Tuesday, 4 December 2012

Christmas with braces

Yay it's December! It's the Christmas month, the month to eat too much, drink too much, spend too much and a chance for me and my bed to spend some quality time together.

In my usual winter fashion and much to the dismay of my friends I'm still walking round in open toe shoes, little ballet pumps, summer cardigans, and spring jackets. I am never prepared for the cold months clothes wise, I always loose gloves, I end up buying my winter coat in February and succumb to buying winter boots just before my feet get frost bite.

It's part disorganisation on my part (I'm always surprised by how cold it is from November onwards), part stupid impulse buys that don't go with anything but  look really good in my wardrobe, and partly because during the Christmas holidays I live in my PJ's and only change if I have to go out somewhere nice.

One of my favourite things about Christmas time is all the yummy food and chocolates, but thanks to having braces this year I will have to politely decline on a few of my favourite chocolates and treats! Toblorone is a big no no, as is toffee and caramel sweets and chestnuts and other nuts. Booo to braces at Christmas, although it could be worse I could have my mouth wired shut after having had double jaw surgery. Now that would put a sad face on Christmas, and good luck to those that are in this situation!

Our Christmas decorations haven't gone up yet, but I have decorated my nails in a Christmas sparkle!

Christmas Nails

My braces are no longer hurting my teeth and I am happy to say I'm back on normal food, however they have turned their attention to chewing up the inside of my mouth, cheek and lips. Bring out the wax and bonjela, I've asked for them as stocking fillers this year, including brush heads, inter-dental brushes and floss. Nothing says Merry Christmas like a fresh set of Teepee brushes!

Tuesday, 27 November 2012

No Pain No Gain

No pain, no gain.

What a stupid saying! Who wants pain to gain something, just have no pain and gain things. I know, I know, it will make you appreciate it more, you will feel like you achieved something etc etc. Well I appreciate good things when there is little or no pain involved, I will appreciate my nice lovely teeth and bite when I have them, I promise.

The 3rd brace tightening went well by the way! I had my bottom wire changed for the first time, and had 2 new brackets fixed on my very back molars. I think that's the reason why I cried when I brushed my teeth this morning, my poor little teeth are being pushed, pulled and forced into a new position. I thought they were safe, and had escaped further adjusting, oh how wrong I was! I also had a strange bit of glue (maybe, not sure what it is) fixed onto my lower wire, bit odd, should of asked why it was there but I forgot by the time he had finished and I had my top wire tightened, not changed, so my top teeth are a bit tender too.

So I'm back on soup, yogurt and ice cream and sobbing while I brush my teeth.

Although I did have a funny moment this morning when I was brushing my teeth. I was in my really old skanky PJ's, hair everywhere all in a mess, panda eyes because I never take my make-up off properly (bad I know) looking like a right mess, sobbing away, with my toothbrush in my mouth gingerly brushing my teeth, doing the tense shoulder, squinty eyes and scrunched up face waiting for the pain to come as you brush your teeth thing. And I just looked up at the mirror and saw myself and burst out laughing, spraying toothpaste everywhere but it was just funny how one little 20 min appointment had reduced me to that. I need to man up before my operation!

And on that note my Orthodontist has given me a tentative, indication, I'm not promising anything, but possibly, maybe, you could be ready for surgery by May/June next year, maybe, things might change, and it depends on surgery slots, and that is a maybe but that could be when you have surgery. So I asked him about when to book a holiday, when should I start my MBA, when should i look for an intern to cover me at work while I'm off and he said something very wise;

"Just carry on your life as normal, book and do and plan things as you wish and we will work surgery around you, I don't want you to put something off because surgery will one day be here, just do it, your life is first, surgery is second."

So bravo Mr O'Neil for being a brilliant Orthodontist and for offering me very wise words. I will carry on as normal and surgery can bloody well fit in around me and my life. I have been flapping and worrying about what I have planned for 2013 and will my surgery impact on this, will it fall around this time, when I want to be doing that or going here etc and he is right. I'm just going to do whatever I want, because the last thing I want is to say I could of done that, or I should of gone there etc My stupid teeth and jaws have held me back enough over the years and there not going to stop me know.

So MBA here I come, another trip to Paris here I come, 2 week holiday abroad in some sunshine here I come and double jaw surgery, I'm coming for you to!

Tuesday, 20 November 2012

3rd Brace Tightening is Approaching

Only 6 days to go till I get my braces tightened! I'm excited, I look forward to my Ortho appointment  each one is a step closer to getting my surgery. I keep trying to guess/predict how my teeth are lining up, are they ready for surgery? are they close? How much more do they have to move?

I'm becoming a bit obsessed  I'm always looking at my teeth, examining slight movements, gaps that appear then close up, how my bite is sitting, how much of an underbite I have, analyse each time  my braces start cutting up my lips and cheeks as a good thing - they are moving! I'm a teeth mad woman, I've even been caught at work with a ruler in my mouth trying to measure my underbite!? I need to get a grip!

Over the last few months I have witnessed many fellow Orthognathic Surgery Bloggers go through their surgery and come out on the other side happy. It has been a real pleasure and certainly an eye opener to be able to witness and follow individuals journeys through surgery and recovery and life after. I'm just getting a bit excited I guess about the prospect of me having a lovely bite, being able to eat and speak properly, not having jaw ache all the time, not worrying about pictures being taken, feeling horrible about my face, worrying if I'm going to be subjected to a nasty comment today and being able to bite into and through things!

So my constant assessing and obsessing over my teeth and any slight movement is just because I'm so excited to be normal and to be able to enjoy all the things that many people do everyday without a second thought. Upon reflection, maybe getting the ruler out at work was a tad bit too far, but at the time it was a really good idea! It didn't work anyway, the ruler was too big!

Here are some current pics of my lovely underbite! I've been in braces for over 5 months now and my teeth have moved so much. I'm gradually getting closer to being ready for my double jaw surgery to correct my underbite. I cant wait to get rid of it!

5.5 Months in braces

Straight teeth, top front teeth gap is closed, but bottom teeth have developed one?

Please mind the underbite!

I'm sure that gap between my two bottom teeth is there for a reason, I hope!?

Tuesday, 6 November 2012

The Joys of Braces - Age Identity Crisis

Ahhhhh yes, the good old double take, puzzled look, confused brow, searching eyes for a clear indication of age. The braces do it every time, throws people of track, they assess your age, then you open your mouth and those little shiny brackets dazzle them and all of sudden your 16? No, 14? Ummm 18? 20? No, 15?
I was all of the above at some point, but now I'm a 24 year old with braces. It is surprising how many people struggle with age assessing me.

For example at a recent trip to my local contraception clinic I was discussing with a nurse how much easier the clinic is for me to get to and to be been seen by a nurse rather than trying to get in at my doctors. The Conversation went something like this;

Nurse: "Yes it must be difficult trying to get an appointment outside of school, I don't suppose you can just leave a lesson can you." 
Me : "School? I don't go to school." 
Nurse: "Oh sorry, do you go to college then, a lot of young people I see prefer to go to colleges now rather than staying on at school"
Me: "No, I work full time, I'm 24, I finished school a while ago."
Nurse: "Oh god, sorry. I thought you were younger than that what with the..... you look younger than 24, I wish I looked so young!" 
Me: "It's ok, you're not the first"
Nurse: "Oh yes look, here's your date of birth, 1988, yes 24"

The rest of the appointment was rather awkward to say the least, but it happens to a lot of people. Braces are just something that people associate with young people, children and teenagers, like grey hair with old people.

You rarely see or hear about adults with braces, particularly in the UK and braces are often portrayed in films, TV and other media as part of the nerdy/geeky teenager stereotype role (along with glasses and spots). Well not any more! Not while they are attached to my teeth!

Wednesday, 31 October 2012

5 Months in Braces

Woooooo! 5 months done and dusted, it feels really strange to think that 5 months ago I was absolutely petrified about getting my braces on and starting this whole process. I still am scared and do sometimes question what on earth I have done, why have i started this, but I know why really deep down and that I'm doing the right thing.

My braces feel pretty normal now, I was looking at them this morning after brushing my teeth and I couldn't remember what my teeth looked like without them on. It's really funny how they have just become a part of me so quickly. I might keep a bracket when I eventually get them off, turn it into a bit of jewellery or something, make some earnings out of them and finally get my ears pierced. Might be a bit gross actually.

Anyway, only 26 days till I have my next tightening and possibly some extra brackets added to my very back teeth, I'm quite excited actually. I think it's because it's a step closer to surgery and meeting my new face, teeth and bite! I'm also thinking about booking myself in for a clean, My ortho doesn't clean my teeth when he tightens everything, I guess in the UK your are meant to go to your dentist for that, but I'll check with him when I'm in. I do drink a  lot of coffee and it suddenly dawned on me yesterday that although I do keep my teeth clean etc that the little bit of tooth under my bracket wont be getting all coffee stained so it might be a different shade one I get them off? I'll also run that past him too, don't want to have horrid stained teeth after all this!

I'll post some updated pics later this week of my teeth and bite at 5 months in! My wisdom teeth holes are closed up now, there is still a little dip in my gum line where they used to be but I guess that's normal, I wish I could of seen them, I bet wisdom teeth are huge.

It's Halloween too! I'm rubbish this year and not doing anything :-( but I did plan a costume earlier on in the month just in case. So here was my list of costume ideas that would make me look like I'd gone all out and had braces on as part of the costume or for dramatic effect...

  1. Geek - So easy to do and can sort of look pretty
  2. School Girl - I get mistaken for being 12 on a regular basis so why not make a point of it 
  3. Ugly Betty - My personal favourite and the costume I would pick, she made braces cool, and I loved the show!
  4. Tooth Fairy - Of course the Tooth Fairy has braces! 

If I needed to go gruesome for Halloween then I would of just added Zombie in front and covered myself in fake blood etc. Gutted I couldn't try out any of these costumes for Halloween but if I go to a fancy dress party for New Years I'm sorted! 

Happy Halloween Everyone! 

Halloween Pumpkin

Wednesday, 24 October 2012

Braces in Paris

I am back from a wonderful long weekend in Paris visiting my brother, my boyfriend organised this trip for me (my birthday present) and I have been so excited and looking forward to spending some quality time with my boyfriend and my brother.

I love, love, love Paris, no matter where you are in Paris the architecture is just beautiful and it has so many historic buildings so well preserved and looked after. I also love the French wine, food and pastries!

However the one thing that I did notice on this trip was the sheer amount of lovely bread that I was offered before, during and after meals. It probably wasn't one my best ideas but I did eat a lot of French bread, in the end I struggled to enjoy it, my poor jaws couldn't take the chewing and my braces were not so keen on the harder styles of French bread. Then on my return I paid the price for my over indulgence with severe jaw ache, that during the day grew from jaw ache, to ear ache, to a headache, to eye ache to me wanting to curl up in a ball and cry.

I went to my local pharmacy and asked for something, anything to help with the pain, I was given something (cant remember the brand name) with codeine, paracetamol and a muscle relaxant in it and a gel heat pack that I can warm up and put on my sore face. It worked brilliantly and knocked me out for the night.

So I paid the price for my over indulgence in bread, and have learnt a valuable lesson, don't eat too much French bread! it's bad for your jaws, bad for your braces and bad for your hips! Gym here I come, I've got a lot of Parisian calories to burn off!

Saturday, 13 October 2012

The Joy of Braces - Spitting

My favourite thing about having braces is that you get to spit on people. (Accidentally of course!) At first I found this so embarrassing and upsetting, but now I just find it funny watching people's reactions. Most people do 1 of 3 things;

  1. They don't even notice.
  2. Pretend not to notice. (but you have all ready watched their face go from normal to horror back to normal in a split second.)
  3. Do a casual wipe.  (My personal favourite)  
I have yet to come across anyone who has told me "You just spat on me." I think being an adult in braces wins me major sympathy points and the fact that people rarely like to make a big deal about things and will try and avoid confrontation or embarrassment at all costs.

I hosted a conference earlier on in the week and this involved lots of public speaking and up close and personal speaking were the accidental spit is always lurking. It went well though, I did spit a couple of times during the public speaking, most were a 1 or 2 reaction, I didn't get anyone so no 3ers were needed.

In the afternoon discussion/one on one sessions I wasn't so lucky. I did accidentally spit on one guest (I got his hand) and he was a 3er, I felt bad and apologised and then explained about my braces and my surgery. I don't think he understood English very well as he was laughing and smiling as I was explaining, or maybe he just thought serves you right for spitting on me you crazy woman.

We all do it from time to time, even those without braces, I've been a victim of the accidental spit a couple of times and I'm your classic 3er, the casual wiper. I cant have your spit on me but i don't want to offend you so I'll pretend that I always rub my arm that way with my coffee cup.

So to summarise accidental spitting whilst wearing braces is a common hazard and there is not much you can do about it. Just embrace it, apologise or explain if you feel the need, but really most people just don't notice or pretend not to.

Friday, 12 October 2012

The Joy of Braces - Public Speaking

Guess what!? I'm not horribly upset and sad any more! Yaaaaaaay! I'm feeling a lot better and with the help of my wonderful man, brother, friends and fellow bloggers I'm not feeling so self conscious any more and I'm feeling a bit more positive. Less of a horrible troll and more of a cute caterpillar getting ready to turn into a butterfly. 

Anyway, with my renewed self esteem and my regular levels of positivity fully restored I've decided to write a series of posts about my experiences so far living with braces, the adjustments you make, maintenance & cleaning, the difficulties, the funny times, the good times etc and it will be entitled The Joy of Braces. So here is number 1! 

The Joy of Braces - Speaking

Speaking with braces is something that I have had to get used to, not just once, but many, many times over. As my teeth move it adjusts my bite, my mouth shape and size, where my tongue goes, how my lips move, where my lips sit, how they form certain words or sounds, any sore spots or ulcers/cancer sores also affect all of the above.

Now I do have to say I probably notice this much more than anybody else does. needless to say it can be frustrating and quite tedious at times having to re-think how to move your mouth and pronounce certain words or sounds over and over again. 

I had lots of fun with this on Monday and Tuesday, I held an International Distributor conference on the 8th and 9th of this month. We had distributors from all over the world attend and for many of them English wasn't their first language, I had to do several public speeches and discuss my work and hold discussion sessions. 

I'm quite a confident public speaker really, but at times my braces get the better of me and I can sound a bit lispy and fumble through certain sounds. I was conscious that some of my visitors would struggle to understand me so I took my time, spoke slowly and most importantly I practised my speech beforehand and went over the words or sounds that I stumbled on. In the end I was fine, I felt much more relaxed because I had practised and I felt much more confident about pronouncing certain sounds than before. 

My top tip is to speak slowly, when presenting people often speak quickly without even realising it. It must be a sub-conscious thing of " Oh my god, get me off this stage, I'll speak quick then I can go" It makes it harder, you get tongue tide, flustered then before you know it your spitting everywhere and sound like daffy duck!

 By breathing and slowing down what your saying, it gives us brace wearers a bit of extra time to get our mouths around the braces and the words!

Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Moving teeth and changing moods

After my miserable couple of weeks I resorted an old faithful technique that always cheers me up. A trip to the hairdressers!

For me a trip to the hairdressers usually takes about 3-4 hours, (I'm not a natural blonde) So that time is my time to be pampered, to have a good old chat to my hairdresser, to read trashy magazines, to have a head massage, to relax and to just do nothing for 3-4 hours and come out looking fabulous.

It was lovely, but the hairdresser high was well and truly gone by about 6pm and I was again feeling rather sad and miserable. I just cant seem to shift this negative, sad, miserable feeling that I have at the minute, the good news is I've stopped crying for no reason at work (thank god!) but I just don't feel like myself. I'm a rather upbeat, positive, can-do kind of girl and I haven't been any of those things over the last month or so.

Then yesterday it dawned on me, I have been on a new contraceptive pill. The bloody pill has been messing with my hormones, I had a look at my patient leaflet and some of the side effects are low self esteem and depression.

Now I'm not saying that this pill is the reason why I dislike my face or why I have been struggling with the whole Orthognathic surgery process recently, I think that is to be expected and I'm sure I will have many more moments of panic, upset, and questioning if I have done the right thing or not. Yes I think there will be  much more of that to come over the next year or so!

I think this pill and the change in my hormones has just made it harder for me to pick myself back up, shake off all the negative thoughts and feelings and put on my positive happy face again. I'm off to the doctors on Thurs to try a different one and hopefully I will be feeling back to normal again.

In more jaw/teeth related issues, my bite has been moving like crazy over the last week. The connection between my top and bottom back teeth seems to be changing daily, my mid line is way off and my jaw is all sore and aches, I'm waking up really clenching my jaw again. Just realised that in all my misery I completely forgot to update on my last tightening!

Mid Line Movement - 4 Months

Mr O'Neil said he was (and I quote) very happy with the movements considering I've only had my braces on for a short amount of time. I had a thicker top wire put in, no change to my bottom wire, just another ligature added. He said that my wisdom tooth holes were healing really well and on my next tightening he thinks he will add brackets to my very back teeth to start moving them. So rather positive all round! My teeth were much more sensitive and sore for a couple days after than last time, but I'm sort of glad that it hurt, feels like the braces are doing something!

Who'd of thought the wimp would ever say that!

Monday, 24 September 2012

Orthognathic surgery woes

Well it turns out I'm not as big and strong about all this as I make out I am. I've been umming and aahing about posting this for a few days but this blog is meant to be about my experience through braces and double jaw surgery to correct my underbite, and all the highs and lows that come with it. So I should be honest and brave and discuss the difficult times, as well as the good.

This last week or so I have been struggling with this whole process, I've been feeling rather sad and miserable actually. It all came to a head after I saw myself on TV last Thursday.

I thought I had conquered my worries about being seen in braces with my big chin and how I would be perceived etc but it turns out that I hadn't. It's actually a lot harder than I thought, and although to a certain extent I have accepted the way I look and I do always try to remain positive and "let go" of any horrid comments that are thrown my way it is an entirely different story when you come to try and forget all of the negative things that you and others have associated with your face/jaw/teeth.

So I watched my (albeit brief) appearance on TV with my dad, and I was utterly horrified at what I saw. It was shot at the dreaded side angle and showed my large chin and horrible underbite in all it's glory. My Dad was very proud of my appearance on TV and gave me a great big hug and my Mum shouted down from upstairs how good it was etc but all I was thinking was

"I look absolutely awful, look at the size of my chin, I cant believe I walk around and communicate with people looking like that. Why hasn't somebody told me how much worse I look now, why hasn't Ben dumped me yet? I'm not surprised people call  me names and make comments, I look bloody horrible." 

All I wanted to do was go upstairs and get into bed and cry, but it was my Mum's birthday and we had dinner reservations to get to in 15 mins. I did go upstairs and cried for 5 mins while I tried to pick something to wear, pulled myself together and put my make up on and went out for dinner. All night I just couldn't shift my negative thoughts about myself and felt so self concious and horrible. I got in and cried myself to sleep. 

I went into work the next day and spent most of the day either crying in the toilet or fighting back tears at my desk. (Thankfully most of my co-workers leave at midday on a Friday so I was able to cry at my desk in private) I just felt so embarrassed, so embarrassed that I look like I do, and so angry that I was feeling that way about myself. I had made myself feel so bad, I had done it to myself. I emailed my brother in Paris this; 

Hey Biff 

Don't get excited, i haven't got any dates yet! buuuuuuuut have a look at this girls blog. She has had jaw surgery and has put up some before and after pictures. http://rosasjawsurgerystory.blogspot.co.uk/
They are amazing! I hope I look as good as her when i have my surgery. I hope I don't come out looking like a monster! 

I'm having a bit of a crap time at the min, feel really gross and ugly and that my giant chin is even gianter! I know it all has to get worse before it gets better but I'm fed up. I forget that the way i look isn't normal and that I'm a bit ugly really. I was on bbc look east last night, they interviewed me at work about some funding i won the company and to do with Northamptonshire being voted the most enterprising place in Britain. I was only on for a couple of seconds but they shot it at an angle that i don't often see myself, because it's a bit of side angle and its bloody awful lol my profile has got worse since I've had my braces on, my chin/lower jaw does jut out more and because they are pulling my top teeth back in it's making it look worse, like the difference in length of my top and lower jaw. 

I guess it was just a bit of a shock to see really. I forget what i look like. 

Sorry to un load all this on you biff, i don't feel like i can talk to mum or dad, and i don't really want to point out to Ben how ugly i am. Oh well, not much i can do really till i have my operation, just gotta carry on and look to the future and all that shit :-)

At least i get to come and see you soon anyway! Looking forward to it! Hope your ok, 

love you lots! xxxxxx

I got a lovely reply from him, I wont publish it all but I've read and re-read these sentences and I'm going to keep reading them till I stop crying and being so hard and horrible to myself and pull myself out of this negative frame of mind I'm in at the minute. 

I'm so sorry I've only just got this. Tash you break my heart, you are not at all ugly with or without braces and a moving chin. Just remember you are doing this to feel ultimately better with yourself at the end, so try practicing feeling better about yourself now so you're ready for it :) haha.

So thank you Biff if you're reading this, I'm still currently sat at work feeling horrible about myself and trying not to cry but you're very wise words will work soon enough. This process is full of ups and downs and I think I've hit my first of probably many downs. 

I know in my heart that I have made the right decision to go through with this process, it will benefit me considerably in so many ways, I just struggle from time to time to come to terms with it and the changes that are happening and will happen. I struggle with the demons that I thought I had overcome, as they seem to be rearing their ugly heads from time to time. I guess I didn't expect this. The NHS Orthognathic Surgery DVD didn't bloody tell me about all this! :-) 

Thursday, 20 September 2012

Living with braces as an adult

This is something that I've touched on in earlier posts but due to today's events at work I thought about this a bit more, and felt like sharing it.

I work as a Marketing Executive for a company that manufactures and sells, liquid applied, peelable protective coatings. These coatings can be used in so many different ways from protecting windows and doors on a construction site to acting as a nuclear contaminant tie-down. I am just about to launch a new product for the chemical milling industry and as a part of this launch I managed to secure some funding from my local council and their enterprise partnership company.

As a result of this I've been promoting our company and the funding and have had to do several live radio interviews. As an adult with braces I can't let them get in the way of my work, I just have to be professional and get on with it. However as most people with braces will now that your teeth are always moving, and my speech can change on a daily basis, so it's not always so easy to speak without tripping up over certain words or sounding lispy. But I did it and the interviews have gone well, I have listened back and I didn't sound too lispy or stupid so I was fairly pleased and felt quite good.

Then this afternoon my brace insecurities and my insecurities about how I look came flooding out. I was called by our region's TV news programme and asked if they would be able to come to our offices and interview me about the new product and the funding. I said,

"Yes, of course, come over I would be delighted!" 

I hung up the phone and actually thought;

"Oh ****, what the hell am I going to do, everyone watching it will be looking at me and laughing. Laughing at the girl with the big chin and braces on TV."

I went through to my boss and we started planning the interview, what I would say, what i wouldn't say etc and while we were sat there I decided that I had to do the interview, it's my job, but also that I had to do the interview for me. I had to put myself out there on TV in all my big chin, lipstick wearing woman, adult in braces glory and accept that for the time being this is the new me. I'd learnt to accept myself and my large chin and my underbite a while ago, but I guess, if I'm honest, I hadn't quite yet accepted the new me with the large chin, underbite and braces. 

So I re-applied my lipstick and off I went to do my interview. It went well, it wasn't live thankfully, so hopefully they can edit it together nicely. I really hope I don't come across a complete idiot!

I shall mark this day in my Orthognathic Surgery diary as the day I accepted the new me with braces.

Accepting I'm an adult with braces.

Monday, 17 September 2012

3 months and 3 weeks in braces

I'm almost at the 4 month mark, yaaaay! Over the last couple of weeks my braces have been a right pain in the bum! My bottom teeth are moving and as a result my lower braces keep cutting up my bottom lip. I'm shovelling the wax on them to try and prevent any further cutting/rubbing and I'm convinced that my local Boots Pharmacy think I'm either addicted to Bonjela or have a trio of teething children at home.

However, no pain no gain! I do have my wimpy days and get fed up and moan and get all teary as my ever suffering boyfriend knows oh too well! (Sorry Ben!) But I am having more strong, brave, just bloody well get on with it Natasha days, so I am hopeful that by the time I do have my surgery I will not be such a wimp about the little things.

In preparation for that long awaited day, I am considering facing my completely irrational fear of getting my ears pierced. Yes, I'm 24 years old and I don't have my ears pierced because I'm scared it will hurt. I know what your thinking, you big, great, giant, wimp it doesn't even hurt! But I am a big, great, giant, wimp and it probably does hurt, but I'm giving it some good thought and I will keep you all posted.

I'm getting my braces tightened tomorrow, I'm rather excited actually and I'm looking forward to creeping a step closer to my surgery. Hopefully Mr O'Neil will be pleased with my progress and that my wisdom teeth holes are almost closed up. I'm hoping that I will get my bottom wire changed this time as last time he said that my bottom teeth were still moving, I could wiggle them around with my tongue! I cant do that any more, so bring on the new wire.

 Here are some updated pictures of my progress!

3 months in braces

That bottom lip is sticking out more and more!

My long lower jaw

Check out that underbite!

I'm amazed at how straight my teeth are after 3 months in braces

Still smiling 3 months and 3 weeks on

Monday, 10 September 2012

I strongly dislike my braces

I'm rather fed up of braces at the moment. They have been cutting up my lip for the last week and it hurts and I'm fed up. Usually the sore bit of lip or cheek toughens up after a couple of days and some wax on the offending braces.
Not this time! No, my braces are currently working their way through the mountain of wax I have applied and continuing through my lip.
They just won't stop!
Why can't braces have rounded corners, it would stop all this annoyance and pain.

Wednesday, 5 September 2012

3 Months in Braces

I have been so busy this last couple of weeks that I completely missed my 3 month in braces anniversary! Oooops! At the start of all this everyone was telling me it will go so quick, you wont even notice it, time will fly by, before you know it you will be recovering from your operation... and such. Every time I would hear such a comment I would smile and say "yes, I'm sure it will fly by" but actually I was thinking "No it bloody wont! It will take a year or more and it will feel like a year or more!"

Truthfully, the first month, felt like a month in braces, it was a steep learning curve! Since then it has gotten easier as the weeks have gone by. I am used to them now and don't notice them so much as I did at the start, I'm used to cleaning them and choosing appropriate foods, eating with them etc so I don't consciously think about them. I wouldn't say time is flying by, but it is has passed quicker than I thought.

I'd say the biggest annoyance about wearing braces and this process is that my speech is constantly changing. Just as I begin to learn how to say certain words or sounds and how to move my mouth and tongue to not sound or look like an idiot, my teeth move, only ever so slightly but it changes everything. Then I start over, learning the words that make my lisp worse, remembering which sounds make me spit at people, (gross I know but it happens) and how to move my mouth around the braces. It is a complete pain in the bum but, it's necessary in order to get my bite fixed, it isn't forever, and I just have to persevere and be patient.

My wisdom teeth holes are slowly but surely closing up, I still get food stuck in them which is annoying but I can blast them clean using my waterpik with minimal bleeding now, so that helps no end! My bottom teeth seem to be moving into the free space, I'm not sure. I'll have a good picture session tonight and post them up tomorrow to compare the before wisdom tooth surgery to after.

My next brace tightening is fast approaching, 13 days to go! I'm rather excited about this one, last time Mr O'Neil didn't change the wire on my bottom teeth because they were still moving, he just did the top. So hopefully I will get a new wire and get these bottom teeth moving a bit more.

In other wimpish news, I burnt my finger yesterday on my GHD's because of my dog Bertie. (I forgot how much this hurts!) He got lonely downstairs and decided to pay me a visit whilst I was straightening my hair ready for work, he launched himself onto my bed and knocked my finger right into the straighteners. Needless to say he got a good telling off and I handled the burn like a complete wimp and moaned about it all day at work.

Guilty Bertie!

Thursday, 30 August 2012

2 weeks post wisdom tooth surgery

It's been 2 weeks since I had my wisdom teeth removed under general anaesthetic at my local hospital and things are healing rather nicely. I am happy to say that I didn't suffer from any nasty infections during the first week, my friend is a dental nurse and warned me about dry socket, so I was very good at keeping the holes in my gums nice and clean. I did get a bit carried away on day 3, I got the waterpik out and gave the holes a blast.

Not my brightest idea as they started bleeding, I panicked and felt all dizzy and light headed, so sat myself on the bathroom floor with head between my legs, then i realised that that position was making them bleed more so I did a half tilt of the head, and that's how my boyfriend found me 20 mins after I had said I was going to brush my teeth. Sat on the bathroom floor, in my old comfy PJ's, head half upright and half between my legs, looking rather grey, worried and slightly sobbing.

I learnt my lesson and refrained from blasting my extraction sites with my waterpik for a good 10 days.

I was on liquid/mushy food for a couple days, just because of the way my bite is, I eat/chew on my back teeth so it was a bit sore to really eat anything solid for a couple of days. I mainly ate ice cream, jelly, yoghurt, scrambled eggs and tiny bits of bread and drank luke warm coffee. Then I just got fed up with that and ate normal food in really small pieces and carefully mushed it against the roof of my mouth with my tongue.

I'm eating normally now and the holes are slowly closing up, I do get food stuck in them from time to time but my boss told me it took his wisdom tooth holes about a month to heal properly, so only 2 more weeks to go!

The whole process got me really thinking about my double jaw surgey to come, and it really dawned on me how hard it's going to be! It will be such a challenge mentally and physically to recover from a surgery like that, I was getting cabin fever after 3 days off work, I was fed up of just eating soup and yoghurt after 4 days! What on earth am I going to do after my surgery, I'll be on liquid for a lot longer than 4 days!

I know I'm getting way ahead of myself, I've not had my braces on long and surgey will be ages away yet but it all just hit home last week. I am having double jaw surgery one day. I think I forget about it or tend to just push it to the back of my mind and focus on how my teeth are moving rather than thinking of the bigger picture.

I'll have to face it one day, but for now I'm quite happy worrying about wether my braces are cutting up my lips and cheeks up.

Monday, 20 August 2012

The wimp survived wisdom tooth surgery!

Well I did it! I have had wisdom tooth surgery. I have come out the other side with 2 great big holes in my mouth but more wisdom and more belief in me and my clever little brain than I had going in. 

Naturally the night before I couldn't sleep, I was up every hour or so checking the time worrying that I had overslept when in fact I hadn't slept at all! My boyfriend drove me to the treatment centre for 7.30am, and I started to have a little cry and a panic in the car-park, but I pulled myself together and in we went. My boyfriend was only allowed to stay with me in the reception area for about 10 minutes till my name was called and off I had to go up to the ward and sit and wait all by myself till the nurses came to get me for my operation. I was quite upset and nervous as it was my first time in hospital, my first time under general anaesthetic and I was scared and would of liked someone there with me, but that's just the way the NHS do it. You go in and you go out in one morning, no family or friends with you, just you, your horrid, NHS gown and your charming NHS paper pants. Lovely!

So there I was, sat there in my finery looking rather nervous and the girl in the bed next to me was lovely, she told me not to worry, that she had been under loads of times and it was fine, you just fall asleep and then you wake up and it's all over, your not in pain, just sleepy. I started to relax a bit and had a read of my book. My surgeon came round and said hi, said he was glad to see me again and that my teeth looked good. Then the first lot of patients began making there way down to theatre, including my new friend next door. 

After an hour or so the first lot of patients were being wheeled back through the ward, I made an extra special effort to stare at all of them and assess how distressed and in pain they looked so I could prepare myself. To my delight they all looked sleepy, just lying there, chilled out with some blankets around them and an oxygen mask on. I was starting to think to myself;

Yeah, I can do this. It will be fine. It's just like that girl said, you go to sleep, you wake up, your fine. Nobody has been sick, nobody looked upset or anything coming back through. They were just asleep. Nobody was crying out in pain. I'll be fine, yeah, I can do this, just have a little sleep then wake up and go home....... I'll be fine............you can do this Tash...... you will be fine................OH MY GOD! WHAT THE HELL IS WRONG WITH HER!!! WHY IS SHE CRYING!!!! WHY IS SHE HYPER VENTILATING!!! WHY IS SHE BEING HELD DOWN!!!

Yes, much to my complete and utter horror, the lovely girl in the bed next to me, that assured me that going under general anaesthetic was a nice sunny stroll in the park, was clearly not going for a nice sunny stroll in the park. She was walking through a rather dark, horrid forest with monsters in it and she really, really  wanted her Mum. One of the nurses must have noticed my horrified expression and that my hands were reaching for my clothes and came over and told me not to worry, that the girl was just a bit stressed and upset as she went under and those feelings come out when you wake back up again. She told me that she was absolutely fine and she wouldn't even remember getting upset and that I shouldn't worry one bit about that happening to me. 

I was worried, very worried, and was wondering how long it would take me to run home in my gown and paper pants, I was in fight or flight mode, then my brain did something rather amazing. It chose to fight. It chose to keep me and my paper pants sat in that chair, and chose to calm me down, to rationalise what I'd just witnessed and what the nurse had said to me. Me and my wonderful brain came to the conclusion that if I remained calm and only thought about good things then everything would be fine and I would wake up happy and not upset and distressed. 

So that's what I did, I had a good old chat to the nurse as she walked me down to the theatre (we walked past it we were nattering so much) I remained calm as I got on the bed/table and started to think happy thoughts as the anaesthetist tried to insert the IV in my left hand and failed to find a vein, then tried in my right and got one. I carried on breathing calmly and thinking good thoughts as she injected the anaesthetic and as a cold feeling went up my arm. Then she said you will feel sleepy soon, and I did, my eyelids shut and I was asleep.  

I woke up smiling, I was thinking about the same thing as I did when I went to sleep, I had an oxygen mask on for a bit, then I was sat up and had some water and some jelly, the sugar rush from that was amazing! At that point the thing that hurt the most was my throat, from the breathing tube I had, but that was it, it was just like having a really bad sore throat from a cold. I had been given a local anaesthetic too so that I didn't feel any pain when I woke up. How very lovely of them!  

My boyfriend was called and he took me home, I was greeted by my two St Bernard dogs who strangely new I wasn't right and didn't run and jump at me like they usually do, they sniffed at the hand my IV was in a lot and were very calm and quiet actually. I got in to bed and stayed there till the next day relatively pain free. I had ice cream for dinner that night and again for breakfast and dinner the following day. Just one of the many benefits of having your wisdom teeth out; it's acceptable to eat ice cream at any time of the day! 

Tuesday, 14 August 2012

Last sleep with my wisdom teeth

Well this is it wisdom teeth, we have had a good run, but it's time we part ways and make room for a new bite and a new smile.

Thanks for all the wisdom you shared with me. 

I hope the doctors and nurses don't laugh at my slippers, I forgot to get hospital appropriate ones!

Monday, 13 August 2012

2 days till wisdom tooth removal!

Eeeeeek! The scary day is almost here. Now I am fully aware that I'm only going to have 2 wisdom teeth removed and not going in for my jaw surgery and that this surgery is performed all the time and is relatively minor, and that people get put to sleep all the time and they are fine. Even though my brain understands all this information I'm still really scared and worrying away.

I've never been in hospital before, I've never been under general anaesthetic, I've never really hurt myself, I was and still am a very safe person, I stay away from anything that could cause me pain or discomfort, and I have elected to undergo all this treatment that will most defiantly cause me pain and discomfort. Not a very smart move for a wimp! Well this is happening on Wednesday whether I'm feeling 100% ready or not, so I need to get brave and deal with it.

In preparation I've removed my nail polish, (not allowed to wear nail polish during surgery?) and I'm not too happy about that, I wear nail polish 24/7, I change it about 2-3 times a week, and as a result of my nail polish obsession I have slightly discoloured nails as they haven't seen the light of day for quite a long time! So they don't look too good at the minute, need to get one of those whitening pencil things. I've also started my new book by John Irving that I am thoroughly engrossed in so hopefully having a little read of that while I wait to be called through will help calm my nerves. I just need to buy some Corsodyl mouthwash and man the hell up and stop being such a wimp!

The cure to a sore mouth from braces!
My teeth are moving nicely, my underbite is developing rather well so I'm pleased with that. Braces and my cheek had a big fight last week and my cheek lost, rather spectacularly actually, so I went to my friends house and treated us and my sore, swollen cheek to some wine and ice cream on Friday to try and lift our spirits. 

Then on Sunday I had a lovely afternoon out with another friend, and successfully navigated half a warm chorizo salad and half an asparagus, palma ham and mangetout salad, (my friend and I went half and half) without getting it all stuck in my braces and feeling self-concious while eating and talking. So yay for me!

I'm feeling much better about eating out with my braces now. I'm no longer ordering food because it wont get stuck in my braces and it will be easier to eat, I'm ordering whatever I want and accepting that I might have to go to the bathroom after and have a quick brush of the teeth for the not so brace friendly foods.

Friday, 3 August 2012

Wisdom Tooth Pre-Op

I went for my wisdom tooth pre-op on Wednesday 1st at my local NHS hospital. I am a day case patient or "day release" as my dear friend put it :-) so basically I'm in at 7.30am, put to sleep (eeeeeek!!!!) teeth removed, then hopefully fit for my boyfriend to come and pick me up early afternoon.

My pre-op nurse Bev was lovely, very chatty, friendly, wrote my boyfriend a lovely note with some after-care suggestions such as;

  • Tooth fairy money £20
  • Lots of love and pampering
  • Flowers
  • Presents to help with the pain
She did a good job and put me at ease somewhat about the procedure..... until I got home and read the information about general anaesthetic and the effects and the procedure itself, then that lovely wave of panic swept over me and I did what I do best. I cried.

I am rather scared about the whole thing. My biggest fear/worry is having that horrid cannula thing in my hand or arm. I'm not really scared of needles, its having a foreign object in me, in my veins or having something taken out like blood that makes me go all funny. Oh and I'm slightly worried I wont wake up.

Might see if they can put me to sleep another way, or maybe I should be brave and see how I get on. It's meant to be quite quick from putting the cannula in to me falling asleep so I might be fine. Oh I don't know, I'll see how brave I feel on the day.

So I'm trying to control the wisdom tooth surgery fear at the minute, trying not to think about it too much and just think about the positives like taking a step forward in all of this towards my end goal, and that I have a good excuse to buy a couple of new books and indulge in a good read while I'm off work for a couple of days. (The NHS also advises you not to make any important decisions or sign any legal documents for 2 days after your anaesthetic)

It was my 2 month braces anniversary on Tues so I treated my braces and teeth to an extra long clean with both types of orthodontic friendly electric toothbrush heads, with some fancy fluoride rich toothpaste, a good floss with my old rival Superfloss (we are getting on better now) a long blast with my waterpik and a good rinse round with some fluoride rich mouthwash. It was a fun hour!

Monday, 30 July 2012

Jaw ache booooooooo's

Today I have really bad jaw ache, it has developed into neck ache, eye ache and a headache. I get jaw ache now and again, particularly when I'm eating something that requires a lot of chewing, but today is rather horrid as it seems to have taken over my whole head!

I've noticed recently when I wake from sleeping that my jaws are really clenched shut, and often in a different position/alignment than when I'm awake. Has anybody else experienced this during treatment? 

I've taken some ibuprofen to help with the range of aches and pains coming from the shoulders upwards today, but what I would like is a nice hot towel to wrap around my face and jaw to relax it. Actually what I would really like is a face, head and neck massage! 

I think that the NHS should offer these services free of charge to anybody undergoing this treatment and also a big fat chocolate cake (calorie free) and a cute little kitten or a puppy (you can tick box which one you want) delivered to you every time you are feeling miserable about your stupid teeth/jaw/mouth etc. 

I think all of the above would help a great deal and make this whole process a little bit easier. 

Thursday, 26 July 2012

My name's Natasha and I'm a giant, massive, huge wimp!

I have been rather busy lately and unfortunately didn't have a chance to blog about this event until now but on Saturday a letter arrived for me, one that said a bed had been reserved for me on the 15th of August to have my wisdom teeth removed!!! 

My reaction to this letter was as follows;

Oh god, it's too soon! I don't have enough time to prepare myself, how long away is it? What day is that, Wednesday? I'll have to take Wednesday off work. This is going to hurt, I don't want that needle thing in my arm, can they put me to sleep without it? Just give me a tablet to take? I hope they don't mess it up, crap it's only a month away. I don't want to do it, can't they just leave them in. What if i don't wake up. Will I have to take time off work after? I feel sick, I don't want that drip needle thing in my arm, 15th of August, that's only a few weeks away, that's really soon. Oh god I'm scared, I'm really scared. I want my cat. 

 So thankfully I have somewhat calmed down since Saturdays big wimp outburst. I do still have moments of panic when I think about being put to sleep or when I think about what pain I will be in after, or if I will feel sick coming round (I hate feeling sick), or about the 2 giant holes I will have in my gums after.

Despite these moments of panic I am beginning to see this surgery as a positive step, step number 2, towards me having a proper bite and nice teeth. As my lovely Orthodontist said, "Just think of it as a trial run for your double jaw surgery" not sure if those wise words help me to feel better or just create a few more worries and scaredy cat moments!

On Monday I was able to move my wimp focus from the pending wisdom tooth surgery to a more pressing matter, my first brace tightening! So Monday and Tuesday morning was spent worrying about that and feeling rather nervous and anxious, then it was time to leave work and face my fear, go and get my braces tightened!

I was late (a normal occurrence for me, much to the annoyance of my ever waiting family and friends) luckily so was my orthodontist so nobody noticed! He was rather pleased with how quickly my teeth had moved, said they were coming on nicely. I had a thicker wire put on my top teeth, this hurt a little when he was tightening them up but actually not half as much as I thought it would. He left my bottom wire in as my bottom teeth still had some movement in them, he did put a little wire thing around 2 of my brackets, this hurt a bit, they felt much tighter. I don't know what it is or why it's there, but it an absolute food magnet! 

Overall my first brace tightening was not that painful, I'd say on scale of 1 to 10 it came in at 3, my teeth were a bit tender the day after but nothing really to complain about. 

So really I am just a giant, massive, huge wimp that was worried and scared for no reason. I have a sneaky suspicion that my wisdom tooth surgery won't be as bad as I think it will be, and really I will be fine. I have my pre-op on Wednesday 1st August so hopefully the wimp in me won't come out and be a blubbing, scared, mess for the nurse to deal with. Wish me luck! 

Wednesday, 18 July 2012

1st Brace tightening is approaching

Well it has been a week since i got back from my holiday in Malt and I have the post holiday blues. I was sitting in the sun, relaxing, reading a book, sipping some lovely Maltese rose wine just over a week ago enjoying myself and being happy with newly acquired underbite and amazing new t-shirts!

 Now I'm in cold, very wet, windy and grey England counting down till my 1st tightening appointment with my orthodontist (24th of July). I hope he is pleased with how my teeth have moved and that I'm keeping my teeth and braces clean, I'm still obsessed with cleaning them and worrying that my teeth might go all horrid and fall out. I'm due to have my lower wisdom teeth removed at some point, so hopefully I will find out when that is likely to be at this visit.

I hope this tightening isn't going to hurt too much, maybe I should take some ibuprofen before I go, just in case. It did hurt a bit when he was putting the wires in, is a brace tightening similar to that?

In other news my little brother is back from Paris yaaaaay! He's back till the end of the month which is really lucky as I can drag him to my ortho appointment on Tues for moral support. Lucky him!

Sunday, 15 July 2012

The big move!

Whilst I was away on holiday me and braces had a bit of a significant moment...braces has given me a full underbite! My backwards tooth on my lower jaw has finally moved, before braces the backwards bottom tooth and one of my top front teeth used to meet but my other teeth didn't, so i sort of had an underbite apart from these two teeth , giving me a bit of an odd bite. But now that's all changed, good job braces!!!

I am so amazed at how quickly that tooth has moved, it took exactly 4 weeks and 4 days to straighten that tooth out and give me an underbite. Although i am really struggling to bite through/rip any food, I am rather proud of my new bite, it's a big step for me and my mouth and we are a little bit closer to where we want to be.

6 weeks with braces

6 weeks with braces - I have an underbite

6 weeks with braces - backwards tooth is straight!

6 weeks with braces - my underbite is here!

6 weeks with braces - nice and straight top teeth now
6 weeks with braces

I can see that my face is changing and that my bottom lip sticks out a bit more than it used to, (I will apply the lip plumping lipgloss to the top lip only from now on) and my lower jaw seems to be jutting forward a bit more making it a bit more noticeable. I presume that during the course of treatment this will get worse and my lower jaw will become even more prominent and unfortunately may attract even more unwanted attention.

I did have an unwanted attention incident whilst on holiday in Malta, an English couple and their young son decided to have a discussion about the size of my chin and couldn't decide whether i had Bruce Forsyth's chin or Jimmy Hill's chin whilst i was sat opposite them on a bus. (FYI ignorant English couple and your horrid little boy I have Natasha Sephton-Pike's chin and i like it)

 These sorts of comments I have heard many many times before and lots of other comments have been made over the years sometimes to my face, shouted at me as I walk down the street or whispered as i stand near by. It is upsetting and it does hurt when you hear people referring to you like your some kind of freak or an oddity just because you look slightly different, just because I have a larger lower jaw than other people. I did want to say something to that horrid family on the bus, to describe to them in detail the surgery I'm going to have to correct my jaw positioning and size and tell them that people like them are part of the reason why I've chosen to go through this, I wanted to stand there and shout out all of their visible differences and poke fun at them on the bus and see how they like it.

But I didn't, I have learnt over the years that the best thing to do is to just let it go. Leave that incident, that hurt, shame, frustration, anger, tears, leave it all there, just stop take a breath, and leave all of those feelings there and move on, just carry on being me. If I had of said something to that horrid family I would of been carrying around all of those feelings for the rest of the day, the rest of the week, the rest of the month, but because I just let all of those feelings go I enjoyed my day trip round Valletta, eating ice cream, site seeing and having a good time with my boyfriend and enjoying my holiday.

Everybody deals with things in their own way and my "let it go" approach is working for me, when I was younger I didn't let it go, and it really affected me, I really struggled to like me and the way I look. My boyfriend struggled that day to let it go, to not say something to that family, he was really angry and upset that I had to listen and deal with that on my holiday and so was i but it happens and I've learnt that if I don't let it go then it does more damage to me in the long run.

I'm happy with me, my face, how I look, my personality, my life, my choices and it's taken time, a lot of time for me to get to where I am now and to like myself, but I'm here now and It's not going.

I Love Me

Thursday, 12 July 2012

1 month in braces pictures

Well me and my braces (and my man) had a brilliant a time in Malta, and me and braces had a particularly significant moment whilst we were away..... but more about that later!!!

Here are some quick pictures I took before I went away to mark the 1 month anniversary of me and braces getting together, it's been... at times a difficult relationship, but ultimately I know braces has my best interests at heart, so all the cut cheeks, sore teeth and lack of certain foods over the month, it's all forgiven braces!

1 month in braces - still smiling

1 month in braces - current bite

1 month in braces - top front teeth are lining up nicely

1 month in braces - the backwards tooth holding my bite is just clinging on, not quite a full underbite yet!

1 month in braces - starting to see the difference!

Thursday, 28 June 2012

1 month in braces!

Hasn't time flown by! I cant believe I am 1 month into the first phase of getting my underbite fixed. I have had my braces on for 1 month now and I'm amazed by how much my teeth and my bite have changed in this short space of time. My snaggle tooth on top has almost been pulled into a nice and neat formation with my other front tooth and my backwards bottom tooth is almost upright, which means I almost have a proper underbite!!!

I'm pleased to announce that both the wisdom teeth war and braces vs cheek war have ceased. This occurred when a small brave square of chocolate entered no mans land (the tongue) and waved his yummy chocolate flag. They ended up joining forces to destroy the square of chocolate and the subsequent squares that followed. All areas of my mouth are still happy with eachother and currently getting on fine. On Monday there was a slight argument and some teeth were particularly sensitive, so I was reduced to soup and my new BFF Hartleys jelly as it hurt to chew again, but all was resolved by Tuesday.

Braces Best Friend

I've just got to remember that my teeth are being moved and that they will hurt sometimes and I need to be less of a wimp and just take painkillers, eat properly and moan less. I have my braces tightened in 3 weeks so lets see how long that attitude lasts after that!

I am treating my braces to a 10 night stay in Malta on Saturday, so I will update when I'm back. I'm away for my birthday too and I'm so excited to be spending my 24th in the sun with my lovely man, who has been given the task of finding me a birthday cake while we are out there. It's not a proper birthday without a birthday cake!

Wednesday, 20 June 2012

The braces are biting back!

Well so far this week has been rubbish for my mouth, and the outlook for the rest of the week continues to look bleak. My braces are currently having an argument with the left hand side of my mouth, and the braces are winning, quite well I may add!

Something must have moved because all this week they have been cutting in to my cheek and it's rather sore. I woke up this morning and it felt like my cheek and braces were one. Either my cheek had tried to grow over the braces in an attempt to fight back or the braces had hooked on to my cheek and were not that willing to let go. I had a good old look in the mirror and although there are no ulcers (thankfully) it's rather bumpy and cut up, I can see where my cheek it trying to toughen up but it's just not doing it quick enough. The wax that the orthodontist gave me would be brilliant right now but I've obviously put it in a very safe place for when I do need to use it, so safe that I cant remember where!

So I have that war waging on the left hand side of my mouth and on the right hand side my lower wisdom tooth has decided to rear it's ugly head and inflict pain and swelling on my poor unsuspecting gum. I don't know if this happens to anybody else but when I get wisdom tooth pain it seems to manifest itself in other ways too like swollen glands in my neck, sinus pain, headache, jaw ache and a general feeling of being unwell and wanting to stay in bed and eat ice cream all day. I've had to opt for work, ibuprofen and cups of Lady Grey tea instead.

So my poor boyfriend has had to listen to me moaning and whittling on about my mouth and showing him the damaged cheek and making him decipher sentences like; "Lut, lut, an ooo see air de races are atching on ry cheek? Uz it lut rad?!" So sorry Ben for being such a big wimp and trying to talk to you with my mouth open and my fingers in it.

On a very positive note, I'd like to say a huge, ginormous, massive well done to my little brother Matthew who got his degree results today, he passed his degree in French Studies with an outstanding 2:1!!!!!! Well in baby Biff, Je suis très fier de vous! 

Tuesday, 19 June 2012

Waterpik advice

I have requested a waterpik for my birthday but I don't really know a great deal about them; what is a good brand, make or model, what's the best sort to buy and which ones should I avoid? I would prefer something portable for when I'm staying at my boyfriends house or away on holiday, business etc but I don't know if a portable version reduces the effectiveness because it's portable? Me and my mum had a quick look last night and we found some for £50 and some at £150!? And if I use a waterpik does this mean I can stop battling (and loosing) with Superfloss?
If anybody has any advice or recommendations I would be very grateful to hear it.

Wednesday, 13 June 2012

Is she an adult or a teenager?

Yesterday evening I went to a marketing seminar as part of my job, it was a fairly relaxed event mainly made up of local, small business owners that were looking for some advice and guidance. The company I work for had used the company hosting the seminar for bits of marketing before I started, so I went along to see what they were all about and for the free biscuits. However I realised I couldn't eat any biscuits due to the risk of biscuit debris in braces, not good for networking purposes. So i was sat waiting for the seminar to start and a gentleman came and sat next to me, he introduced himself and his business and asked me what I did, so I replied and as I was talking away I noticed him looking at my braces, then my face, then my braces, then at my face.
Now I have experienced this before, some people are more discreet and don't want to make a fuss and others do gawp at your shiny metal teeth. This man was different, he wasn't a full on gawper, I could tell he was trying to be discreet with his looking and then I realised, he wasn't offended or horrified by my braces, he was trying to work me out. I was dressed in smart clothes like an adult, I was at an adult seminar, in an adult business environment, with other adults, but I had braces on, that children and teenagers wear, not adults. He didn't expect to see braces in a business environment. In this man's defence most of the people I spoke to that night did the same thing and tried to hide a confused face.
This was my first business/work related outing with braces and I hadn't expected as much of a reaction as I got, I'm used to them now, my boyfriend, friends, family and work colleagues are too. I suppose I forgot that they were there and people just don't expect an adult to be wearing braces. It's something that we associate with children and teenagers, not adults, and I guess that's why people looked confused because they had all ready formed an opinion/impression of me before I had opened my mouth, (just as I had of them) and when I did, the braces threw that pre-formed opinion/impression of me out the window.
At first my confidence was knocked a bit and I tried to hide my braces when I spoke, but then I thought, what if that man had of opened his mouth to speak and he had a really high pitched voice, I would of pulled the same face that he just did to me, because I wasn't expecting that. So I just got on with it and actually the more confidently I spoke and interacted with other people the less they looked, or maybe I just stopped caring that they were looking, but either way I survived my first corporate event in braces and not being able to eat the biscuits was probably a good thing. I'm going on holiday in 17 days (not that I'm counting) so the bikini is going on, and a biscuit belly probably wont compliment it.
In other news, I almost conquered the super floss last night! Yaaaaay! I read the box properly and started a little earlier and it went rather well. I did get it caught on one of my hooks but it wasn't as bad as last time. I used the proper end to thread under my wires, (sooo much easier by the way) and the special spongey bit was good too and I even had a go on the normal floss. I'll be able to do this flossing lark with my eyes shut soon enough!