I was SO looking forward to getting this thing out, but at the same time dreading it because I knew it was going to be nasty. And boy was it nasty. Took a few minutes, but after a snip of about 4 wires that were wiring the splint to my top teeth, it was free. As soon as it broke free from my teeth, I got a whiff of nasty that came up and assaulted my nose. I let out an audible "ick" and my surgeon kind of laughed and said something along the lines of "yeah, that is how these usually go." Yuck, at least it's not just me. So, he warns me to be gentle with my teeth feeling them out together for the first time without the splint. Everything is in new positions and it's going to feel funny. I remember this last time I got unwired, so I was totally expecting the initial weirdness again. And it's just as weird as I remember it, even though last time my teeth really weren't touching in the right places like I thought at first. My left side feels pretty good, and as advertised before surgery, my right side is a little open....but barely. Only a millimeter or two to close up there. We're pretty close and my surgeon was pretty happy. And I am pretty happy! He held up a mirror while I was in the chair, and I couldn't believe what I was seeing. My teeth meeting together for the first time in my life. So weird looking at it AND feeling it for the first time. For the first time my bicuspids have pressure on them from meeting a bottom tooth under it. Usually I just bite on my back molars and that is it. Now ALL of my teeth are engaged, and it feels really funny! Something to get used to for sure! I got cleared for soft chew and I am already experiencing that robotic feeling of trying to chew. You're still numb and teeth are all in new spots hitting new teeth they've never met properly before, and it feels like you're trying to chew with a robot jaw. It's hard to describe and only something somebody who has gone through this will definitely understand what I am trying to say.
I was sitting in the chair and kind of started to get a little teary eyed again over all of this. It's so overwhelming. My surgeon knows this is especially true for me after the long road for my case. I again took the chance to thank him. Told him that I am more than aware that he didn't have to take me on and how difficult of a case I was. And not that I doubted him and what he could do, but told him again how all of this has just exceeded the realistic expectations I set for what I wanted out of this correction surgery. He said I sure was a difficult case, but he was happy to help me out. And he doesn't blame me for having doubts, and it's super common after what I experienced through my initial case. I took that chance to tell him I am also thankful that he not only dealt with a difficult medical case, but he took on somebody who was emotionally broken and had zero trust for any doctor, and he did it with such patience and understanding. I hope he really knows how much I appreciate all of his work and patience.
My ortho too. He's had to deal with the same physically and emotionally broken person. Speaking of that, I went over to my ortho's office right after my surgeon. More smiles from everybody there too. I can tell everybody is really genuinely happy and relieved-- probably as much as I am! My ortho has this different vibe to him. Like I can feel his relief and satisfaction too, and he looks kind of excited/giddy to do his magic and perfect his art. And I still can't get over how involved he has me with everything. He asked me how everything felt, and I could tell he was genuinely interested in what I was saying when it came to feeling out my bite. And like he said to me a few weeks ago, he really trusts what I say since I'm usually not wrong, so if I say it feels a certain way, he's taking it seriously. I told him that my left feels pretty OK, and my right side feels open but not to a point where I am worried we're not outside of the "normal" range where it's fixed easily with ortho post op and pretty much feels how my pre op molds showed it would. He said "yep, exactly!" So, he didn't waste any time and right away put me in 1 class II heavy elastic on my left to keep my bite in line, and then on my right he's got an up/down band between my molars and then a triangle between teeth 5/6 and goes down to my lower K9; hopefully this closes my bite up on this side and gets me class I all around. He said he's going to set my appointment for 4 weeks, but for me to feel free to drop in any time in between without notice if I want him to check on anything or just want to know if everything is looking OK. Again, sweet of him to do that. I mean, I think he's doing it for him because it gives him a chance to monitor more, and also for me since he knows I am still kind of walking on egg shells and do need the extra reassurance that we are in fact OK this time. Otherwise, he plans on a wire change at the next appointment. They cut my surgical hooks off the front of my teeth and kept the ones on the sides for the elastic configuration he has me in. Both he and the assistant both jumped and kind of went "whoa!" when they saw how wide I could open already. Like last time, I think I have more opening than most people get right away. Less this time vs. first time since I am in bands not allowing me to open as much now, but still more than the normal patient. So, I think he knows he is more than OK to do a wire swap on this next appointment. Another sweet thing that happened when I was leaving the office is the treatment coordinator, who I don't talk to much but has been such a sweetheart from the moment I talked to her to book my initial consult, stopped me for a second to take a look at my surgery results. Again like the doc and all, she just looked so genuinely happy and caring. She said she was so happy for me and can still remember my first time in her office to meet them and hearing my story and seeing my tears thinking they weren't going to want to take me on as a patient and that I was screwed. She said she is so happy it worked out this way and they are so happy to be the ones to help me get to a happy ending after such a sad story. It really means a lot to me how much everybody across the board on my new team really cares, and rightfully so, they are proud of the work they've done to get me out of a really bad place my last team left me in.
So, all continues to check out. I see Dr. Karas in two weeks, and Dr. Cuenin in 4. I am cleared for soft chew!! Yay!! I ate scrambled eggs this morning, and it was SO glorious!! Planning on soft white fish, quinoa, and some overcooked veggies tonight. So looking forward to that! I can't stop looking at my bite-- for a few reasons. 1.) I still can't believe my teeth are sitting in the right positions finally, and 2.) I am still waiting for the other shoe to drop and see the bite start to go all crazy and out of alignment, so I'm paranoid checking it all the time to make sure we're still good to go. I had trouble sleeping last night, and I think a little of it was anxiety that my bite was floating back where it shouldn't be now that I am out of the full tight bands across my front teeth. I have a feeling this will just take some time to get over. Otherwise, quick update on the numbness and everything else. I've had a huge improvement in feeling in my upper face.....finally! So, feeling good there. Lower lip and chin I feel like is getting more tingly, but still not super bad nerve zingers yet. So, hopefully a good sign there, but overall I would still call it dead numb for now. Swelling is still the same-- the puffiness left, and will probably linger the next 2 months or so.
Time to stop rambling. This has already become a much longer update than what I expected it to be. Here is a short video update and some shots after my splint removal. Don't mind the just rolled out of bed head on the video. One of these days I'll actually put some make up on and something other than my PJ's to do an update! Look at that bite!!!! I still can't believe it. Like, I keep having to pinch myself!!