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I'm "bracing" myself

not for a hurricane, but rather.........

4:40 am on Oct 2, 2002 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I had braces put on about 2 months ago (I'm 27 yrs old, btw)....and yesterday they put these small rubberbands that connect from the top canines to the lower back teeth. The goal of these rubberbands are to push the upper teeth back - and let me tell you something - the dull pain is driving me crazy! It even hurt to chew on coleslaw for dinner tonight, haha! The most annoying part is that I want to fiddle with the rubberbands with my tongue and fingers, but that stretches the bands even more and creates more tension!.....

Putting the braces on hurt pretty good.

the first round of tightening wasn't bad at all.

this second round of tightening combined with the rubberhands is pretty rough! :)

I'm off to swallow a handful of Advil. I hope I wake in the 'morn! ;)

(I think this is my first post in Foo :))

9:50 am on Oct 2, 2002 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

Hey! Congrats! I had braces put on right before I turned 28.

I had to have jaw surgery a little while back, and the braces were a teeth re-aligning step that had to happen before the jaw re-aligning thing did.

So I had the unlucky "pleasure" of having braces twice in my life. Once, as a kid, for cosmetic reasons ... and once, as an adult, for structural ones.

My best advice is: those little rubber bands are GREAT for shooting at co-workers, so be sure to get an extra bag of 'em from your orthodontist. :)

12:10 pm on Oct 2, 2002 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Hey! It's never too late for braces. I was the Patient Manager for an orthodontic office for some time. We put braces on everyone...even up to 80 years old. Can you believe that? If something bothers you, your never too old to fix it, right?
Some tips that I have for you...
Take some pain reliever before you go to your appointments. It's better to nip it in the bud, so to speak. Also, ask your orthodontist to give you some wax wafers. They come in different flavors (grape,cherry,bubblegum) and you bite on them to relieve the pressure of the bands. Also, I learned the hard way. I was given 2 plastic retainers that looked like mouthgaurds. Did I wear them? Of course not, and now my teeth have shifted. Ask for "bonded" retainers. This is a small bar that goes behind your teeth, out of view. Your bottom teeth tend to shift very easily, and with the bonded route, you never have to worry about those messy plastic retainers that chances are you'll be picking thru the garbage at McDonalds for anyway.
They bonded retainers can stay in for a long time. I've seen them in for 10 years and more with no problems.
12:29 pm on Oct 2, 2002 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Interesting topic..I've considered getting braces for a few years now. It's good to hear that others, who are around my age, are going through the process. Perhaps it's time for me to take the leap and get them.....
12:38 pm on Oct 2, 2002 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Hey Holly, I am looking to get braces at 32. Since your a fellow Hampton Roads resident, would you recommend that place you worked at? If so drop me a sticky mail please. Thanks.
1:50 pm on Oct 2, 2002 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I made it through the night :) Its amazing how one's teeth shift overnight. You wake up the next morning and can easily tell that your teeth have moved......

Hawkgirl - did you get the braces for TMJ related reasons?

HollyHates - I'll ask the orthodontists about those bonded retainers - thanks!

I had to get these braces because my front top and bottom teeth were wearing each other out. Braces were put on to actually push out the front teeth to prevent the teeth from rubbing against the bottoms. While its a pain now (litterally:)) I hope it will pay off down the road.

2:05 pm on Oct 2, 2002 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

Bradley, I had jaw pain but not true TMJ stuff. Basically my bite was misaligned and this caused me to clench my teeth, which caused jaw pain, which caused me to clench my teeth, which caused ...

So they split my lower jaw and moved it forward about 6mm ... and now the bite is all properly aligned and I have no more pain.

2:08 pm on Oct 2, 2002 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Even though comic tv would have you belive the bands will shoot off at random targets, I never once had that happen (over 3 years!).

I wish I had known about those bonded retainers. I'm probably going to get braces again, but maybe I can get those clear things...

2:32 pm on Oct 2, 2002 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Do clear braces cost more..? A lot more..?

- Chad

2:51 pm on Oct 2, 2002 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Cost more, yes. A lot more, I don't think so....

I have the clear/ceramic braces on the top of my teeth, and the silver ones on the bottoms..... Go 50/50 - not many people see your bottom teeth anyhow.

2:59 pm on Oct 2, 2002 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

The clear brackets cost a bit more, but they're worth it. The metal ones are stronger - they hold the bond better with the teeth - so depending on how much torque your teeth need, you may or may not have the option of clear brackets.

If you just need some minor cosmetic tweaking, the "invisible" braces (brand name Invisalign) might work for you. Most adults opt for this system if it will work for their needs. It also costs more.

As for retainers - I'm much more conscientious about wearing them as an adult than I was as a kid. Probably because the cost of the braces was so astronomical that I REFUSE to muck it up by not wearing the retainers! ;)

3:49 pm on Oct 2, 2002 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

I had braces for 2 years at 16-18... hated every minute of them. The rubber bands were like torture and every time you got used to the braces, the orthodontist would sadistically tighten them and the pain would start all over.

I probably didn't wear the braces long enough because my teeth are still a little crooked, but who cares? They don't hurt and to me they look fine. I don't understand why people go through torture to look just a little bit better. Maybe if you have extremely crooked teeth (like I did as a kid), but not for just a little cosmetic difference...

(end rant)

4:20 pm on Oct 2, 2002 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Invisible braces do cost extra, but when you go for the consultation (after they do molds, and are giving you a treatment plan), ask if you can get them for no extra cost. Usually, they will consider it just for the asking.
The brackets do cost the orthodontist a little extra, but it's not an extreme costs difference for them.
Just remember that clear brackets break much easier then metal. Sometimes, they will still have to use metal wires to get proper movement.
When getting those tiny rubber bands that go around your brackets, do not get clear ones. Get gray. Why you ask? Imagine MUSTARD! Any food that has coloring in it will stain the bands, and then your stuck with it for another month until they change them again.
You will notice that as your teeth shift, the wires will stick you behind your molars. Get lots of wax and keep it on hand. When it sticks you, roll up a ball of it and put it on until you can get to the ortho. They will usually get you right in and it only takes them a couple of minutes to fix. (this can happen a lot during initally)
There is a lot of talk about this new shield type thing that you can buy and straighten your teeth at home. I have seen it one tv. What happens is you go to the ortho for a consultation. They take molds of your teeth and send them away to a company that designs different "trays" that you will use in stages. This is done at home and there are less ortho appointments. This is VERY expensive. Double the cost of braces and will only fix very minor problems. Won't fix crossbites..etc.
If you have any more question, please feel free to ask me.
4:37 pm on Oct 2, 2002 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

Holly - I never had problems with the clear rubber bands. I was pretty meticulous about brushing and they stayed totally clear and invisible.
4:45 pm on Oct 2, 2002 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Yeah, but I have seen a lot of people with really stained up looking bands. Once they get stained, you can't brush it off. It really can be a problem for some people.
4:48 pm on Oct 2, 2002 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Oh, of course if you get clear brackets you will want clear bands. I meant get gray bands for metal brackets.
3:57 pm on Oct 4, 2002 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Thanks for all the information, folks!

I talked to my better half last night, and I think I just may go through with getting some braces, perhaps in the spring.

Hollyhats : I'll keep you posted..and I'll also probably have a few more questions. Thank you for your insight.

- Chad

4:13 pm on Oct 4, 2002 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

You are welcome SLY!
4:27 pm on Oct 4, 2002 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

There is always indirect bonding systems ( think we call it that ) I did some work for a dental lab ortholine they pioneered a brace that fits behind the teeth in the uk. i know they don't do work for joe public. but they work the orthodontic surgeons all other the world.


4:52 pm on Oct 4, 2002 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Dave N- Good Point!
In the office I worked in, they tried the brackets behind the teeth. (Not sure if this is the device you are speaking of) This was for special circumstances- example *professional models.
From what I was told, they really hurt because they are directly in front of your tounge. Also, they are very hard to work on to make adjustments. It's easier to work on the braces when they are on the front of the teeth. And I hear that there is more breakage.
But, if you are in a profession that you can't afford to have the braces showing, then it's worth it. Personally though, I think it is becoming more acceptable to be an adult with braces.
6:01 pm on Oct 4, 2002 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

Hey, if Tom Cruise [seattletimes.nwsource.com] can get 'em, anyone can.

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