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Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Finally my braces are off

It's been over 2 years and finally my braces are off.

The baby tooth on my upper right side (canine) that has caused this entire ordeal  is long gone.   
The pic you can see that my canine was tiny and dark.  After my daughter was born that baby tooth shrank and then a piece of it broke off and I started getting a cavity.   Since I was a kid the dentists took X-rays of my entire mouth and said I have no adult canine to move into the baby tooth canine area.  Bummer!!!

Well, I took tons to care of my teeth to prevent it breaking of damaging it, until my pregnancy as I've already said.  

I was given a few options regarding replacement: 
1.  remove the baby canine and add a tooth the hooks-up/ flips into the back called "flipper".   The issue, I would always have to remove it to eat, sleep and brush my teeth.  Plus, the natural teeth would shift into that area and the gap would have bone loss.
2. Remove it, file the two teeth next to the baby canine to make a bridge.  But that would file down two good teeth!!! Plus you need to replace the bridge every 10 years.  Plus the attached teeth shrink!!! What an ordeal.  Plus bone loss would still occur and a possibility that the two teeth next to it would begin bone loss and in about 20 years they would fall off as well.  I consider this the tooth loss domino effect! No thanks!!!
3. Remove it, get braces to expand the area and get an implant that will look like my natural tooth and not damage the other two teeth. 

I went with option 3. The pics below are about three months after braces were put in...

I got porcelain braces as you can see here, and a fake tooth was attached to the braces to fill in the empty space.  First the space had to be expanded to fit a regular sized canine ( twice the size of baby canine).   That itself took about 9 months, plus although my teeth weren't crowded or too crooked, my bottoms were attaightened and two of my last bottom molars were turned about 45 degrees.  All that messed with my bite and ended up having to wear elastic a for about 6 months at the end to straighten my bite.  

I do have to add that the orthodontist showed me an X-ray of my teeth and said my two upper had shortened roots.  That simply means he has to do my treatment slower than others or the roots would shrink even more and fall out. Scary!!!  So something that could have taken 15-18 months to correct took 25 months. 

Here you can see the empty space I have now that my braces are out: 
Now I need bone graft since there is no bone in the area that was stretched.     For now I only need to wear my retainers at night and the top one if I want to pretend I have no gap during the day. Here is my teeth with retainer and fake tooth attached to it.  

I plan on getting the bone graft in June 2016, since it's quite a bit of money.   Plus, it has to heal for 7-9 months, the plan is to have the implant beginning of next year.   

This is taking forever, but I know I will love my smile for decades to come once the entire treatment is concluded. Hopefully I won't have teeth issues as a senior citizen. 

1 comment:

Sharon Woods said...

I think I would have gone with option 3 as well. It seems like the one that has the longest time frame attached to it but you aren't destroying additional teeth in the process. Your teeth look great so far and I look forward to seeing the finished result once everything is completed finished!