Sunday, December 22, 2013

Day 195 - All Hail the Waterpik

soo…. today I discovered the glorious thing that is the waterpik. I was cleaning today to prep for the holidays… and i found my almost new waterpik tucked under my sink! I know lots of blogs i have read raved about how wonderful it is. But today, i discovered how right they truly are. haha

My surgeon didn't want me using a water pick after surgery because he didn't want it to possibly hurt my incisions, which makes sense to me. I just completely forgot to take it out after my incisions healed…. until now anyway.

That thing is amazing! gets food out SOOO easily. It is like Christmas came a few days early! hahahahah. Easily the highlight of my day.

So, I just thought I'd update. Also, with essentially being banded shut at night, my jaw has started hurting again…

I'm super worried that the bands are pulling my jaw to an uncomfortable, unnatural spot :( So, I kinda want to call my orthodontist and just talk to him for reassurance. I just want the pain to go away. It isn't my teeth that hurt. Just… my jaw hurts badly when I wake up after wearing the bands. feels like the before surgery pain. noooo :(

but i guess ill get it figured out. just wish it was easier!

but anyway, i hope all of you guys have a wonderful holiday. enjoy any break you have :) I'm off to ignore reality by reading The Book Thief. take care :)


Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Day 183 - SIX MONTHS:)

June 10th - December 10th.

I made it to 6 months post-op. Wow. Who would have thought I could have made it this far :) So i was gonna write a super long post… but it is late.. and i had a full day of homework and college applications. so to say i am exhausted is an understatement. anyway, ill still mention a few things! basically though things are the same from my last post.

I do have some updates though because i had an orthodontist appointment today! and it was exciting because it was to get my "finishing bands" (which is code word for a big pain in the butt) basically i have one huge rubber band for each side and i have to zig zag it up and down across every tooth. this basically makes me unable to open my mouth at all. reminds me of days after surgery…! and i didn't miss it at all… luckily i only have to sleep in the bands.

what is really odd to me is that my orthodontist cut my wires and only kept them across my front teeth. maybe that helps the tiny movements of my back teeth allow for a better bite? I'm not sure. i see the point of the rubber bands to move teeth to fit a comfortable bite. i just better make sure i wear them every night! because during the day my back teeth don't have any wires or bands on them. weird right?!

today i had to see my incision sites in my lower back of my mouth as i have to start the bands on my last molar. it was bigger than i expected and kinda scary to see. but it made surgery seem like such a real and lifelong thing i guess. idk, it was good and bad to notice!

but anyway, i go back to the orthodontist in 4 weeks for them to see what everything looks like. and then hopefully by february i get my braces off!! woo :)

my last post had so much info… and i feel like I'm only repeating myself… but hmm. things are good! ill keep you guys updated with how i end things with my braces :) hopefully we get to part sooner than later.

here are a few random pictures i guess?

definitely feel like swelling is gone. yay :)

when they had my wire out at the orthodontist and i was pretending like i didn't have braces… if only it were real. haha.

before bands.

soooo many bands……………..! but you can
 see how there isn't a wire on any of my back teeth.

hope all is well with those of you on this journey too :) off to sleep for me..! if ya need anything, just holler :)


Saturday, November 30, 2013

Day 173. Holy Buckets.

GUYS! hi :) :)

i apologize for not posting anything recently, but hey that must be a good thing! i have been thinking about my jaw surgery less and less as the days go by. luckily. overall i have been feeling great! i did have 2 sinus infections within a month, and let me tell you…. those made the plates and the area behind my cheeks hurt a TON from the infected sinuses. I also experience tiny flare ups of swelling on those days. so i hope you guys don't get sinus infections in the first few months after surgery!

I am slowly but surely approaching the 6-month mark, which is december 10th. and wow does it feel great to be so far from surgery :) life is pretty much normal!

OH. guess what I ate yesterday for the first time since surgery???

raw carrots. the ultimate hard food. hahahah, and it didn't even really hurt :) yay!

the most negative thing that i experience after surgery remains my jaw clicking. I didn't experience and clicking prior to surgery. but afterwards… my left side clicks with almost every chew. i have discovered that if i chew a certain way sometimes it subsides though, so there is hope!

I also still grind my teeth excessively at night… and since i have braces still, i don't have a special retainer/guard to protect my teeth at night. so maybe, once my braces are off and i get my retainer and my mouth guard, that will take care of the issues from grinding my teeth. I feel like the grinding contributes to my jaw clicking as well as the headaches and other jaw aches that i experience when i wake up.

just as before surgery, some days are better than others. I'm not completely pain free. definitely still get headaches occasionally, and my jaw still just aches, but I'm just staying hopeful that it'll get better some day :) if I'm not hopeful… then ill just be too sad.

i still have complete numbness in the upper gums of my mouth. everything else i can at least feel if i touch. i have these weird sensations around my lips, like if i pinch the skin on the left side of my chin, i feel it in my upper left teeth. don't know why… but i do. and it is annoying. similarly, if i poke or mess with the left side of my nose, i feel it in my front left upper tooth. sooo weird. maybe it was just that the nerves healed a bit off? idk. i guess i can live with it… just an extremely odd feeling.

overall though, things are awesome :) even with the things that annoy me… i would have surgery over again. i would make the same choice. nothing will ever take away from the fact that my teeth actually TOUCH. (this is a completely magical feeling that i didn't really experience before surgery).

hmm let's see… oh, as for how i feel about my appearance, some days i feel like my face is too round or puffy, but i just love my profile, and so it is all good. the other day i was buying some new clothes, and i was in a dressing room that had a bunch of mirrors, and out of the corner of my eye i saw that the side mirror showed my profile. and it shocked me how different i looked from before. it was a great realization :)

OH! I saw my dentist and jaw doctor for the first time since surgery 2 weeks ago. He was shocked at how great my surgery turned out. He even brought out the old model he had of my teeth and our mouths just dropped at how bad it was before i had braces and surgery. oh how my teeth have changed in the last 4 years! AND somehow i made it through recovery with ZERO cavities! i definitely way not expecting that. so Go Me i guess! haha.

I am still on track to get my braces off at the end of january… which seems soooooo sooooo far away…. but i guess i trust that my orthodontist will use this time to get my teeth perfect. and i guess having pretty awesome teeth will be 100% worth the wait.

for anyone still in the earlier stages of this process… i assure you, it. is. worth. it.! hang in there :) we have been in similar situations, but it all works out :) worrying doesn't do much good. but i also assure you that i worried too….. i am a huge worrier… but it all worked out. but boy am i glad that i am through the hard part… i almost get to celebrate being done! until that point though, ill just try to forget that I've had braces on for almost 3 years, i guess. ahha

and i guess i can't leave this post without adding a few random photos!

i hope everything is going well with all of you guys. i am so incredibly grateful for the blogging community for helping through this whole ordeal. so a big thank you :) please talk to me if anything is needed. anyway, until next time!


Sunday, October 20, 2013

Day 132 - Busy, Busy, Busy

so this past week i have been dealing with a sinus infection, and that made my jaw pain increase substantially. the areas on either side of my nose not only ached immensely from the sinus infection, but also the plates there from surgery just made my whole face ache. ouch! luckily i am starting to feel better from the antibiotics i got, and things are going back to normal.

sorry i haven't updated for a while! golf season just made me insanely busy. since i have to go finish up some homework, ill just attach a few random pictures, and then update at a later date?

im set to get braces off at the end of january as of now.


my HUGE pills for my sinus infection. 875 mg.

my last homecoming!

golf tournament with my tissue box. don't golf with a sinus infection. not fun.

GUYS. I had my first piece of gum today (well multiple). another reason why i felt it appropriate to make a post. Before surgery i was truly addicted to gum, we are talking like 5+ pieces of gum a day, so it is pretty darn great for it not to hurt to chew it again. yay for normalcy!

I still get headaches and randoms aches depending on the day, but hoping that it just continues to be less and less... some things are irritating from surgery.. but overall i can live with it.

hope all is well with you guys!


Monday, September 30, 2013

Day 112 - 16 weeks!! wow wow wow.

Oh my goodness, I made it this far!!! way past the 100 days mark, and soon approaching the 4 month mark (oct 10th). Things are pretty darn awesome :) if i weren't so busy with everything i would post more! but life just kinda gets hectic as im sure we all realize.

before/after 3 months.
SO hmm..... what to talk about relating to my jaw. well, i can eat almost everything now! I still have yet to try raw carrots or an apple.... but im a little scared. so ill just avoid those for a bit longer. some parts of the day i have no pain... but i normally wake up to a clenched achy jaw from grinding my teeth :( also, my upper lip is always really stiff in the morning, but by the end up the day it is more normal. hmm what else....

OHH GUESS WHAT. I have an ortho appt a few weeks ago and asked him when he thought id get my braces off since i was debating when id take senior pictures etc. my ortho said i would get them off by january. so YAY. 3-4 more months from now isn't horrible :)

I still have clicking more than not in my left jaw joint when i eat which wasn't there before surgery... but we'll see. some days it isn't there at all, so maybe itll go away eventually? idk..

I finally feel more normal when i see my reflection and can accept that this is my face. i dont just see "puffy cheeks" when i look in a mirror anymore. woo! Sometimes i still feel a little stiff and swollen, but just depends on the day.

Numbness is bearable at this point. my top gums are still completely numb which is fairly annoying. but oh well. everything else has at least partial feeling.

Also.... i have this weird feeling between my left nostril and my left top tooth. if i blow my nose the tooth and jaw area above it kinda vibrates.. and i feel certain things in both spots... maybe the nerve healed weirdly? like if one area feels something.. the other does too. and when i have a stuffy nose and i talk loudly.. the tooth and that part of my jaw vibrates too. sigh... sorry that was not a good explanation. but it's just so gosh darn annoying! hope this isn't permanent :(

my biggest complaint though is the sensitivity. brushing with my sonicare hurts so badly!! i hate it :( sensitivity sucks let me tell you.

and now you get the loads of pictures. because jaw surgery is a good excuse to take many selfies and not feel (too) ashamed. hope all is well with you guys!!



Monday, September 2, 2013

Day 84 - TWELVE WEEKS (pictures upon pictures)

So since im not feeling a ton better yet (with my head cold symptoms), I am pretty positive that i have a sinus infection. whoopee :\ but oh well. ill head to the doctor sometime next week and hopefully get some medicine. just wanted to do some sort of update since i have free time tonight! i've been crazy busy with school and golf and show choir recently, missing school for tournaments and everything else just makes my life insanely busy! but oh well, i love everything, so i deal with only getting 5-6 hours of sleep and such. but it does make me appreciate my weekends :)

love not having my over bite!!!! :):):)
here are some candids from this weekend. wow! i don't have to worry about my profile anymore, woohoo :)

as far as jaw related things go, everything is pretty good. I am now chewing more and more. this monday is my 12 week mark which is when my surgeon said i can try to eat a steak.. yay! it still feels quite weird to chew though... so im hoping it just starts to feel more and more normal as the weeks go on. my biggest complaint right now is my sensitivity. i can't even use my sonicare toothbrush because it hurts so badly :( the sensitivity still feels like when you have a cold popsicle and it touches some teeth that are super sensitive to it and you experience almost some sort of pain. im not even sure how to describe it. but it is annoying and such. i also feel it when i eat hard food. so most times i just try to eat the softest food as possible...

BUT last night i tried to eat some steak because my family was having it and i was just starved. i cut it up into super duper tiny pieces and tried my best to chew. I could kinda mush it but it gave me a headache to fully bite down on the steak. so i just went and mixed it with baked beans and swallowed it whole. I give up on chewing things like that super easily.... just easier to cut it up extremely tiny and swallow whole.

but let's see... what else to update. oh i guess i could talk about numbness. the only things still completely numb are my upper gums. everything else i can at least tell that im touching it.

90% feeling
  • chin
  • bottom lip
  • bottom gums
60% feeling (i can feel it completely but there is tingling too)
  • nose
  • edge of cheeks (more towards my ears)
  • left cheek inside of mouth
30% feeling (i can tell something is touching it.... but cant exactly "feel" it, and tons of tingling)
  • upper lip
  • roof of mouth
  • inside left cheek (keep biting it accidentally when i eat..)
  • the area of my cheeks right next to my nose (where the screws and plates on my upper jaw are)
0% feeling
  • upper gums (i can't even tell when i am brushing them...)
still have sensitivity in my mouth, but i think it may be SLOWLY improving yay! but i still cant use my sonicare toothbrush... which sucks. it is really hard for me to get the "clean mouth" feeling. but oh well.

here is my bite. have an ortho appt wednesday and im FINALLY going to ask how much longer i have my braces on for!! hopefully i get them off soon....... *crosses fingers*

hmm, i think my swelling is almost completely gone! some days i wake up and look a tiny bit puffier than others... but i think im the only one that can notice it.

bored before school one morning about a week ago...

also, i still have my left jaw joint popping sometimes, but only after long periods of me not doing anything with my jaw and then i go to eat something hard. so maybe it is just getting used to everything again? hope so :( don't want to be stuck with that forever. at least i don't have pain when it pops though.

after days where i chew a lot, my jaw does ache. there are a couple different types of pain i still experience... one being just tiredness in the joints and just overall from over-chewing or talking. but then sometimes i have pain in my lower jaw where the plates are or my upper jaw where the plates are still. which probably shouldn't be happening but i don't know what to do about it.

my lips are less stiff!!! i still can't do "fish" lips... but i can at least make a "kissy-face"...

overall i am still so happy that i went ahead with the surgery :) even though it was a rough recovery the first month... i survived the worst of it and can now just move past all of this. i feel pretty good about my face even though i think i look different sometimes... but i guess everyone goes through that with this surgery. our face is just so integral to who we are... just scary to change it and still try to see yourself. but hey, having all of my teeth touch is SOOO worth it :)

my lips don't touch naturally still... but they are SOOOO close. so i can live with that. 

anyway, sorry for the loads and loads of pictures.... i just didn't really want to sort through a ton and figure out which were best to post, so i just put them all in! I hope all is well with you guys going through something similar... :) now to start another insanely busy week....