First braces adjustment!

Yesterday I had my first braces adjustment. My orthodontist replaced my 2 wires with 2 new ones. The previous wires with size 12 on top and 12 at bottom have been replaced with 16 on top and 14 in the bottom arch. The experience was little bit strange.

assistant REMOVING the wires

The assistant asked me what color I wanted. Previously I chose the Gray (not so noticeable) color. I decided to stick to the gray color. I’m not sure (yet) I can handle other more “flashy” colors. Maybe next time? Afterwards she started removing the wire from top and bottom arch. I didn’t go that fluently. She told me the wires were pretty well bound to my teeth :-). Once the wires were removed I immediately felt the pressure on my teeth going down. That means the wires are really working hard to straighten my teeth! The temporary front tooth is still a little bit awkward because it needs to be manipulated little bit differently.

The orthodontist installing new wires

Afterwards my orthodontist joined and started the installation of the brand new wires. She told me I’m progressing nicely in the top arch and decided to use size 16. So she skipped one size. In the bottom arch I stepped up to size 12. In total the procedure took max 15 minutes. I payed for the intervention and went back to work 🙂

In short, my first braces adjustment went fast and pretty fluently! Maybe next time (end of March) I’ll go for another ligature color?

In braces!!! Finally…

I have big news to share!. I have been in a roller coaster last 3 weeks. On Thursday 18th of January I finally got my adult metal braces installed. A very big step after many appointments and discussions with dentists / endodontologists / implant surgeons / paradontologists. 24 metal brackets have been installed and I’m happy finally doing this! I will explain here what happened that day!

Not stressed anymore

I thought I would be very stressed but that very moment when I arrived at the orthodontist office no more stress could be found. I was 100% prepared to get things going. The day before (On Wednesday) I visited the implant surgeon. He extracted my front tooth. Put the extracted tooth in a very small box/cup and send me home. Not really my favorite experience but this moment was the real moment things started. So I was sitting there in the waiting room waiting for the orthodontist to call my name. She was 15 minutes late, but ok…

Come to the chair

She told me to sit in the chair and didn’t ask too many questions. Her assistant started to explain how to brush my teeth as soon as I get my metal brackets installed. She explained it in detail while the orthodontist installed the necessary hardware needed. I was lying in the chair while she put a plate on my chest with the small box with brackets and some other typical “dentist stuff”. After the explanation of the assistant, the orthodontist selected some brackets from the small box and told the assistant: “We don’t need these brackets”. (I only needed 24 brackets). A few minutes later the orthodontist explained she would insert a cheek retractor in my mouth to make sure all my teeth stayed dray during the installation of the brackets. After installing the cheek retractor my orthodontist and her assistant started the application of the braces.

cheek spreading!

I knew it would take a while. But… having your lips/cheeks spread for one full hour… I can tell you… Not easy! Each and every bracket was glued to each and every tooth. 24 brackets in total. Clean the tooth, dry the tooth, glue the tooth, fix the tooth with a special purple light… And again and again and again. This procedure took about 40 minutes. In the meantime the orthodontist and assistant were chatting and talking about their private life. The only thing I could do was… Waiting waiting and waiting…

What LIGATURE color do you want?

But then I ended up in a surprise. After installation of each and every bracket my ortho started putting the top wire in the brackets. Meanwhile her assistant showed me a set of BLUE elastic ligatures. At this very moment I started to stress because I didn’t expect this to happen? I thought I would get Damon (self-ligating braces not needing elastic ligatures!). But I was not able to talk due to the cheek retractor… The orthodontist added: “Or do you want just gray… Maybe this will look more adult”. I quickly nodded “YES! GIVE ME THE GRAY!!!”. So she started fixing an elastic ligature over each bracket.

You have to know I’m a pretty self-conscious person. I didn’t want my mouth to end up with elastics and all such thing. I thought the looks of Self-Ligating would be less “visible”. My brain started racing and I tried to imagine how I would look like if I would look myself in the mirror.

The riding pontic!

My orthodontist decided to wait with the riding pontic until the very last moment. She took my (extracted) tooth out of the small box and put some glue on the tooth to attach the final bracket. She installed the tooth on the wire closing the gap in my top front row. Before removing the blue cheek retractor the orthodontist asked another assistant to take pictures (with a big camera) of my mouth. I really felt uncomfortable about it. But I think it is needed to compare and follow up the progress of my new braces pulling and pushing my teeth. She took the retractor out of my mouth and showed my “new face” in a mirror… OUCH!!! I have to be honest…pretty shocking to see…

So what’s next?

After the installation of my braces I experienced a pretty acidic taste in my mouth. The assistant explained me this taste would go away pretty quickly. I was invited to the reception to schedule the next 3 check-up appointments. This will happen every +/- 4 to 5 weeks. I have payed the amount of 900€ and I left the building. Sitting in my car I stared in the mirror watching myself with all that hardware sticking to me teeth. I already started hoping to get these brackets removed soon. But I know I will have to finish this and undergo for the next (minimum) 9 months!

In the next few days I’ll bring you some more updates on how things are going. Because there is a lot of information to share with you!

Front tooth extracted!

Check! I have returned from the implant surgeon. He extracted my front tooth. It only took 30 minutes to complete the procedure. He put my tooth in a small box so I can take it to my orthodontist appointment tomorrow.

Things are getting serious now. There is no way back. I already made some new appointments.

  • In June I will have a checkup appointment. That time the surgeon will check the bone healing. And if everything is fine the implant can be inserted.
  • Then I have to wait for the implant to heal. If everything is going fine the crown can be installed after mid-September! That means I can start making an appointment with my dentist to create the final crown!

So, I will update the final treatment-plan page as soon as possible. This way you know what will happen next!

I was pretty afraid for the appointment today. I was worried about:

  • What if the surgeon hit the other teeth? Breaking other teeth by accident?
  • What if the surgeon broke / damaged the extracted front tooth?

But everything went fine! I look pretty silly now because of that one big gap in my front top row. Really strange feeling and sight! I think I will be happy with the braces being installed tomorrow… Or not?

Happy 2023!

Happy 2023! New year, new experiences! Finally things are coming closer and soon I’ll join the adult braces club!

To be honest I’m very nervous about what will come. As you know next week Wednesday my front tooth 21 will be extracted and Thursday my braces (both top and bottom) will be installed.

I have to tell you there might be a very small change of plan! Because I have visited the second opinion implant surgeon. He told me it is better to extract the tooth and wait for 3 months to install the final implant. This will give the bone some time to heal and to make it easier to install the implant in final position.

This makes things little bit more complex because I have 2 appointments scheduled now!!! One at the implant surgeon to extract the tooth + install the immediate implante. And the other appointment with the implant surgeon that will only extract the tooth (delayed implant).

As you can guess I want to talk about it with my dentist. (I hope she won’t be mad at me because I didn’t tell her I had scheduled a second opinion appointment) Should I go for implant surgeon 1 or 2? But after one week my dentist still didn’t receive the treatment plan from surgeon 2. I have the feeling I have been through this before 😉

Probably next week I’ll update my blog and if everything goes fine my treatment will have started with an open gap in my top arch and hopefully a set of metal braces.

Happy 2023! again and… Wish me luck!

My final treatment plan

On Wednesday 16th of November I finally received my final treatment plan. My orthodontist and implant surgeon finally made up their mind and came up with the final treatment plan. The implant surgeon sent me an email and a few minutes later my orthodontist called me to explain what will happen.

The main reason why they started discussing my treatment again is because I have sent them an email asking how the bottom braces will interact with the implant. My orthodontist convinced me to start wearing braces both top & bottom to get the best result.

January things will finally start

So they have decided to move on with the treatment as follows:

January 18th:

  • Extraction of front tooth 21 at implant surgeon office.
  • Installation of the implant (without temporary tooth) and install some bio material to fill some missing bone.
  • Installation of a healing abutment.
  • I will have to take the extracted tooth with me. The rest of the day I will have a gap at location 21.

January 19th:

  • Appointment at orthodontist.
  • My extracted tooth will be used as pontic. This means, the tooth will be attached to a bracket on my top-row archwire. This way the gap will be hidden.
  • Installation of brackets and wire on top row (with the pontic). I will need the top braces for minimum 6 months.
  • Installation of brackets and wire on bottom row. I will need the bottom braces for minimum 9 months.

After this procedure I will have to:

  • Get used to the braces 🙁 (Oh my!)
  • Wait for the implant abutment to heal (takes about 6 months)
  • Optional: This step depends on the healing process. Checkup the tissues around the implant and gum correction (takes about 2 months)
  • Checkup healing of implant. Then wait another 2 weeks minimum / 3 months maximum
  • Installation of definitive porcelain crown.

Everything will be fine!

Summarised this means I will end up in full metal braces. So I will get braces installed on top and bottom teeth. My worst nightmare will come through. I have decided not to think too much anymore and to move on with the treatment.

Yesterday, I visited my general dentist (30 minutes appointment) to get my yearly checkup and as expected she was happy to see my gum and teeth are in good shape. She wished me good luck with the implant and braces and reassured me everything will be fine! Wish me luck!

Bottom braces in January

It looks like January 2023 will be the real start of my treatment. I have visited my Ortho last week. We decided to start with the treatment of my bottom teeth. For now it will be a single-arch treatment because I have to wait for some feedback from my implant surgeon. The ortho appointment only took 30 minutes. We discussed the options and signed the contract!

The decision to move forward makes me nervous because it is pretty definitive. But I’m also happy because this was taking way too long. Tomorrow I’ll call my implant surgeon to discuss the treatment / extraction of my front tooth (and when to schedule it). My ortho told me the top teeth don’t necessarily need braces, but to make things perfect she suggests to go for it. I will check with the surgeon at what faze the top braces can be installed. My ortho didn’t want to start with the top arch because of the bad front tooth.

I have selected the basic damon metal braces. Because they won’t stain after drinking coffee (yes, I drink lots’o coffee!) and eating some spicy food! Metal braces are less expensive than ceramic braces, this is also a reason to not go for ceramic.

I btw, the braces treatment of my bottom arch will take +/- 9 months. That is acceptable… Isn’t it?

More I can’t say. A lot will depend on what my implant surgeon will say. As you know I also have schedule a second opinion implant surgeon appointment in January next year! More info to come soon!

This week will be the week?

It’s been a while!

It has been little bit silent again. Most of the time I have been waiting and waiting and waiting. I don’t have all answers yet. Don’t know if I have to start the braces treatment. Or do I have to start with the implant immediately? This week might be the week to get the final treatment plan!

First the implant surgeon didn’t send my medical record to my dentist. So I had to ask her over and over again to share it with my dentist (and orthodontist). We have been waiting for this report since my in-take appointment in July. Delays, delays, delays 🙁

I have been sending emails and made some phone-calls… Now finally end of September we received the report. The report states that:

  • My front tooth needs to be extracted to get rid of the root infection.
  • Orthodontic extrusion is not needed. We can skip that.
  • Orthodontic treatment is still possible but can be done independent from the implant placement.

Now what does the orthodontist say?

So I tried to contact the orthodontist… Again: It took weeks to get a response. Looks like there was a misunderstanding. After receiving the Implant report my orthodontist thought that a braces treatment was not necessary anymore. This is strange because she suggested to get braces installed to make room for the implant? Remember?

I managed to have a call with the orthodontist last week. I asked her what to do: Do I need to start a braces treatment or not? Is there any reason to skip the braces and move on with the implant? She told me she will contact the implant surgeon and see what to do. On Thursday 27th of October (This week!) I have an appointment with the orthodontist to see how we can move on. Let’s see what this week will bring!

I’m feeling little bit frustrated

I started this journey in July 2021. Hoping to find a solution to fix my front tooth. In the meantime I know it cannot be saved. To come to this conclusion I had to pay +/- 1000€ (in total). Now I was hoping to get my final treatment plan. But for some reason things are slowing down. At this very moment I still don’t know when my braces will be installed nor do I know when the implant can be installed. As I’m getting older AND I’m not THAT keen on starting a braces treatment at adult age… I’m getting a little bit frustrated.

Last week I called to the implantologist again asking about the medical file that should have been sent to my dentist end of July. The receptionist told me the file was NOT YET (?) sent to my dentist and/or orthodontist. I can’t believe she didn’t do this even after sending her 2 emails. And things even got worse… she will be on honeymoon for the next 2 weeks. (1 week passed already).

I also sent and email to my dentist, asking her (again) if she received my medical record from the implantologist. But also there… no reaction!

I felt very frustrated so I called another implant surgeon. I did some research on the internet. The surgeon is working in a hospital close to the orthodontist practice. But again… another “problem” popped up. I asked for an appointment… They have scheduled me on January 4th !!!!!! 🙁 They can’t be serious? That means I’m almost trying 2 years to fix that tooth!!! I really don’t want to think about this and hope that my dentist or the surgeon will contact me ASAP.

I feel ready now. The sooner I get news from the orthodontist and implantologist, the better! I’ll just jump into the treatment with or without adult braces but hopefully with a new front tooth implant!

More than one month later…

First I want to say I’m sorry about not writing new stories. I was on holiday and was not able to “work” on this topic. Also my dentist and ortho both were on holiday. My story was some kind of “frozen”.

Today a new month started. I’m home again and normal life is settling down. That means I have to start thinking again about the braces / implant treatment progress I’m making IF I ever want my front tooth to be fixed.

Until yesteday (since July) I didn’t hear anything from my dentist / orthodontist / implantologist. I did send an email to my implantologist last week but never got an answer. So I called my orthodontist. She told me she is waiting for the visit-report from my visit in July at the implant surgeon. My ortho told me to call the surgeon and ask them to send the report. So that is what I did today. I called the surgeon office and they have told me they never sent the report to my dentist or ortho because they… FORGOT! How is that possible? Today the surgeon herself was not in the office so tomorrow they will send the report to both my ortho and dentist.

I hope the orthodontist will take some action after receiving the report from the implant surgeon. Or maybe my dentist will contact me? It looks like everyone was just waiting for a response from another person. I hope I have broken the endless loop of waiting and can continue writing my story here.

Slowing down my braces-story (due to holiday) didn’t help to ease my mind. I started thinking again about how strange I will look like once I started the braces treatment. But things might kick-in very fast now. Depending on the feedback of the specialist.

Hope to give you more info soon!

Mail to my general dentist

Today I have sent a mail to my general dentist asking her how to proceed. I asked her if she already received the medical report of my last visit at the implantologist / periodontist. For some reason she was able to reply back to me in one hour. She told me she didn’t receive the report yet but advised me to contact both the orthodontist and periodontist to start working on a plan. I have already sent an email last week to the periodontist and will write an email tomorrow to the orthodontist.

I remember my orthodontist asking about who will put the implant in place. So now I can give her the information and see what will happen next. My orthodontist might contact the periodontist soon!

Oh my dentist will be on holiday until end of this month and she told me she will look into the medical report afterwards. So probably things will slow down a bit until after summer holidays. Will get back as soon as I get more information from my orthodontist!