X-rays before lingual braces

Don’t worry folks, Halloween hasn’t come early… I was backing up my computer this weekend and stumbled across the x-rays I had taken before my lingual braces were made. So, I thought I’d share them with you:

I’m no expert and don’t really know what these x-rays show from an orthodontic perspective – although you can see my overbite in the photo above. I now have some kind of dental cement stuff on my back teeth to stop my teeth ‘clashing’ when I bite together, which would risk my brackets being knocked off. See this post for more about how my ortho changed my bite when fitting my braces and how this made it difficult to eat.

{both © Inside I’m Smiling}

You can also see my wisdom teeth right at the back, which haven’t come through yet. One of the things I need to ask my ortho is what I should do if they do erupt in future because I’d be distraught if they pushed my teeth out of place again. I’m 28 now… does anyone know if they might still come through at my age?

The other thing that’s interesting about these x-rays is how deep the roots of the teeth go. I am soooo pleased that I didn’t have to have any extractions before getting my lingual braces as the very thought scares me to death. It’s incredible to think how orthodontics has changed over time – when I was a teenager and supposed to have traditional braces they planned to remove four teeth. Now, my ortho plans to file a little of the enamel between some of the teeth to create a little extra room if needed, but no teeth need to be taken out at all. Amazing huh?

Did you have to have teeth extracted before you got your lingual (or other) braces? I’ve had a couple of comments from people who have and I’ve heard it can be quite traumatic and difficult to come to terms with the gaps…

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My teeth: four months into my lingual braces journey

Hello again! It’s about four months since I had my lingual braces put on and I’m getting ready for my third new wire tomorrow. Here are a few photos of how my teeth are looking at this stage.

Inside I'm Smiling lingual braces blog{© Inside I’m Smiling}

This is really the first point where I’ve started to feel confident about my new smile. Since my last update I’ve grown happy to show my teeth when smiling in photos (something I never did before) and I’ve even worn red lipstick for the first time… again, something I never would’ve done before as I always avoided drawing attention to my mouth!

When I decided to get lingual braces I was excited by the idea that 18-22 months later I would have a smile I could show off. I know my teeth aren’t perfect yet, but I’ve been surprised at how my confidence has grown after a relatively short time and I can start enjoying smiling even before my orthodontist has finished his work.

However, I need to start practicing my new smile! For so long it’s become second nature to keep my lips closed whenever there was a camera pointing in my direction. Now I have to keep reminding myself that I can smile properly…but it still feels very strange to me!

Inside I'm Smiling lingual braces blog{© Inside I’m Smiling}

You can see from the photos of the inside surfaces of my teeth that I had proper brackets fitted to all my teeth at my last adjustment appointment. As usual, I experienced some aching pain for about the first week but since then I’ve been feeling pretty comfortable with my lingual braces.

The tongue pain I experienced at the beginning is almost gone. Now I just have the odd day of achy teeth between adjustments. My speech is more-or-less normal again (I still need to concentrate hard when I need to make an ‘st’ sound but I don’t think other people really notice anymore). Eating with my braces is ok too – again, when my teeth are aching I opt for softer foods again but in general I feel I have much more choice about what I can eat with braces than in the early days. It’s the food getting stuck in the wires and brackets that’s most annoying now!

So, wish me luck with tomorrow’s appointment. And thanks to those of you have left me comments recently about your journeys with lingual braces or your decision process in improving your smile. Don’t forget, you can add your comment by clicking the speech bubble symbol at the top of every post. It’s so nice to hear from others with similar experiences and your comments make writing this blog worthwhile 🙂