Tuesday, 10 December 2013

8 Weeks Post Double Jaw Surgery

Wow, 8 weeks post surgery! I remember when surgery was a little flicker in my mind, the first proper consideration, the panic, the initial research and then off I went on this long old journey!

These last 8 weeks have flown by really, I've been incredibly busy with work and my MBA but I think like throughout all of this you need something else to focus on or you just get consumed by all things teeth and jaw related.

My eating has come on leaps and bounds since my orthodontist gave me the go ahead to start eating. At 2 weeks post op I was  given the green light to eat mush, so things like scrambled egg, mash potato and rice pudding. Things that I could move around my mouth but not chew.

By 4 weeks I could start to try and chew these things and by 4 I was ok to move on to things like soft pasta, ravioli, minced meat etc. From 5 weeks I've just been gradually building up my eating, cutting things up really small and just trying to chew. If its too difficult i just swallow it, but why not have a go is what i thought.

Right now I'm pretty much eating normal food, again any meat I'm cutting up small and trying to chew it, not forcing anything, but eventually my muscles will figure it out and I will get there. I have noticed all ready the vast improvement just on how i chew with my teeth at the back, they actually work properly, I chew efficiently now, which is so nice!

Biting into things is a whole other story, it is so weird! I'm still getting to grips with that. This will sound weird to people that haven't experienced mis aligned jaws and teeth, but I don't know how to bite through something with my teeth. I don't know what the movement is, or how much force to use or if you pull the food away as you bite or do you just bite down and it cuts through? I don't know, I guess it's just practice and really I have to stop a habit of a lifetime and stop cutting things up, I need to start biting into things to get my muscles going and learning how to do it. I've cut things up instead of biting through for so long it's second nature, but that could be my news years resolution, no cutting food! Just biting food!

Swelling & Numbness
My swelling is so very minimal right now, I still think i'm slightly puffier on my right side than my left, but that will go down with time, I notice it but i guess others probably don't. I'm still numb on my left hand side of my chin and bottom lip. I am getting tingle and pain and a very annoying sensation every time i eat something liquid like yoghurt or ice cream or even have a drink, where it feels like running water or that i've just dribbled it all out my mouth and down that left hand side of my chin.

My ortho tells me its a good sign, so i'm sure I can put up with it for as long as it takes so long as i get my feeling in my lip back. Not too fussed about my chin, just want my lip back. its not nice kissing and not feeling it! Plus putting lipstick or lipbalm on feels strange!

Orthodontist & Teeth
Every time i go back to see my orthodontist he was very pleased with the way my teeth are lining up and how I'm doing. At 4 weeks I had my power chain adjusted on my bottom teeth to help close some gaps up. At 6 weeks I had my lower wire changed, an extra long 8 chain power chain fitted on the bottom and a chain on the top to close a gap that had formed over the last 2 weeks. This was painful and I can honestly say, hand on my heart that the pain from the orthodontics both before and after surgery was far worse than any "pain" i felt after my surgery and during recovery. Surprisingly enough moving teeth hurt me more than moving bone did.

On my last appointment at 6 weeks out, my orthodontist said that I can expect to have my braces removed in 6-8 weeks! wahooooooo! There was no way i saw that coming! my next appointment is in 7 weeks, so I guess we will have a look and see where i am. I'm so surprised by how quickly after surgery my braces will be coming off, I think it just highlights the importance of having a good orthodontic treatment before your surgery, and that it pays to be patient and get your teeth right (the wrong way round) before surgery, because it just makes it all a whole lot smoother after.

How I feel about my face

To be honest I've been a bit naughty and i haven't really looked at my face a lot, like really scrutinised it. Obviously when i did the before and after pictures in my last post I saw what a big change there was, but i think i'm scared to look closely at myself in case i don't like it. But I do like it, maybe I'm scared that I will change back to how i used to look? I'm not sure on this one. I am really happy and pleased with how I look and I think the team have done such a good job and I don't think i will hear any nasty comments again.

Maybe my problem is that I'm not ready to embrace my new appearance and let go of the past and how I felt about my face before. Yes i came to love my face the way it was but I was never 100% happy with my appearance because of the problems I had with eating and with being called names. I still wait/brace myself for someone to say something about my face when I'm out and about. Nobody has made a comment since my operation, so I'm hoping that this is something that will fade over time, and I wont think about it any more.

Any Advice for before and after?

  1. Be patient - it takes ages, all of it, the braces, the wisdom teeth removal, the surgery, the recovery, but at each stage there are lots of little moments of joy that make it all worth while, like when my underbite was fully developed or when I first noticed how straight my teeth were getting.
  2. Get a waterpik/oral irrigator - I hate flossing, i did before my braces and I did with them and I probably will still hate doing it after my braces are off. My waterpik has been amazing in helping me keep my teeth clean and my gums healthy. It's not a substitute for flossing but it sure as hell makes my life so much easier! 
  3. Take pictures! - Take so many pictures of your teeth and your face, especially before you even get your braces on. I wish I had taken more before pictures because it is so bloody wonderful to be able to go back and see how much improvement has been made. It keeps you happy when it gets tough, to see how far you have come.
  4. Keep family and friends close - It is tough, it is hard, expect to be sad, frustrated, worried, scared but expect to be happy and excited too. It's so helpful to have family and friends with you to support you through all of this. They may not get you 100% but they will be there and so will this wonderful community of bloggers!
  5. Smile!!!! - Keep on smiling, you are doing the right thing and you will get through it. You smile and the world smiles with you! Show off your bracey teeth, be proud and be bracey! 

Monday, 2 December 2013

Double Jaw Surgery Results - Underbite is gone!

Hey all!

So I've been really busy with work and uni work and all the other stuff I do, so apologies for not blogging much. But here is a good old picture upload! Because pictures is what we all love best!

I will find some time this weekend to write up my journey  so far, but in the mean time here are some pictures. Now I do have to say they are pretty amazing. as i was putting them together i was just laughing because i still cant believe that that change has happened and i look how i look now, and that I used to function pretty well how i used to look and how my teeth were. It really is just incredible what my orthodontist and my surgeon has done. so big massive thank you them both.

I am a very happy lady! Much bracey love to all xxxxx

P.S the after pics below were taken at me 6 weeks out. I just did my hair different one day. xxxx

Before & After Double Jaw Surgery
Before & After Double Jaw Surgery
Before & After Double Jaw Surgery

Before Surgery - Underbite
After Surgery to correct underbite
Before Surgery - Class 3 malocclusion

After Orthognathic Surgery

Recovery day 1 - 14
Recovery day 1 - 14

Before & After Teeth

I have proper teeth!!!!!!

Sunday, 10 November 2013

2 & 3 Weeks Post Double Jaw Surgery

Just a quick update on my recovery so far...

At 2 weeks i was granted the most wonderful freedom of being able to remove my bands and eat mushy food such as scrambled egg, mash potato, yoghurt etc. No chewing, just pressing food against  the roof of my mouth, which is still kind of numb as are bits of my tongue.

This was wonderful and such a relief as I was well and truly sick of the liquid diet. It did feel strange at first and took me a while to figure out how to use my tongue and to move my lips round a form or spoon, but practice makes perfect.

My numbness hadn't really changed much at 2 weeks. I was sleeping on my front/side and propping my head up a bit. Taking my bands off also gave me the opportunity to have a really good clean of my mouth. It wasn't pretty at all! But over the course of the rest of the week i was able to remove all sort of disgusting debris!

My biggest concern was my speech, i was really struggling to pronounce words and sounds with my new mouth shape. I kept getting stuck on the sound and a few others. I also started working from home at 2 weeks, hence my lack of blog updates!

At 3 weeks I am able to start to chew soft foods, like really over cooked pasta, ravioli, minced meat etc. This has been lovely and I have found that most soft food is manageable as is anything cut up small enough. The actually process of chewing was again really hard to start with, i didn't know what to do, or how to move my mouth or tongue but it has gotten easier the more i try.

I dont chew everything i eat, again its all rather soft or small so i can jut swallow it if i like. My nerves are coming back to life in my mouth and teeth and they have been a bit sore. I can feel my braces pulling on my teeth again, that pressure you feel after an adjustment.

My dead lip/chin has been tingling so that is a good sign, although i do have quite a large lump developing under that side of my chin, so when i go to my ortho appointment next week I will mention it. Probably nothing, but best get it checked.

I have started back at work, it has been good to get back into the office but I really must be more organised and prepared with my meals, I think I'm loosing weight again. I lost 6 pounds in the first 7 days after surgery, nothing more over the following 7 but I think i have lost weight since. I don't own a set of scales so im not 100% sure but i can see it in my clothes, my mum bought hers round so I will have to go over an weigh myself this week.

I think the best thing to do is to

a) Get up earlier and eat breakfast
b) Be more prepared and take meals to eat at work
c) Have fortisip/complan in between a meal to boost my calorie intake.
d) Eat a birthday cake every evening for dinner!

Here are some updated pictures!

My man's way of keeping my weight up! yum yum!

Wednesday, 30 October 2013

Double Jaw Surgery Recovery - Days 10-12

Day 10 Post Op Recovery - Saturday 26th

I had a lovely lie in with my man this morning, I am getting better at sleeping on my side and position my pillows to hold up my head whilst not putting pressure on my face. It's a fine art i'm getting good at. So this means that i can kind of snuggle in and have a proper cuddle, which is lovely because I do like a cuddle and i really miss being able to be close to friends and family. I always feel tense when someone goes to hug me or kiss me or are just generally near my face. I'm in fear of being bashed and my jaws getting hurt.

This afternoon my wonderful friend Stacey and her daughter came round to carve pumpkins! It was so lovely to see them and my friends daughter (she's 5) said that i looked different, but good different and that I was talking funny, like i was growling. Which she found hilarious. So we explained to her again why Aunty Tasha was talking funny and using straws to eat etc (which she insisted on doing too) and she got it in the end, wasn't phased at all. I was worried I would scare her, but thankfully I have had virtually no bruising and my swelling hasn't been too bad either.

After pumpkin carving, we went for a little walk down to a local park to play on the swings, it was nice to get some fresh air and be out and about. Here is my friends amazing pumpkin creation, she has a real talent for this!

As i am getting so bored of my shake and soup diet I decided to mix it up a little and throw some custard in to the mix. It went down really well, i had to thin it out with some milk to get it up the straw but it was lovely, I had 2 bowls!

Day 11 Post Op Recovery - Sunday 27th

Today was a bit of a cleaning and washing day, i feel really good that I have enough energy to be doing the hoovering and sorting washing etc. Glad to get some normality back in my life, even if it is doing chores! I am fine bending over to picks things up, I don't feel any pressure building in my jaw or nose area at all.

In terms of numbness and tingles, not much has changed. I think I'm getting less tingles than i was a few days ago on my numb left side, but they come and go. I have had a few weird itches where my chin or lip feels like it needs itching but then when i go to i cant quite feel that bit of my face so i cant scratch it properly. Its strange! My bottom lip on my right hand side still feels sore when i touch it or when i kiss, i think its nerves coming back to life so it's a good thing and it's not an unbearable pain.

Pain wise, I dont have a lot. I sometimes take the equivalent to 2 tablets of ibuprofen in the evening if i feel a bit ache and sore but that's it. I've started to notice some sensitivity in my teeth and a bit more feeling occasionally in my gums and roof of my mouth so that's a good sign

Tonight i sat like a drooling dog and watched Lee eat his dinner. I'm so bored of liquid and it hasn't even been 2 weeks. Thursday cant come quick enough! I made some jelly because i thought i might be able to suck it through my teeth, i was wrong. It did however provide Lee some entertainment, watching me trying to poke jelly down the side of my mouth towards my back teeth and just getting jelly everywhere instead.

We then played eat like i eat and he had a go at drinking/eating things through a straw which was good fun. I feel very lucky to have him, he is so understanding and patient and brilliant. My mum and dad have been brilliant too, taking me places, keeping me fed and helping with dishes etc.

Some advice for any readers who are pre surgery, during recovery I really feel that you really need someone there to call on to help build you back up and cheer you up when you get fed up of soup or fed up of not being able to sleep properly or speak properly. Now whether that's a friend, family, partner, dog, cat whatever it doesn't matter, so long as you have someone you can contact when it gets tough. It's pretty easy to slip into negativity during this recovery process.

You build up to this surgery for so long, with the promise of everything being fixed and brilliant. And it will be, it's just that the recovery is a lot like the bit before surgery, it takes time. It's like before surgery you have your braces, extractions etc to get your teeth ready for your jaws to be moved. Then after surgery you have your mouth banded, liquid food etc to get your mouth and teeth ready for its new position, its new role as a fully functioning set of teeth and jaws. It takes time but I know it will be worth it in the end.

Day 12 Post Op Recovery - Monday 28th

I need an Internet shopping block! Recovery is costing me money!!! Particularly because it's almost Christmas! sort of. I'm really excited for Christmas, it's my shining light at the end of a jaw surgery recovery tunnel. I think by Christmas i should be able to enjoy my Christmas dinner, maybe not the obligatory bar of toblerone just yet, but most of the other Christmas goodies I'm sure ill be able to manage somehow! I'm also looking forward to my first Christmas in my house, getting all the decorations and tree up, it will be lovely!

My mum and dad took me out to a home ware shop today to get some bits for my sister as she is moving into her house in a couple weeks! It's funny talking to people outside of the family like shop assistants or the post man because obviously something is different about the way i talk and the way i look, they know it, i know it. I don't feel embarrassed, maybe a bit self conscious but i guess i feel like i should explain why I'm talking like this. I don't know why.

I also bought some new nail polish, i do have a bit of an obsession with my nails, and did this Halloween inspired look. There are some seriously amazing Halloween nails out there, like spiders and pumpkins, my free hand skills aren't that good yet, but practise makes perfect!

Halloween Nails

Another bowl of soup for dinner, and another shake for desert. Only 3 days till Thursday, till i hopefully will be allowed to eat mush. Yay!

This song has been my surgery jam and reminds me of my brilliant brother who although he hasn't been able to be here I know he has been cheering me on from Paris, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uvb-1wjAtk4  cant wait to see you soon Bif! xxxxx

Monday, 28 October 2013

Day 9 Post Double Jaw Surgery Pics

Here are some pictures of me 9 days post op!

And I also have the energy and concentration to play with my nails now and make pretty nail art patterns! What a good sign! 

Double Jaw Surgery Recovery - Days 7-9

Day 7 Post Op Recovery - Wednesday 23rd

So 1 week ago I was very scared and apprehensive because it was the day of my operation! And a week on I have absolutely no regrets. Yes the recovery is hard, and it's long, frustrating and boring but so was the bit before it. All the adjustments and cut up lips and cheeks, sore teeth, sore and achey jaws. The whole damn thing is long! But, the reward at the end of all this is fabulous, and I can see one massive reward all ready. I have teeth that are the right way round. I can get a good look in my mouth now, and my teeth look brilliant, I'm so pleased.

Food wise, still on the liquid. My meals generally consist of a fortisip or a complan shake for breakfast, soup for lunch and dinner and a shake of some sort for snacks. I'm sort of drinking coffee, but it's not the same through a syringe.
My Liquid Diet

The syringes are driving me mad! I cant manage a straw yet, just haven't got enough suction/ mobility in my lips and mouth yet. Roll on Friday for my visit with Mr O to get my wafer out.

My dad took me to the doctors today to hand in my discharge note, and just over the road from the doctors is  a nice little boating lake, so we went for a walk round there. It was nice to be out and getting some fresh air, even if we were lapped by a yummy mummy and some OAP's power walking!

My mouth is still getting really dry, it happens about 7/8pm and then talking becomes really difficult and hard work because i cant move my lips, they feel stuck almost. It feels like a mixture of having too much peanut butter in your mouth and being really parched, desperate for water after a hard workout. Horrible is the word to describe it. Will speak to Mr O about it on Friday.

Day 8 Post Op Recovery - Thursday 24th

Another lazy day today really. Just mooched about the house with my dad most of the morning. I was having another good look in my mouth this morning and I found my stitches. They aren't that bad really. I thought it would look really gross all bloody and crusty and bits of mouth up in there and that I would feel sick and feint when I saw them. But surprise surprise it wasn't as bad as I thought it would be! They are just nice neat little stitches, they look like little bits of cotton in my mouth. I can see the one at the top under my top lip and the one they used to do my chin in my bottom lip. I think they are dissolve ones because Mr O hasn't mentioned taking them out.

In the Afternoon I went to my mum and dads for a change of scenery, and I had to pack myself up a little bag of things i would need. I felt like i was about to leave the house with a baby. I put wet wipes in for those inevitable spills and drools, 4 syringes, 2 bottles of food aka fortisip drinks, some liquid ibuprofen, vaseline, and tissues.

It was nice being out of my house and to see my parents dogs again, they were good with me and didn't knock me, which was a miracle, they are so clumsy and stupid, must be in the St Bernard breed. I wouldn't want either of them coming to rescue me up a mountain, they'd get distracted and forget!

In the evening My mum and dad took me to a group that I volunteer at called PHAB, they had sent me a get well card while i was in hospital so I wanted to say thank you. I didn't go for a month before my operation, I had so much on at work, it was just too much to do. so it was amazing to see them all again. I felt so lucky to be part of such an amazing group of people, so kind and caring and I really realised just how much i missed them all. I got all emotional when I left. I was only there for half an hour but it tired me out quite a bit.

I am going to try and sleep on my side tonight, I cant sleep on my back any more, I've had enough. I'm going to create some sort of head and neck support with pillows but leave my face. I'll try anyway!

Day 9 Post Op Recovery - Friday 25th 

I managed to sleep on my side! It took me ages but i got it right in the end. Lots of tossing and moving around various shapes and sizes of pillows but I got there. I didn't sleep right through the night but much better than before.

I went so see my Ortho today to have my wafer removed! Yay! It was a brilliant appointment.

Mr O was pleased with how my teeth were looking, he wanted to take some pictures of my wafer in as it was a special kind of one that had been created for me and he wanted to use it and my mouth as an example for his students. I'm always happy to help others learn so agreed for the pictures to be taken. It was a bit more painful than i had first anticipated. He had to use the cheek retractor things but it is very difficult to get them in when you cat open your mouth and your cheek/mouth movement is limited. The plastic was pushing against an incision point on my top gums and that hurt, but it was only for a minute or two so it was bearable.

Once the pictures were done Mr O took my stitches out on the side of my face. they were tiny little things. I was really scared about that, thought it would hurt, but i didn't feel a thing, came out so easy. the first one i didn't even no he had done it!

Then came to wafer removal! first he un banded me, then un banded my wafer and asked me to relax my jaw and let it drop a bit. Now what a strange and exciting feeling that was. I opened a bit, then a bit more, and a bit more. It didn't hurt, it was a tint bit achey but to be honest the excitement of opening my mouth was all I could focus on.

Then we took some more sore pictures with the wafer in but not attached, then the big removal was ready! He asked me to open my mouth and I did, bit by bit. Not bit by bit because I was stiff or anything but more because I didn't know how wide I was opening my mouth. It felt like a lot but it wasn't. Anyway then Mr O just pulled the wafer out and there we go. No wafer! He let me sit up and rinse my mouth out. Then he said I was free for 5 mins.

So I just kept opening and closing my mouth. It was the most strangest and brilliant feeling in the world. My teeth touched, all of them, my back teeth I really noticed. Then I went to say " Oh my god Dad this is so weird" but got to "Oh my go..." when I realised that my mouth was different, the way i move my mouth was different and the words didn't sound right, the syllables and the way i annunciated was different, all wrong. It was so odd. I tried again and it came out, but it still felt strange. I just kept talking and saying my teeth touch, my teeth touch, then i started crying, my dad started welling up, the dental nurse too. It was honestly such an amazing experience and feeling. Something that so many take for granted, but that I and many others have waited to experience for so long.

Then I had to relinquish my freedom and be banded up again. Mr O said to come back next Thursday, where he will change my bands again and this time I will be able to take them off to eat mushy food! Yaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaay!!!!!! I am so excited to be able to eat mush! He also said I should find it easier to use a straw now, so hopefully I can say bye to syringes soon enough.

Oh and I told him about my dry mouth and he said it was strange, never had anyone complain of  a dry mouth before. My mouth looked healthy and clean, so just keep an eye on it and let him know how i get on and my next appointment.

Day 9 Post Op

Wednesday, 23 October 2013

Double Jaw Surgery Recovery - Days 4-6

Day 4 Post Op - Sunday 20th

Sunday was a new day. I'd felt so awful and miserable on Saturday and spent most of it crying and feeling sorry for myself, but something changed on Sunday. I was new women! I started my day with an apricot flavour fortisip smoothie (was rather nice actually) and had my usual antibiotics. Then my friend Stacey came round and it was great to see her and to catch up. I was talking much better and feeling much better. I felt normal, like I did before my operation.

I think it's the small things that I could do before surgery, that i didn't even consider, that i miss the most and that frustrate me and had made me feel so un normal and miserable in the days previously. Things like this;

  • licking my lips
  • hugging someone (a proper bury your face in their shoulder or neck hug)
  • kissing my man (i cant feel my bottom lip)
  • laughing
  • smiling
  • sleeping on my stomach
  • having a hot cup of coffee (i'm only able to syringe it in, warm and its not the same!)

But having Stacey round and talking about her holiday and what's been going on with our friends, just made me feel normal again, made me realise that all this struggle and annoyance and difference is only temporary and I can still do some things that I did before.

That evening while I was getting another fortisip smoothie down me I asked my man why i needed to eat during my recovery. (I know it sounds like a strange question but stay with me here!) My man is a scientist you see, so I wasn't asking him that question for the boyfriend "so you get better baby" response, I needed the science, the facts as to why, even though I was sick of syringing in liquid 5ml at a time over and over and over again, many times a day i had to keep it up, do it more even.

It really helped me to get over my reluctance to persevere through the boredom and frustration and to actually fill myself up! And the one thing he said that i didn't know was that your body needs fuel in order for you have a good nights sleep. Although you are resting and recharging, your body is still working to do that, so it needs fuel/food to do that. He explained it much better than i just did.

Day 5 Post Op Recovery - Monday 21st

I had a bit of a better nights sleep, I was still finding it hard to sleep on my back and parts of my face and my tongue have started to tingle more, which is a good thing but it catches me by surprise! Sometimes i think i have a spider on me or something!

In the morning i decided to take my chin bandage thing off, it was starting to look and smell a bit gross with all my food dribbles down it. It didn't hurt very much, i did it after having a hot shower so i got it quite wet. It did feel really weird when i was taking it off of the numb parts of my face and I had to ask my dad if i was touching skin or bandage but I got there in the end. In hindsight it would of been easier had i of removed it in front of a mirror rather than in front of the tv.

I saw my Ortho on Monday, he was really pleased with how I look. All he did was just pull my lips apart to have  a look at my teeth, that's it. It didn't hurt at all. I asked him if he knew what Mr Harrop had done with my chin, he was going to do something but he hadn't decided exactly what prior to my surgery. So we had a look at my xrays and i got to see all my new metal work! I love looking at xrays, they are so interesting.

It turns out that he had to re position one of my screws on my right hand lower jaw, I don't know why but that explains the extra swelling on that side of my face. You could also see a plate in my chin, but unfortunately Mr O'Neil didn't have my notes so he couldn't tell me exactly what he had done but he will look into it for me. Lastly he also asked me about numbness, so here is my numbness description.

On my Right Side;
Numb - From my under my eye, down to my nose, across the apple of my cheek.
Partially Numb - From my bottom lip, down my chin and under it.
Normal - My top lip. From my ear across to the apple of my cheek and along my jaw bone until my chin.

On my Left Side;
Numb - Bottom lip, chin and under it.
Partially Numb - Under my eye and towards my nose
Normal - Cheeks/face until chin and top lip

Mr O'Neil said that Mr Harrop had informed him that unfortunately on my left hand lower jaw, by my lip/chin there was a nerve that was attached to bone so he had to cut it to free it/move it. So there might be permanent damage there or it might heal. it's just something that I will have to keep and eye on and wait and see. I'm not too fussed about it, it was risk that i was informed about and one that I was willing to take. Nerves heal and it is way to early to tell yet, I get little flickers and tingles so time will tell on that one.

We arranged for him to see me on Friday 25th for my wafer to be removed, yipee! To celebrate Lee made me a chocolate meal replacement shake with nutella and peanut butter blended in it. It was beautiful!

Day 6 Post Op Recovery - Tuesday 22nd

I didn't sleep very well again and i am getting cranky and irritable. I have been powering through my tiredness and not napping during the day in an attempt for me to sleep better at night. No such luck yet though.

I did very little today, sorted some washing with my mum in the morning then we looked at some wall paper samples I'd got before my operation and was looking at colour schemes and ideas for decorating my house. My sister came over to see me which was nice, she said i looked good, much more swollen than when she last saw me in hospital. We decided that I look like the Nutty Proffesor. I had some lunch of potato and leek soup, strained of all the yummy bits though so it's just liquid. Then I slobbed about the house with my dad and watched some old films until Lee came home from work. My mouth seemed to be getting quite dry during the afternoon, like no amount of liquid could make it moist.

I had some tomato and roasted veg soup, again strained, but there was lots of tiny bits of tomato pulp in the soup that got stuck in the gaps in my teeth that i use to suck liquid through. It created quite a vacuum actually and took me ages to clear it by syringing in water then trying to swill it round and dribble/spit it out. I got there in the end, but by then i couldn't be bothered to finish my soup. I went to go to bed all annoyed and disheartened without eating much but Lee made me another chocolate and peanut butter shake and it made it all better!

Pain is still fairly minimal, i had quote bad sinus pain so i took some sudafed before bed, but that was it all day. Antibiotics are almost over thankfully, that stuff tastes horrible!

Here are some Day 6 pics, I'm much more swollen now I've taken my chin bandage off.

Tuesday, 22 October 2013

Double Jaw Surgery Recovery - Days 1-3

Well I've done it!

I've had double jaw surgery and come through the other, swollen, tingly, dribbly, frustrating but wonderful side. Apologies for not updating sooner but those frst 3 days were awful. I seriously underestimated how bad I was going to feel. It was a bit of a shock and I just had no energy to syringe water in my mouth let alone post anything coherent. That has all changed though as I am now on day 6, but I will just do a post about days 1-3 first then move on to where I am now. 

Operation Day - Wednesday 16th

So on the operation morning I got washed and dressed, had a little cry in the shower then pulled myself together. Took some last pictures of my face and some with my man, then my mum and dad came and picked us up. We got to the Hospital about 7.30am and waited for ages, turned out somebody had forgot to tell someone else that I was there. The operating team thought I hadn't turned up!
So because of that my goodbyes were rather rushed and stressed. Then i met with my anaesthetist and some nurses and went through all the pre op stuff like blood pressure getting into your gown and paper pants! I met my Surgeon and he said I was meant to be going to Geddington Ward after my op but they didn't have the right nurses there to give me 24hr care so I was going to be looked after in intensive care instead for the first 24 hours which actually I was quite pleased about.
Then before I knew it I off walking to the theatre room. I was quite scared and nervous when I was in there, and I just kept thinking about happy things and trying not to be scared.
When I came round I was surprised by how thirsty I was, I asked for water straight away, I had a little straw and managed somehow to get a tiny bit up and in my mouth. Then the nurses went and got Lee and it was so lovely to see him. I don't really remember much from being in recovery, then I was being wheeled through the hospital to intensive care.
I had a self administer pain button thing, which was amazing! so that helped me through the first night, I wasn't in pain so much, just discomfort and I think I was scared that if i didn't keep up the pain medication doses then I would feel pain. I really struggled to breathe for the few days and was on oxygen most of the time which helped, but it was still difficult. My IV wasn't placed very well so every time i had fluids, or medication it felt like lava going up my arm which wasn't very nice, but needs must!
My family came to see me that night, my mum cried, my sister almost fainted and threw up (she doesn't do hospitals and ill people) they all said they couldn't believe how different I looked and were really pleased for me. Here is me after my operation! 

Day One Post Op - Thursday 17th

I spent most of the day in ICU, was on oxygen and struggling to breathe freely by myself because my nose was so bunged up and swollen, I was still only given straws to drink with and i really couldn't get anything up them, it was difficult and frustrating that nobody I pointed this out too could offer me a solution. I had a little wash and was able to use the toilet. I was still using my pain button, but the pain I had from my IV was getting worse.

In the afternoon I was transferred to Geddington ward but first i had to go for an xray. There wasn't very much room in there and extras attached to me. the xray lady was miserable and after the first one didn't take very well she came round and grabbed under my chin and lifted my head up and said you need to be higher. I thought i was going to be sick, that hurt a lot and i felt so weak and giddy standing there. I wanted to cry and thought what have i done, why have i had this operation done. 

Eventually I got to the ward and after quite a wait I was settled into bed. My mum came and i just cried and told her what had happened and how rubbish I felt. But on the plus side this ward magically had syringes yaaaaaay! So that meant i could give myself water and food!

I asked for something to eat, it was a really thick meal replacement shake that i just couldnt get down, there was no where big enough for it to go. I slept little, really on an off all night, and was still on oxygen. Half way through the night when the nurses came round to give me more medication I asked for my IV to be removed because the pain from it was worse than the pain I was experiencing from the operation. So I was moved on to liquid medication from that night. The liquid paracetamol was disgusting!

Day Two Post Op - Friday 18th

Friday came and I was told I could go home providing i could breathe, I was so happy! So I whipped off the oxygen and told my stupid nose and body to breathe! To be honest i didn't feel that the level of care I received was very good in either unit. I just felt like neither of them was set up for my type of recovery, for example when I asked for something to eat Friday lunch I was given a small paper cup of milk and a sachet of powder and a desert spoon. Needless to say that didn't mix in very well and I didn't really eat anything or drink very much for 3 days.

But I managed a shower and a hair wash all by myself, got myself dressed and sat and waited for my mum. I got given loads of liquid paracetamol, antibiotics and meal replacement drinks in a variety of flavours called Fortisip, and some chocolate flavour powder stuff called Scandishake. Both are fine, not what you would choose to eat but the flavours are varied and they give me some much needed calories and all teh good stuff you need to get better!

The drive home was fine, I didn't feel sick and it didn't hurt going over bumps. I was so happy to be home! I got into bed with my mountain of pillows and had my paracetamol and antibiotics and some water and thought i would sleep well because I was so tired but I didn't, I slept on and off through the night, I just couldn't get comfy. I sleep on my front, so sleeping in a fairly upright position on my back isn't comfy for me. Here is some day 2 pictures. 

Day Three Post Op - Saturday 19th

Saturday was a really rough day, even though i was at home I just felt so sad, so tired, so fed up. I'd hardly eaten anything for days and felt really weak but I didn't want to eat anything. The liquid paracetamol was making me feel sick, it was so sickly sweet and syrupy, it coated my mouth and made it hard to get anything down after it. My stomach was really bubbly too from just putting antibiotics and paracetamol in it for days rather than food, it made it difficult to sleep and i constantly felt like i needed to use the bathroom when i didn't  I cried a lot and felt like a burden for my family and Lee and just generally felt sorry for myself. I stopped taking the paracetamol and switched to a liquid ibuprofen instead. However I wasn't in any really pain at all, just a mild ache really.

Thursday, 17 October 2013


I've survived! Will post more tomorrow Inc pictures xx xx Thank you for all the well wishes xxxx

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

It's tomorrow!

Oh my! It is jaw surgery day tomorrow!

Firstly apologies for not updating at all over the last week. I have been so busy at work and my evenings have been spent working, stuffing my face with food, recovering from a lousy cold (I know!!!!!) and crying hysterically. This might be a long post so get a cuppa and go to the toilet, also bring a snack back with you!

So lets go back to Thursday my pre op appointment. Had one at the treatment centre where I will be having my operation. Felt so weird sitting in the reception/waiting are, dawned on my that my operation was nearly here and I will be up there in the theatre soon. Rather scary. So filled out all the forms and had a chat with my nurse, lovely woman so funny same one as when  had my wisdoms out. She took my bloods and it all went downhill form there.

My veins are useless, they are wimps like me and hide when a needle comes near. She struggled to get a vein on my right arm, so I had to sit up and she got one on my left, started to draw the blood and then off I go and feint. She got 1 and  half tubes, out of the 4 I needed, so after some water, cold air and a massive chocolate cookie we had another go on my right arm and got the rest of the blood. Then went up to Max fax for my second appointment and waited ages to see a doctor for me to basically sign a consent form to say I agree to have the surgery done and understand the risks etc. My arm now looks like this

Not much hope for me getting away lightly on the bruising front post surgery I think!

So on to the weekend, Friday I went to the cinema and an American diner and stuffed my face with a Fat Boy burger - 8oz cheese burger topped with pulled pork, fries and coleslaw. Then devoured a large bag of chocolate at the cinema. Watched "Filth" film based on a book by Irvine Welsh, very good but very odd. Then got to the car and cried because it was the last time i was going to the cinema with my face and more out of relief i think because when we got there the lights were still up when we walked in the screen and i thought (irrationally) "oh no, everyone will see my horrible face and big chin and whisper about me and think what is he doing with her, she's ugly" Nobody said anything, and nobody probably thought that but I think i was crying because I knew soon I wouldn't have those thoughts.

Anyway here is yummy food pics

Saturday I went for lunch with my friend and ate a brunch muffin - bacon, sausage, fried egg, brie and cranberry sauce on a toasted English muffin. then went and did some window shopping. Came home and had a massive Chinese takeaway with my man, drank wine and binge watched Modern family to help make me laugh.

Sunday I tidied and had my bracey ladies round. So bloody lovely to see them all, they bought me all this

How lovely of them all, we swapped stories (2 have had surgery now) and had a good old natter and a laugh, brilliant time and we ate cake too! Then went to my Mum and Dads for Sunday dinner, ate a mountain of food, and a million Yorkshire puddings and too much apple crumble and felt sick on the way home.

Monday I had my wafer try in, that went well, had a chat with Mr Harrop and saw my teeth molds, they were touching! I saw my teeth how they are going to be, that was brilliant to see. We talked through my xray and my movements, I'm having my top bought forward by 4mm and my bottom back by 5mm and then he hasn't decided exactly what he is dong with my chin, either shave a bit off or cut a bit out and shave a bit off. So that will be a nice surprise! I also mentioned my cold to him, he said it depends on what type of cold i have had and how long i've had it for and if i can breathe through my nose freely or not. Then for my lunch i had a massive brunch burger from a food truck by work. that is a quarter pounder with double cheese, sausage, bacon, egg and onion. Was amazing!

That brings us to today, I have been like a mad lady at work trying to finish everything off, finally left at 6.30 only because my man was stood coaxing me out the door with the prospect of his lovely home made lasagne.  So far tonight I have packed my bag (almost) for 3 nights, eaten my amazing lasagne, had another hot toddy (they have kept me going all week) and a glass of wine, taken off my nails polish boooooo, phoned my grandma and had a chat and a cry.

I'm now off to enjoy the rest of my evening with my man, i'm scared, nervous and excited and all this doesn't seem real at all. It really is hard to believe that tomorrow I'm having double jaw surgery. It's just so surreal that this day is finally here.

Well providing my stupid cold doesn't ruin everything!

Much love to you all and I will try my very bets to update tomorrow.

Wednesday, 9 October 2013

7 days till double jaw surgery!

Wow, 7 days!!! How exciting and scary and exciting again.

I think the only time I'm ever going to go through a set of emotions like this again is if i ever have a baby. I can see me getting to about 8 months and freaking out about the giving birth part. Just deciding I'd like to shut my eyes and open them and then there is  lovely clean baby, no pain, no stress, no worry, no pressure just a new person.

I want that to happen with my operation really. shut eyes, open, wow! OMG! look I have a new face! If only it was that easy :-) As someone wise once said (I would look it up but I'm too tired) " Nothing worth having comes easily." something like that anyway, and having some jaws that work together properly is certainly worth having.

So what have I been up to, preparing for jaw surgery. I have been eating. eating a lot! I have decided that I have a free piglet pass and have been stuffing my face for the last week. I was looking at some cakes in the bakers on my lunch one day last week and i thought,

"mmmmm, they look yummy. That muffin looks good, oooo a chocolate eclair..........what's that, oh that looks nice, an apple turnover...................I should just get a sandwich....................................well, actually i wont be able to eat all this soon will I.................."

So i got my sandwich, some crisps, and then i got a triple chocolate muffin, 2 chocolate eclairs, an apple turnover, an egg custard and a sausage roll and bloody well enjoyed eating them all. Granted I did go over board on the cakes and gave some to my man and ate them for pudding that night, but I haven't been able to stop.

I have been on food overdrive, just thinking mmmm I fancy eating that and then eating it, its been great! My man made fried chicken and sweet potatoes the other day, that was incredible. I've had spaghetti and meatballs, pizza, and i had 4 crumpets for my lunch today and I've eaten loads of chocolate, crisps, cakes, generally rubbish food that tastes lovely that i know in a short space of time when I'm sipping away on my 14th complan shake I will be thinking you stupid girl you should of ate that.

I went out for a big steak meal last Friday with friends and family, was brilliant, had great night, went out for cocktails and drinks after an danced the night away! nice little send off for my face.  Some pictures of my food and my friends and my man below. I know its a cheesy kissy picture, but it does show off my soon to be different chin/jaw and I think it will be nice to do another picture like that once i'm all healed up. A good before and after.

Last steak for a while!!!!

Me and my brilliant friends

My Man

Got my pre ops tomorrow, and I've got a cold. Hope that's not going to be a problem. Might be something to do with all the rubbish food I've eaten, alcohol I've been drinking and my many late nights recently?

I will update on the pre ops tomorrow. I'm off to enjoy a tea with honey and find something yummy to put in my piglet belly :-)

Friday, 27 September 2013

19 Days to Go!!!!!

Yep, 19 days to go and the only preparation I have done is cry and cry a bit more.

I feel like I'm going crazy, the waiting is most definitely the worse part about all this, give me tooth and jaw ache any day over this horrible anxious, nervous, scared, excited, sick feeling I have. I think they should just tell you the day before and that's it, maybe send out a secret letter to your family, friends and employer but not to you until the night before then you don't have to sit and worry and be scared for weeks on end.

So I had all my measurements and moulds taken last week, also had some junior doctors in on the appointment which was fun. I had a chat with my Ortho and my Surgeon and we are still planning the double jaw surgery, top forward and bottom back, with genioplasty thrown in too, the chin will be reduced and moved back. I'm not sure of the exact measurements but I just asked him to take enough off so I can eat and speak properly and so that I don't get picked on any more.

I am my surgeons only morning patient, so I hope he is a morning person, because I'm not! I think I will be in hospital for about 2-3 nights after surgery then allowed home. I will have my mum and dad looking after me for the first week during the day, and my man at night. I am a very independent person and will probably find it difficult to let go and allow someone to help me and do things for me, or maybe I will be that zonked out and feel so rubbish that I will be glad of the help! Ma and Pa will be around for another week after that but have said that they will leave it up to me as to how much help I want/need.

I will be having morphine on a push button, self administer thing while in hospital to help me through, I will also be pumped full of antibiotics to help stop infection. Now my body doesn't particularly like antibiotics, a certain part in particular always gets rather funny when antibiotics are introduced, (ladies you know what I mean!) so I mentioned this to my Surgeon and he has said he will also put some particular type of medicine in me to stop that little problem from happening! That is the last thing I want whilst I'm recovering.

In terms of bought things to prepare for recovery, I have next to nothing. I have got some lip balm, some gel ice pack things, new PJ bottoms and some squirty sauce bottles, one for water one for juice. and that's it. To be honest I'm not really sure what else to get, maybe a net flicks subscription?

As far as food goes, I'll buy some meal replacement shakes this weekend and then I'll leave it up to Ma and Pa to be creative with the liquids for the first week, I was told to only eat clear liquids for the first week. Then from there just whatever I can put in, maybe some more soups, juice, sweet potatoe mash, eggs, jelly, ice cream. I'll just see what I can get down. I'm not too concerned about food. I wont starve anyway.

So next appointment is for my pre op stuff, then my wafer try in on the 14th, only 2 days before my operation!

Some updated pics of my face, I am very sad to see it go, I have eventually grown to love my face, many don't but I did in the end. I know it's for the best, I will be a lot happier and in less pain.

Back teeth touching
Relaxed jaw

Smiling front

Angled view
Close up of the teeth!