A (hopefully) daily record of an adult with orthodontic braces. Using self ligating Smartclip braces. Approximate time of completion is 8 months to 1 year.
Apologies for the late response! My PhD is starting to take its toll!
Hello potential bracketeer! I’ve loved the ceramics very much and if it takes only 4 months, then that sounds like a fabulous deal! They were actually not and people had to go up close to notice that I had braces on to begin with! It starts to stain a few months after that but if you are rather stringent with your dental hygiene, it shouldn’t show in 4 months.
I can safely say that it just looks like you’re wearing a retainer. But 4 months sounds fantastic so I say go for it :)
It’s been a while since I’ve been able to stop by that website but will gladly always say hello my fellow bracketeers :) I have to be really honest but it was definitely one of my vices whilst wearing clear damons and I think I developed quite an OCD complex about it! To be honest, I was told to stave off the staining drinks (i.e. coffee, coke, etc.) but that was too difficult a feat whilst doing some hardcore postgrad work!
I think the best really is to be thorough about your teethcare. After your teeth adjusts (i.e. after your gums start swelling so give it about 2 months), I brushed my teeth 3 times a day, flossed and I gargled. I didn’t gargle until much later (due to silly advice from my ortho at the time), but I actually found that it helped and made a slight difference.
However, it will always still be a difficult because your teeth cannot get the best clean since you can’t reach all the nooks and crannies! After, you can either choose to whiten your teeth or lay off the staining drinks. I’ve just been back on plain ol’ whitening toothpaste (I’m using the red Colgate Optic White) and on month 3, my teeth are getting back to their white-ish self :).
I hope that helps! And don’t worry - the braces are fab and no one is likely to notice these yellow stain-age other than you :)! Best of luck!
It’s been so long since I’ve been on this blog and it’s been absolutely mental with me prepping to move to Aussieland (this coming Wednesday and I’m nowhere near finished packing AHHH). But I’ve really missed this blog and I’ve missed the bracketeers! (Can I actually admit to saying that I miss my braces? Sometimes wearing retainers can be so high maintenance!)
I wanted to make a proper post with pictures but I kept putting things off. Until I received a question today, I realised that I’m going to do a quick bullet points of tips before I forget them (sans pictures) and drop a quick hi because I miss you guys so much!
Things they don’t tell you about clear retainers:
So what are the tips to counter this:
And that’s it so far! I’m getting used to life with retainers and it’s not that annoying. I still haven’t had the guts to try chewing gum (I’ve read that your teeth moves when you chew gum) but I’ve munched through so much gummies you have no idea.
Best of luck to my bracketeers and those whom have journeyed on to retainer-dom. I’m still about, taking questions, and will be bringing quick tips on both braces and retainers on this blog!
I know that there are no more daily pictures (which I do wonder if anyone looks at them) but I now have curly hair. Weird huh. I miss you guys.
Hey there! I have to say, first week was definitely not a walk in the park because it was mighty painful and solids was definitely not happening. I usually numbed my way through a lot of mashed potatoes, porridge, and a lot of soupy things. I was able to eat some soft fish, but I think any other meats like chicken of sorts, I really struggled through. By the second week, I was able to eat a bit more meats if they were cooked pretty throughly but I think I still swallowed quite a bit of food without chewing!
But I loved my ceramic braces because you could barely see them when they were on and they were low maintenance. Eat lots of gummy sweets from now until you wear them because you’re not going to see them for a while!
I hope that helps! Best of luck with your new braces- you’ll definitely be fine :)
I had been a bit worried the past few days because I did notice my teeth moving rather quickly. I gave a quick ring to my orthodontist today and they said that my retainer was read. I was thinking that, though short-lived were the days of free teeth, I’d rather have my beautiful straight teeth after the torture of 6-months than it just to move back into place.
I was quite surprised that I received these retainers:
They are plastic ones instead of the usual metal wire ones with plastic roofs (knowns as the Harley retainers).
It turns out that plastic retainers, which I got, are very much similar to Invisaligns (and even created by the same lab and company). They are very handy for (and mostly specific to) overcrowding teeth and of course to retain them in place after your braces. However, unlikely invisaligns, they are just to keep things stable. Mine was a bit of a tight fit since my orthodontist did notice my two front teeth deciding to be a real bithc and move about. Apparently this can be a common result for those that have to do twists in their teeth to straighten out hence it is really important to keep your retainers on.
So the news is that I’ll have to wear my retainers on for at least a year. My orthodontist recommended that:
But I’ve worked pretty hard on my teeth so I’m going to probably keep it on daily for a good 3 months as recommended by those online. My orthodontist has recommended that you wear the retainers for at least one year because that’s how long it would take for it to retain in shape, at least for a permanent structure.
Here are some pictures of how they look with them on:
From a distance, they don’t really look like I’ve got anything on. Up close, they look like I’ve got some weird shiny-type teeth. It was rather painful to wear today since my teeth moved and it has given me some sort of lisp. I am tripping over my words a lot!
They were a pleasant surprise to have because I had braces myself to wear a wire one (which I know would barely even show), but I quite like how customised these retainers are. But I am a bit worried with how fragile they seem! To keep them long lasting, the tips for them:
And that’s about it! Yes, I do find having straight teeth does make me feel a lot better and sometimes I keep smiling and hiding my teeth - but it turns out that I don’t have to do that anymore.
I’m glad that it’s now becoming more and more coming that older people are getting braces and I would recommend getting them when you’re older. And if my teeth do move again, I will think about getting them again. But hopefully they won’t move so soon.
Peace out guys, you’ve been amazing.
The deed is done!
I can’t believe it!
No seriously, I still have this awful feeling like I’ve taken it off too soon and I’m going to wake up tomorrow with my teeth everywhere.
I swear to God I just saw it move and now there’s some gaps and I’m desperate for some retainers asap.
I think I had a bit of a one of a kind experience when it came to removing braces. I know it’s not meant to hurt, but mine did. And this is why:
Pretty much what happened was that I had my lips pulled open as they yanked out my brackets. The actual process doesn’t hurt but the process of keeping my lips and jaw open was really saw. My orthodontist was actually a bit worried because I started bleeding and started looking for cuts and it turns out that it was just because mine was surprisingly sensitive and was a bit swollen. It was a bit of an embarrassing procedures because I started tearing up a little bit.
After she literally took a pair of dental pliers and pulled my brackets off, she spent ages actually cleaning the glue off my teeth. She was terribly thorough (and also pointed out the staining in my teeth…because…well…you know I did drink a ridiculous amount of coffee…).
(Let me clarify, I am actually exaggerating. They are not actually yanking the brackets off your teeth but it is a matter of physics; they squeeze the bracket off and it’s done in a way that it should cleanly pop off your teeth without damaging your tooth yet leaving some excess glue. That’s why the ortho usually has to polish your teeth off after. The sound is a bit terrifying though and some excess force is necessary but it really doesn’t hurt unless your gums are weak!)
In addition, she even shaved down my teeth. Like crazy wha?! I have like shaved down actor-type teeth since it was apparently a part of the package! Unfortunately, teeth whitening are not a part of the package so before I’ll be leaving for Australia, I’ll be booking in a scaling and polishing appointment. I actually have Misha Collins-type teeth (set with the overbite too!)
She even offered to shaved down my fang but I kind of like my fangs. I keep them just in case I can opt to be a vampire. Don’t want to be a lame vampire if it ever happens.
After that, she did some impressions of my teeth; she took two just in case I lost my retainers in Australia so that there would be a spare in Malaysia and I’d just give her a buzz if anything happened. I’m awaiting her phonecall on when those will be ready since they have to send it to the labs to get it made.
In any case, the whole procedure took a good hour and a half (actually longer than them putting on the braces). She was a real perfectionist, despite our issues before, and I’m really pleased with the results.
I lost a good chunk of my files just now whilst I was trying to recover it from my backups so here are the best photos I could find:
The panorama pictures of my separators.
I have a really bad habit of smiling with my tongue.
Comparing before and after:
I used to have some epic staining then and she even scrubbed it off during today’s appointment!
I still am extremely nervous about my teeth moving about so I’m being a bit careful. I’m still chewing using my back teeth since I’m so used to having braces and having a bit of a phantom braces issue. I’m so worried that my teeth will move back out of place but I guess that’s what the retainers are for!
The gap before (near my fang) has started to open up which makes me a bit nervous! I noticed that I still have a bit of an overbite because that still wasn’t resolved since I chose to remove it early out of fear of overcorrection.
I can’t stop licking my teeth ahh.
As for the updates for this website, I’ll be posting my last few entries on how the retainers feel like and any interesting updates that I’ll have with my teeth. I’ll keep it going if anyone has any questions and I’ll freely answer them or start posting up braces tips. In the mean time, the posts will sort of slow down after now and I’ll continue posting about my personal life here at my junky tumblr or focusing on my psychology blog for my PhD updates.
It’s been a short but more memorable journey and I have never been around such supportive people as fellow bracketeers. I’ll be putting my last reflections of having braces on my next update when I get my retainers.
Love you guys.
I ran out of regular PJs and had to settle for my cowprint onesie. Don’t knock it; it’s extremely comfy during winter times.
What do you do on your final day of wearing braces?
Eat mochi of course!
Okay I really shouldn’t have done that but I think I had this idea that if it breaks, it doesn’t matter anyway since I’ll be having it off. I really ought to be patient and celebrate tomorrow but I know I’ll be waiting with a pack of gummies (I am so excited about the gummies you have no idea) right after this appointment.
I’m really a bit nervous at how this will work out. With my experiences with my ortho, I’m not confident that this will actually be happening tomorrow (my mother insists that it will since she’s so keep to get the big bucks) and at the same time, whether it’s a good idea that I’ve completed my braces cycle in such a short period of time. I know that the time is usually meant for my teeth to get rooted but my ortho did mention that, ‘There’s a fear that your teeth may be overcorrected’. Is that even possible??
In any case, I am exceptionally excited but will be really careful and will probably spend the next few days eating soft foods until my retainers are made since I don’t want any teeths-a-shifting.
In any case, I really don’t know what to say…tomorrow will be a long entry of reflection (starting to sound like a Psychology assignment) and how it feels to run my tongue over my teeth (I hope!)
Sorry for the creepy polar bear in the back.If you’re from the UK, that’s the Birds Eye polar bear. I ate like 20 boxes of fish fingers to get that polar bear. By myself. Yes I’m disgusting. But it was a time when I left Uni and working three jobs to pay for bills. And I thought, hell yea, I want a white polar bear. I don’t know if I can eat fish fingers again though.
I think the best way to describe the current situation of my teeth are that they’re feeling rather ‘ginger’. They’re not painful anymore, as I don’t really need to take painkillers, but I’d rather swallow anything down before using them to chew. Surprisingly enough, the pain is not coming from the new powerchain to remove the once existing gap, but instead the metal powerchain on my four front teeth. It’s a real best and really straightening out my teeth like a mother (even it really can’t physically get any straighter with the lack of space in my teeth).
I also have this terrible habit of clenching my teeth together and that also makes it a bit sore. I’m starting to notice that I’m not actually knocking my teeth against the bottom brackets, but more like I’m bumping my top and bottom jaw together. It could suggest that my jaws have aligned but I don’t remember how it was like to have an aligned jaw anymore. Is it normal to feel this way? How would it feel like to not have stuff on my teeth?
In any case, after my exam, I spent my time counting my teeth. I think I only have 28. Though I may have missed 2…which would still make it 30 meaning that I’m missing some teeth. What is that about?
Tomorrow’s my last full day with braces. I’m going for a Japanese food buffet. Probably not the best idea I’ve had.
Sorry for the pre-pubescent Justin Bieber hair. I’m in dire need of a haircut and will only be able to get it in 2 weeks time.
I can only make a quick update as I have to be up early tomorrow morning for my English exam (ugh). In any case, some quick news:
Righteous - I’ve gotta run. Early wake-up call tomorrow and all that jazz. I can’t believe that my braces journey is done so soon…I don’t know if that’s a good thing or a bad thing. A better update tomorrow!
The elastics on my brackets make my teeth look extra chunky. And it looks weird since I’m licking the back of my teeth.
I am amazingly freaked out that it is less that 7 months that I may have my braces off and many people have commented, ‘Your teeth are done really fast - is that alright?’
So yes, I have started to worry - maybe it is a bit soon.
I’ve done a bit of research and it’s true, 6 months seems extremely ideal. Many people have stated, ‘The orthodontist has said that it could be done within 6 months but we ended up going over’. There has been a few cases where SmartClip braces have ended up repairing the teeth with 6 months of treatment, but it seems that I’ve actually hit the optimum date that orthodontists wish to advertise about.
I saw something called the ‘6-month smile’ which is braces that superficially fixes your teeth to just straighten it yet not fix the bite. Usually fixing the bite takes longer and it just fixes the teeth alignment.
I guess I could relate; my teeth were not that crooked and I did not have that much problem with my bite. The ortho did state that I should be fixing my teeth now in preparation for a bad ‘bite’; however, I didn’t have that much to fix. I now do have an overbite which may not be repaired since I’ve chosen to taken it off early but it seems to be adjusting itself. My teeth are still a bit sore these days which means that it’s still being a bit stubborn but hopefully by my next appointment, I won’t feel the pain just in time for the retainers.
As for my upcoming appointments for removal, there are no phonecalls about it yet. I’ll be chasing up the orthodontist tomorrow as I need to finalise some dates since I’ll be going away for my ‘day of ageing’ (i.e. birthday).
But whatever it is, I barely recognise my teeth now and I’m so damn proud of them! They’re extremely straight!
I do worry that they might shift soon after since I’ve only had my braces for a short period of time, but I’ve researched and saw that the best way to let your teeth calcify is to wear one’s retainers daily for 3 months and then nightly for up to a year. Even though the ortho might recommend less, I think I may not want to take risks since I’ve only had it for such a short period of time (though she may recommend more, then I’d be a bit sad).
Fingers crossed that I get to hear a date soon.