Welcome to month SEVEN of adult braces! If we’re counting (which I totally am), I’m only 20 weeks away from having these babies for a full year and that makes the estimated 12-18 month journey seem to be flying by very quickly. Even if I have to wear them for the full 18 months, that’s still just nine months away. People grow humans in nine months. I can wear braces for nine more months if I have to, right!?
This month, I’m giving you my standard pic update and also wanted to share five of my favorite health benefits of adult braces. Several of you reading these posts may be considering braces or already have them and possibly struggling with wearing them. I wanted to bring up some of the PERKS of wearing adult braces to help us along the way. Here we go…
5 Health Benefits of Adult Braces
- Straight teeth reduce the amount of plaque that gathers in crevices, and less plaque can lower your chances for gum disease, which has been linked to heart disease and diabetes. –Source
- Dr. Robert Bray, past president of the American Association of Orthodontists (AAO) explains that as you get older, your teeth shift and become crowded. This makes it uncomfortable to chew and difficult to floss. –Source
- Adult braces can aid to decrease and relieve potential jaw joint problems or pain (TMJ/TMD). –Source
- One of the results of adult treatment from braces can offer higher self-esteem and self-confidence. –Source
- Braces help to minimize the extreme wear on the teeth. –Source
Now that you hopefully feel a little better about adult braces, let’s check out my progress…
What’s happened since the last update
I didn’t get rubber bands this month – as I had desperately hoped. However, we are making good progress. I was upgraded from rounded wires to rectangular wires on both top and bottom (YAY!). When you first start braces treatment, the wires are more rounded to ease the teeth into alignment. Once the teeth are mostly straight, you may advance to a more rectangular/square shape to really get those teeth perfect. You won’t get a rectangular wire initially (depending on your issues) simply because it would put too much pressure on the bracket and more than likely, pop the bracket off the tooth.
I’ve always had bigger (“chiclet”) top teeth, but with my narrow mouth, my smile was more narrow. I’m hoping the rectangular wires will help give me a wider smile, overall.
The new wire hasn’t really hurt. In fact, I didn’t even start to feel any discomfort until two weeks into wearing them. It was just slight soreness in my teeth and I can feel that my teeth are slightly flaring out a little more again (which is what helps straighten them out before they get pulled back in for good). I didn’t even need Tylenol, so really… not much pain at all.
The BIGGEST news this month is that I’m NOT WEARING SILVER RUBBER BANDS, lol! I was debating testing out ‘color,’ but I was forced to this past month because the office was completely out of my go-to silver rubber bands. I opted for navy blue. I figured navy wasn’t as dark as black and it would also make my teeth appear as white as possible (although my toothpaste and mouthwash I use continue to work miracles – read that post here).
I’d definitely get navy blue again, but that’s probably the most daring I’d go. I wish the pretty periwinkle wouldn’t stain because I’d try those, too.
As a reminder, here’s where we started seven months ago:
Here’s the ‘aerial’ shots:
Check out last month’s shots here.
I feel a lot more positive about the braces this month. Maybe it’s the navy rubber bands, maybe it’s the rectangular wire. Who knows. But I’m still praying hard for this to be over before 18 months. I know so many have told me to assume they’ll be on even longer than 18 months, but I’m doing some mad science here and have calculated (with absolutely no idea what I’m doing and no medical degree), the following schedule, lol:
- rectangular wires – month 7 & 8
- rubber bands to correct bite – months 9, 10, 11, 12
- minor adjustments/detailing/”baking” – months 13, 14, 15
- GET BRACES OFF MONTH 15 – February 2017
I’m crazy, I know. Please just say a prayer with me so I can be the one person to get her braces off EARLIER than expected and break the stereotype! 😀
Check back July 29th for my 8 month update (Friday, instead of Monday… just this one month). I have no official ‘topic’ to cover other than sharing my progress, so if anyone has any ideas/suggestions/questions, please leave them in the comments or shoot me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’d be happy to start addressing them. Also, special shout out to those who have commented/emailed me and are more advanced in your braces journey. It’s been so nice to hear from you and be inspired!
Happy navy rubber bands,