my brace story goes a little like this. Prior to having braces, my baby teeth hated me. You think I jest. My teeth, much like myself, were stubborn as hell, and instead of falling out like they're supposed to when adult teeth come through, the buggers would instead sit tight and allow the adult teeth to grow out of place. This resulted in some very weird teeth, adult and baby. I ended up having three teeth taken out before actually getting braces.
At first, I had an appointment for 'blue bands'. These bands are placed in the gaps around one of your molars at the back of your mouth, so that a week later, when you get braces, you have a metal ring placed around that tooth. I have no idea what these were supposed to do, though according to some research, they take chewing forces better than the brackets that you have glued on.
A week after the blue band separators, I was fitted with braces on my top teeth, as well as cements. The cement was basically a centimetre large block of cement type stuff that kept my teeth apart. This was done to cure a tooth that had become an underbite, behind my lower jawline (see bastard baby teeth above).
A couple of months later, I got a full set of braces on, as well as a clear set of bands to pull together a gap in my front teeth.
PSA: If you have any light colour for your bands, do not let your teeth get within 3 feet of a curry
Basically, only a couple of weeks after these new clear bands for my gap were put in, my family went to an Indian with my aunts and uncles and cousin. It wasn't until I was brushing my teeth later did I see that I had in fact stained the clear bands yellow, with another six weeks of wearing them to go. Please learn from my mistakes.
Then I just got a load of different colours at the next few appointments; I did light blue (I decided light colours didn't fit me then), I did purple a few times, I had pink for my holiday in November, and I went a dark, almost maroon, red for my last go round.
This last time, I also had elastics to wear to correct my jaw alignment.I only had to wear these from one tooth to another, thankfully. I took to keeping two pots in my bathroom for these, one for the new, and another for the used. These don't snap as easily as you'd think; I found that mine snapped mainly when I was yawning a lot.
I was given a starter pack by my orthodontist (it had to be paid for, but it was only £11, or something). In this, I got a toothbrush to go over the tops of the brackets, one to run along the edges, a pack of the interdental brushes, and an alcohol-free mouthwash (apparently an alcohol mouthwash would have done something to my braces or something). I also got a pack of wax, which I never really used that much of. It took me a week to read the instructions of the wax, which said the bracket should be dry if you're trying to stick a ball of wax to it - if it's in the back of my mouth, how on earth am I going to get it dry?
I was also told to use straws, as sugary drinks that come in contact with the braces may also dissolve them or something like that, so I've been drinking through straws for a year and a half (I still have a load left, so it may take a while to kick the habit).
As much as I hated having braces, I know it was worth it. If you know me at all, you know I smile a lot, and I laugh a lot, but I hated my smile with braces. It didn't look right to me in the mirror, not with all this metal in the way. However, I knew that under that metal, my smile would be so much better than it used to be. That was my motivation for the last year and a half, that my smile would be all the better at the end of it, and I think it is. It might take a while, and a lot of singing in the mirror, to get used to how my mouth looks when I talk, but I think I'll be alright.
So, have some timeline photos now. Pictures of my teeth with braces were actually hard to find, this one of me and Maya messing on is from December. whilst we were at an afterschool thing.
From left to right, a picture of me from New Year's Eve 2013, three weeks before braces. Then, December with Maya the madman. Today, whilst we were on our way to the orthodontist. Tonight, brace free with red lipstick, because I had to see how it looked with my new smile (w7 matte lipstick in Red Dawn if anybody's interested).
And as well, sorry to Maya, but that's the best photo of me smiling with braces I could find that doesn't make me look half mad (nearly all my selfies on my phone are closed-lipped, not anymore :D)
So that is my braces story! I'm now going to eat a celebratory curry, as I now have nothing to horribly stain in my mouth :)
See you tomorrow for a Writing Wednesday, Eve x