Thursday, April 8, 2010

"BRACE" Yourselves!

I was really trying to find a more recent picture of Alayna's smile that shows her teeth. She has a fantastic snaggle-smile right now. Some of those gaps have been filled with huge, crooked teeth. Teeth in front of teeth, some sideways, some only partially in because there simply isn't room for them to grow any further. I had almost the exact same smile and tooth configuration as Alayna does now--it's all because of me. And it's all about to change.

Yesterday we had her first orthodontist consult. While examining her mouth, the doctor used phrases like "severe crowding" and "5mm off center" to describe the shape of her mouth. No surprises there. They recommended pulling a baby tooth to allow the other teeth to shift, and putting in spaces and a "space saver" on the bottom. On the top she'll get an expander, to slowly expand her jaw and hopefully help the teeth to shift into place somewhat on their own once there's some room. She'll also need top braces on the front four teeth to help them pull into line. All this is what they are calling "Phase 1" and hopefully we won't need a Phase 2, or at least not a real in depth Phase 2. That's what the doc said. Let's hope it's true.

Having lived through this myself, I know what my poor baby girl is going through. I know that she'll have days that it hurts to eat anything. I know that she'll want gum or taffy or caramel so bad some days that it just doesn't seem fair. But in the long run, it's so worth it. She'll thank us for giving her a nice smile that will only help her self confidence. But until then, when all it does is hurt...Wish us luck.


Lexey said...

Good luck! Jack has to have work too. Thats courtesy of Sean though, that he inherited it. ;) He has too many so they are preempting and pullin one that is sideways up top that will mess up the rest. Had a diff one pulled during a surgery. Hopefully it will help the others come in straight and then we will probably have two roungs of braces...crazy stuff!! We'll be commiserating on it all soon enough.

Heather Forcey said...

My nephew just had four teeth pulled because of crowding. I went through all the teeth pulling, braces, bands, etc. She'll thank you for it later. I think it is sort of a badge of honor. Let's hope she won't need "Phase 2!" Yikes!

Carol said...

Ok, so we had dentist appts yesterday (and I have cavities, grr!) but get this--they took x-rays of Anthony's teeth and we'd been wondering why he still hadn't lost those 2 front teeth on the bottom (since they were the first to come in...they usually fall out in that order anyway) and the x-ray told us why: HE HAS NO ADULT LOWER FRONT TEETH! Those 2 teeth are missing! You can see all the rest of the adult teeth waiting to grow in but there's a hole where those 2 teeth should have been! WEIRD! I've been trying to call my dad to ask him about it (he's a dentist) but haven't gotten ahold of him yet. The dentist yesterday went ahead and pulled those 2 teeth (both still had roots firmly attached...they weren't going anywhere.)

I'm dreading braces in our future too...George had to wear headgear as a kid.