Monday, December 1, 2014

Adult Braces: Getting Spacers aka The Prep Work

Spacers.

I had never heard of these little suckers until I walked into my appointment and said, "I decided to get braces!" (instead of Invisalign)

Immediately, I was escorted to the chair to get my spacers in for a week before the braces.  Apparently these suckers separate your teeth enough to allow for space for the wires to go around your teeth in the back as needed.  My teeth have always loved each other very much and even occasionally gang up in a game of tug-of-war between me and my floss.

They are so tight, in fact, that these cushy-looking foam spacers in the below picture would not fit between my teeth.  I had to have metal.  Ouch.  For some reason, I wasn't prepared.  I didn't realize I wouldn't be able to eat without those metal pieces jamming into my teeth and gums.  On top of that, the pressure of my teeth moving was unlike anything I've ever experienced.  To top it all off, one of the metal pieces did not get along with my bite and came apart to start stabbing my gum in a bloody brawl within 8 hours of placement.  Needless to say, I pulled that sucker out and went back to the doctor the next day.  In just that little bit of time, my teeth had separated enough to allow for a foam spacer, but then my bite is so wonky that I immediately bit right through the thing.  The doctor said it would be okay to wait and work on that particular space later in the process.

I finally started getting used to the spacers one day before I got my braces.  I'd been nibbling at everything with just my front teeth, not yet realizing that front-teeth-nibbling is not something I'd be able to do again until the braces are off.  I had to learn to eat one way with spacers and an entirely opposite way with braces.

When I went in for my application appointment a week later, I was shocked to see how quickly my teeth decided to part ways with each other and leave room for the braces.  Seeing results fast is encouraging.  I was also shocked at how quickly braces are applied because less than an hour later, my life for the next two years was changed.

Adult Braces: Making the Decision
Adult Braces: Getting Spacers aka The Prep Work
Adult Braces: Getting Braces On
Adult Braces: Learning to Eat with Braces
Adult Braces: My First Adjustment
Adult Braces: Rubber Band Replacement (the first few)
Adult Braces: My Second Adjustment
Adult Braces: My Third Adjustment



4 comments:

miss kristen said...

Is that a mold of your toothies?

Larissa said...

These aren't my teeth in the photo. I found this pic several places online and wanted to credit it to it's original source, but no one credited it. Oh well! They took tons of before photos from every angle, so I should have some amazing photos in two years:-)

Casey Jones said...

Thanks for your post about your experience with getting braces as an adult. My dentist recommended that I see an orthodontist to get my teeth straightened out. Hopefully the braces won't be too painful!
http://www.kidbraces.com/meetstaff.htm

Anonymous said...

Great post, actaully i was searching for spacer for braces, but it is also helping me. Getting my braces 1st. I also want to give credit to this link. http://dentgap.com/spacers-for-braces/