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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9 thoughts on “X-rays before lingual braces

  1. Hi there,

    Thanks for sharing your story so far. I was so happy to find your blog as I also started wearing lingual braces early this year and I’m also a 27 yr old girl.

    My treatment is done in Paris. I had my top braces on in March and my lower braces 5 weeks later. And yes, I had to remove 4 teeths AFTER putting on my braces (strange I know!).

    The dentist was instructed to extract 4 premolars. Admittedly I was very scared before and during the extraction. I knew that the roots go very deep … However, my dentist was very gentle and extremely experienced, I trusted him 100 percent. I did feel my skull and the lower jaw resisting to pull though, like “crack, crack, crack!” he he, but again, my dentist did a wonderful job. The extraction went well and it was not painful at all. I had pain killers immediately after the extraction and during 2 or 3 days afterwards.

    The resulting gaps are quite further back so they’re not really noticeable. However, my ortho suggested putting two “fake teeths” in place of the upper premolars. The fake teeths are two rather thin pieces of plastics (or ceramics?!) attached to the side of real teeths. The ortho used the famous blue light you mentioned in your earlier post to melt the side of the fake teeths and stick them to the real teeths. The gaps left by the lower premolars are not noticeable when I speak or smile at all. So, as far as appearance goes, I really don’t mind.

    The real problem is that it’s now even more difficult to eat. As if it were not already bad enough, without the premolars, I can’t chew my food properly at all. The food keep running into the gaps. I just have get to get used to swallow big pieces of food or eating even softer food. For lunch at work with colleages it can be a little awkward, I have swallow really quickly in order to catch up with them.

    The best is to figure yourself in 2 years with beautiful teeth, and get over with lunch 🙂

    • Thanks for commenting and it’s great to hear my blog’s been useful to you. It’s really interesting to hear from someone who started their treatment at the same time as me – what’s your expected treatment length?

      Having teeth extracted sounds quite frightening (crack, crack, crack…. argh!!!) but it’s good to hear that you found a dentist you trust. I think in this whole braces thing that’s so important. After all, you’re letting someone practice their craft on your face!

      I’m fairly sure now that eating is going to be annoying throughout my whole treatment. It’s not painful anymore (apart from for a few days after adjustments) but getting all the bits stuck is really boring. Even things that are soft to eat seem to be the things that get lodged the most, like rice and bolognese sauce. As you say, it’s fine when you’re on your own or with friends but at work lunches I always find myself ordering hardly anything and going hungry because I’m conscious of bits getting stuck in my brace and because I eat soooo slowly now. Also, I notice my lisp gets worse again just after I’ve eaten because of the little pieces of food. I’m back to normal again once I’ve brushed but in a restaurant that’s not easy.

      Thanks again for sharing your experience – I’d love to compare updates again!

  2. Hi there,

    My expected treatment length is between 18 months and 2 years, although I expect it to be 2 years, since I see my ortho every 5 weeks and I have 4 gaps after the premolars’ extraction. Contrary to your case, I have not seen any improvement in my teeth department at all (even worse with the gaps), so congratulations for all the amazing changes shown on your photos. I hope you smile a lot more often now and not just inside 😉

    I also had my wisdom teeth pulled out a year prior to my treatment. They were pushing out in all different directions, none of which the right one, lol! So now I don’t have a lot teeth left…, which is a bit worrying, hm.

    As for your wisdom teeth, they look to be fine to me, but I suggest you talk to your ortho about them anyway. One of my colleagues wore braces when he was a teenager, and everything was fine until his wisdom teeth grew and pushed the others out of place.

    My lisp gets me all the time, especially because I’m speaking French at work and it’s not my mother tongue. I stop worrying about it and just speak more slowly when it gets me. I think if you’re nervous by the lisp it’ll only get worse. So brave it!

    Have a good day and I look forward to reading your next post.

    • Yes, I will definitely talk to my ortho about my wisdom teeth and what to do if I feel them coming through at any point.
      I agree that you can’t let the lisping get you down – if you don’t carry talking as usual you’ll have a pretty miserable couple of years.

      Perhaps you should take up Spanish rather than French… then a lisp would be an advantage! Lol!

  3. Just found this blog – thanks for writing it!

    I am 51 have had lingual braces for less than a week now and have a terrible lisp and find it difficult to eat etc – but I feel reassured that this will get better over time.

    The reason I have had these braces fitted at such a late age is that I have three teeth that are in danger of falling out due to pressure of overcrowding. Then I lost a tooth last year which made my teeth move even more and they became even more crooked.

    As a teenager, I had two upper “number 4” teeth extracted (count four teeth back from either side of the front two teeth) which left gaps that never closed. This proved to be a very costly mistake as now my dentist says she doesn’t think she will be able to close the gaps completely. I also will have to have an implant in place of the tooth I lost last year. All very expensive, painful and time consuming – but to be honest – I will pay whatever it costs as I don’t want to turn into a toothless old hag!

    • Hi Emma – I hope your treatment is going well. The first few weeks are definitely the worst so I’m sure by now you’ve got used to everything. I think it’s great that you decided to get lingual braces – it’s never too late to enjoy smiling again!

      • Thanks for writing back! Well I’ve had my braces for a year now and the teeth are definitely getting much straighter. I still have a lisp which is worse when I speak English (thankfully not all the time) as there are too many th’s and s’s! Eating is not all that enjoyable but the plus side of that is that I have lost 5 kilos! Also cleaning them is a pain – but never mind – it will all be worth it in six months time – which is when I hope to have the braces removed. Yay!

      • Hi Emma – I’m really pleased you’re getting on ok and starting to enjoy the difference to your teeth. You’re right, keeping your braces clean is annoying, but at least it’s not painful! Good luck.

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