, for years it was ongoing. It  got so bad I finally went to the Doctor, I was prescribed drugs for migraines. When they didn’t suit I tried more but again the same story…in the end I gave up and resorted to normal pain killers and just ploughing through a three-day migraine which I would have at least one episode of every month. Other issues were the numbness, it began in my left side from my neck right down my arm down to my toes.This was quite frightening and extremely irritating. Back to the Doctor who told me immediately stop taking the pill…and you all know the side effects of long-term pill taking so I was extremely worried thinking have I had a mild stroke or WTF was happening to me or was it all in my head ? I know my own body and know I have a very high pain threshold so NO I wasn’t losing the plot …

I was referred to a consultant and had x-rays and I received steroid injections into my shoulder muscles for months which would temporarily relieve the pain and numbness. But it couldn’t continue like this. I said it to my consultant and he said he would recommend surgery as I had an impingement on my left shoulder which he said was causing the problem and numbness  was due to years of pulling, dragging and toddler carrying on my left hip. I could have cried, I hate hospitals with a passion and try to avoid them at all costs.So this was my worst nightmare. But if it was the only solution to my pain I was willing to get on with it, and I trusted the surgeon. I had the operation and it took me weeks of physio and recovery before I was right again, it was a tough time.

It eased it for a long time and I was delighted, but later Migraines began again and more numbness…I was tested for this that and the other again. I think the doctor has taken most of the blood from my body over the years. I was again referred to yet another Consultant this time at the Private Clinic in the CUH for a Brain scan, CT Scan and an assessment . You can just imagine the thoughts that went through my head waiting for that appointment. D – Day came and off I went had all my scans done. Dear God I nearly lost my life in the CT Machine my head and body was strapped down and I couldn’t move a muscle, dye was injected into me and you could feel it going into my body through my veins, not nice at all and just added to my anxiety. As the machine kicked off and I began to slide in, I panicked STOP! STOP! STOP! I shouted. They did in fairness and they chatted to me about it and got me a glass of water and didn’t proceed until I felt ready. They then spoke to me slowly and reassuringly throughout the whole thing but it felt like an eternity inside that machine. As I wouldn’t be the best in confined spaces anyway , I panicked, so this wasn’t my finest hour.When the machine slid me out and they un-strapped me the relief I felt was unreal and I cried like a baby YES I DID, it was relief that it was over. If your anxious please tell someone and they will help you in any way they can, the team that day were outstanding.They said it happens and to not worry about it at all.

Anyway between the jigs and the reels I was told I needed to take antidepressants, I asked why ANTIDEPRESSANTS I’m not depressed ??? So I did what I was told for a few weeks until my follow-up app. I told the Doctor they didn’t help just kinda made things a little hazy so I stopped taking them. She couldn’t give me an answer after all the tests and scans and I was still none the wiser. She then recommended acupuncture so I tried that for over a year and I must say that it really did help. The numbness went completely after a few sessions. Acupuncture is amazing for so many thing’s and I benefited hugely from the treatment. I also get a massage whenever I can & I also have had several sessions of Physio.

Your probably thinking “Whats all this gotta do with  BRACES ” ? But this is my history before the final conclusion. I went to investigate the price of getting braces and the benefit’s from having the treatment done. I went to three clinics before I was happy. OMG make sure you do your research before spending thousands on your teeth people. The first place I frequented were all about the COSMETIC OUTCOME and how I would look oh and the PRICE which was astronomical.Next up I just didn’t get a good feeling from the clinic and didn’t gel with the Orthodontist at all and when your going to be seeing this person every month for 16/18 mths believe me you need to feel relaxed and feel like you’re in safe hands with someone who is totally passionate and caring and bloody well knows their stuff and some. I finally found that Orthodontist and have begun my BRACE JOURNEY. Where you may well ask well I stayed local.

My Ordodontist David .

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David O’ Meara has established a reputation for Functional Jaw Orthopedics(Non-extraction Orthopedics) both in the locality and nationwide and many patients travel from around the country for both this and TMJD pain holistic treatments.

I had my first app. which was my consultation and I was told what needed to be done, how long it would take and the benefits I would have from having the treatment done and the cost. Every word David said made perfect sense and he spoke with such passion about it you would swear I was one of his own and he was very angered by the fact I had two perfect teeth removed back in the day ..as having them removed has now lead to my jaws caving inwards which is not good. The fact I never had braces when I was a child has led to all my medical issues throughout my life !!! Can you imagine, it was weird but I felt a bit emotional listening to it all… My jaw is also locked and this was causing the migraines. Along with other issues such as pain, numbness, breathing difficulties, nasal congestion,infections being a mouth breather waking up with a dry mouth each and every morning. It was like a light bulb went off and David knew all my medical issues and it’s all down to my TEETH. Better late than never I suppose so I’m delighted to have started my journey.

I got my moulds taken on my second app. and on my next visit I was fitted with my Arch Expander. Here is the mould of my teeth the ones on the L are my top teeth and R are my bottom teeth.The major issue is the size of my arch, it’s tiny.

Here is what a normal arch looks like .

You can clearly see the difference between the two. Hence the fact I must firstly have my arch expanded. It took about two weeks before I felt comfortable wearing it, speaking with it and eating with it and now over two months on it doesn’t bother me at all.

During my last app. my Arch expander was expanded slightly and I experienced slight sensitivity and pressure on my teeth but nothing that required a painkiller. I was also told to purchase M3Micropore Tape and tape my mouth each night before sleep. I know don’t laugh, sounds weird right. But the aim is that the tongue is the strongest tool within your mouth and it will help in the arch expansion. I sleep with my mouth wide open catching flies, well no more as its taped shut each night so that my tongue rises to the top of my mouth into my arch instead  of mouth hanging open and tongue hanging down.Try it yourself … you see. Let me know if you’re a MOUTH BREATHER ? The one with a glass of water on the bedside locker at all times cause when you wake your mouths like the Sahara dessert.So I’m now in training to breath through my nose and open up the nasal passages more. I have been sleeping better as a result I must say.

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Looks like an implement of torture but it’s not really !

I will keep you posted monthly on my progress. Any questions just ask. I ‘m smiling lots now before I’m going to be a BRACE FACE, JAWS all those silly names the kids will more than likely call me once there on. The latest SNAPCHAT filter had em in stitchessnapchat-8264132583133517277.jpg

Yours truly Smiler XxX

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4 thoughts on “My Brace Journey

  1. welcome to the brace club! This is very exciting. it is never too late. Reading what you have gone through is crazy! Its so great to hear that you finally got to the bottom of it all. I embarked on my brace joruney about 13 months ago and i haven’t looked back. I had people asking me “why now?!” and “Aren’t you a bit too old?” While my wallet is empty, my teeth and smile have been totally transformed. I have another couple of months left and can’t wait to see the end result. Incidentally we took Tristan to see David O’Meara recently and I wasn’t too sure initially but hearing your positive experience with him, gave me some reassurance. Tristan also has to tape (Never heard of that before so I was once again not convinced but his explanation made perfect sense) I’d love to hear how you get on. What type of braces will you be getting?

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Delighted to hear your happy in your decision & you’ll have an amazing smile at the end of it😉😆Teeth can shift & move so much during the years. For me it was 99.9% a medical decision & the 1% cosmetic will be an added bonus. One thing that bugs me is !
      As someone who pays for Health Insurance that I cannot claim anything back on my Brace Expenses . It’s one thing when it’s for purely cosmetic reasons but another one entirely when it’s mainly MEDICAL & they won’t budge no matter how many x-rays or medical documentation you give them. Our Health System is a joke …
      Yes I am so so very happy in my choice of Orthodontist & everything David said made perfect sense. I am actually looking forward to becoming a BRACE FACE even at my age.

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  2. All the trouble that can be caused by misaligned teeth…I had no idea. I sympathize with what you had to go through before you finally got your braces, but I’m so glad that those problems were resolved once you got them! How crazy having been run through the gambit of medication and treatment…and the doctors were treating the wrong things! That’s modern medicine for you. Good post!

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  3. What an incredible journey, and well worth the read. who would have thought so much troubles do pain could be caused by teeth. Iv been tempted to get braces in the past as 3 o my siblings have had them quite late in their lives, teo in their 40’s and one almost 60! Workin. With the public most of my life I believe smiling is the most natural and effective way toake people comfortable not to mention brighten your own day. Wouldn’t I love to have beautifully straight teeth to show. You’ve share a great post thanks for you story, and share your new smile with the world.

    Liked by 1 person

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