My name is Laura and I'm writing this blog like many others have because I'd like to write down my story as I go through braces, jaw surgery, and whatever else is on the other side of it all. I've never written a blog before but because so many others' blogs are helpful to me, I thought this may blog may be helpful to other people as well. As you can probably deduce from the title, I am currently a dental student and I'm a little more than half way through dental school.
|Here I am "brushing" my teeth with the candy toothbrush off our cake at a school party. Yes, we have dental themed cakes. be jealous. lol|
I have a class III malocclusion with about 8 mm of negative overjet. Also, I am in a posterior crossbite on all of my back teeth. (Basically, I'm in a crossbite everywhere). I had palate expanders and braces a couple times as a kid and when I got them taken off at 13 1/2 years old I was technically in a Class I occlusion (where your top teeth fit over your bottom). When you're 13 you are still growing and since your jaw bones grow at the same rate as your long bones, and since I was still growing taller, my jaw was still growing as well. Over the next couple years I gradually went back to having a underbite. Since the problem is a skeletal discrepancy, orthodontic therapy alone was unlikely to succeed. The reason I had my braces off early was to take care of a traumatized central incisor that needed root canal therapy. Since that was the reason I had them off I never considered jaw surgery that my orthodontist and dentist talked about since I thought that I couldn't have braces again. (Also the thought of major surgery was way to scary!).
When I started dental school I realized I was wrong about not being able to have braces (you can have them even on non-vital teeth) and I started considering my options. I have never been happy about my profile and since it is my job as a dental student to fix peoples teeth everyday, I constantly think about my own teeth. It's like owning a car dealership and driving a broken down ford. Sure, not all dentists have perfect teeth but I'd like to have pretty white teeth and a "normal" bite.
To make a very long story short, I have decided to correct my bite. I currently have braces and am almost ready for surgery. I had my lower 3rd molars removed (I used to use them to bite) because that is the area where my oral surgeon will split my jaw to move it back. I had my upper third molars out in high school. I tentatively have a surgery date on April 12, 2012 and I cant wait! My orthodontist is trying to expand my upper arch as much as possible before surgery so hopefully only a one piece Lefort will be needed instead of a two piece. I do not need a SARPE(surgically assisted rapid palatal expansion). I hope that having a correct bite will prevent me from having any periodontal and worse TMJ problems down the line.
Here are some of my pre-braces pictures (I have nicer ones from the orthodontist, I just need to get them uploaded)
|I've never smiled while biting down. This is my fake-out smile, open the jaw so it doesn't look as protruded.|
|Another side profile opening so the prognathic jaw doesn't look so bad.|
That's all for now I suppose, I need to go get ready for an exam and cleaning for my patient! Oh, the life of a dental student.