Operation Braceface: Day 855

We’re swiftly approaching the original estimated endpoint of my treatment, but it looks like we’re going to have some more adjustments to do.

after today's adjustment

The big thing this time was putting brackets on my back molars (my “sevens” in ortho-speak). We ended up not only putting brackets on those, but also replacing two others in the upper left quadrant of my mouth (upper right to them).

Due to the new brackets, we reduced my wire back down to a round 14 (I had been wearing rectangular wires) and moved from medium to light elastics in a more normal triangle configuration.

I mentioned to the assistant that, when they have me bite down to check how everything is aligned, I only hold my jaw like that when I’m chewing. Normally, my back teeth don’t touch, but my front teeth do. This is apparently very wrong, and needs to be fixed. She also noted that I have a crossbite — basically, my molars don’t line up on top of one another. This is not news to me since I’ve had braces; it really sucks, actually, and I’m glad that someone noticed and that it’s going to be addressed.

So, next time, we move up to round 16s for wires, and we check my bite to decide how to proceed.

I see lots of crazy elastic configurations in my future. Sigh.

Anyone who knows me knows that I rarely smile with my teeth showing. It has to be a genuine smile — even then, sometimes I’ll intentionally keep my mouth closed. It’s going to be a hard habit to break once I my orthodontic treatment is over.

Just to show how far I’ve come, though, below is a comparison: me smiling at Aaron during our Hawaii vacation in 2008, and me trying my damnedest to conjure up a sincere toothy smile in the mirror today.

May 2008 v. March 2008: braces, new glasses, and a few pounds lighter

(Also note that I’ve lost… *checking my records* …about 35 pounds between these two photos.)

I might be getting older and gimpier in some ways, but I’m still working toward being the best version of myself that I can be. And that feels pretty awesome.

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