As you can probably tell from the title of this post, I am getting braces soon! I am starting a series here on my blog where I will chronicle my experiences with having braces over the next 12 to 18 months. I’m not actually getting my braces yet (the big day is August 5), but today, I got the molds for my braces made, and let me tell you, it was far from boring.
*Note: to protect everyone’s privacy, I will refer to the dental hygienist as The Dental Hygienist and the orthodontist as Dr. Orthodontist.*
The first thing I did at my orthodontist’s appointment this morning was getting a side view X-ray of my teeth. I already had all of the other X-rays done but the side panel, so that is what I did first.
“Bite down hard,” The Dental Hygienist commanded. She then went to the computer to take the X-ray. My jaw was in immense pain from being clenched for so long, so I decided to relax it.
After The Dental Hygienist came back from the computer, she scolded me: “Maisie, you didn’t bite down hard enough. Try again.”
For five minutes, I had to hold my jaw stiff. By the time The Dental Hygienist said that the X-ray was done, I could barely open my mouth without yelping in pain. It was the most successful attempt at getting me to stop talking that I had ever experienced.
After we meandered down the snaky corridors to Dr. Orthodontist’s work station (Dr. Orthodontist’s office is at an enormous university-affiliated dental clinic), The Dental Hygienist told me it was time to get my molds done.
“The key here is to breathe through your nose. Do not, I repeat, DO NOT breathe through your mouth.” The Dental Hygienist explained. She then mixed up a purple substance that looked like Silly Putty and put it in the mold tray. I would be doing my bottom teeth first.
The Dental Hygienist pressed the Silly Putty-like stuff onto my bottom teeth. “Lift up your tongue,” she instructed. I did as I was told, and breathed through my nose, and the bottom mold was done a minute later.
The Dental Hygienist then filled a tray for my top mold with the purple Silly Putty stuff, and pressed it against my top teeth. I could feel the mold against the back of my throat. It felt like a big muscular guy was clenching my neck in the crook of his elbow.
“Breathe through your nose!” The Dental Hygienist pushed.
I tried to, but the big muscular guy would not loosen his grip on my neck. My gag reflex kicked in, and I puked.
I puked all over The Dental Hygienist.
And the dentist’s chair that I was sitting in.
And my favorite pair of DESIGNER WHITE JEAN SHORTS.
For some reason, whenever I throw up, I start crying, and this time was no different. I frantically apologized to The Dental Hygienist, who assured me that I wasn’t the first patient who had puked on her when getting their molds done, and mopped up my shorts with wet paper towels. I drank some water, and The Dental Hygienist tried making the top mold again. However, she let the mold harden a little bit before putting it in my mouth, so it would only have to stay in my mouth for 10 to 15 seconds rather than a whole minute, and she used a smaller mold tray. Miraculously, I didn’t produce a tsunami of yesterday’s dinner after that second attempt. My dad and The Dental Hygienist applauded the successful making of my top mold.
Dr. Orthodontist came in a few minutes later to discuss logistical stuff about getting my braces on and about the procedure that she would follow when I actually got my braces. I’m getting my top braces only first because I have such a huge overbite that they have to move my top teeth up a significant amount before they can work on the bottom teeth.
Needless to say, I had the story of the day at camp.
Next time on Adventures in Orthodontics…Newly Minted Metal Mouth Maisie!