Tuesday, April 22, 2008

still swollen gums

I've been gone for a bit. I had a pretty nasty cold (I'm still recovering slowly) and I've been busy at school with state mandated testing stuff and choral contest coming up. Yikes.

So, the gums aren't really better. I called last week and asked what I should do, and they told me to wait it out and see if it gets worse. Of course, it got worse so I made an appointment for this afternoon. They were located at the office that's furthest away from my house, but I went anyway, ended up waiting for 45 minutes after my appointment time, and then the orthodontist barely looked at me before telling me I was worrying about nothing.

Now, this is unusual. I love my orthodontists. I had a rotten end to my day at school, so I was feeling a little sensitive, and I hit traffic on the way to the appointment and freaked out about being late (remember the first braces fiasco? now I'm paranoid about being late to an appointment).

The reason, he tells me, is that my swelling is due to my tooth pushing forward into line - and pushing all of that extra gum tissue with it. He says to clean my best, but that "I haven't seen swelling yet." What does that mean?

To put it lightly, argh, I am not satisfied.

Sunday, April 13, 2008

swollen gums

So I'm a bit of a compulsive teeth brusher. Many fellow bloggers have admitted to letting things slide a bit after having braces for a while, but I am not one of them yet. I brush in the morning. I brush in the afternoon after lunch. I usually brush after dinner, but always take a long, long brushing and flossing at night before bed with the fluoride paste and the million little brushes. Every time something enters my mouth I make sure to at least rinse, I often brush.

Another side note for the upcoming question: I have swollen gums. I am a mouth breather at night, and the orthodontist says that makes my gums worse. My gums on my lower teeth used to be incredibly swollen because there were parts of them I couldn't get to with a brush or floss, but after the three months or so of braces, they have become healthy and pretty much normal.

My top teeth, however (here comes the question!), seem to be doing terribly with my new braces. Despite the normal brushing/ flossing routine that whipped my lower gums into shape from the beginning, the top gums keep getting worse and worse. In fact, there is one spot where my gums are approaching the bracket on my tooth, and will probably encroach the tooth by tomorrow or Tuesday.

Should I call the orthodontist for this? I mean, I'm doing ALL OF THE RIGHT THINGS. I'm not some 12 year old who doesn't brush or floss. I'm not eating things I'm not supposed to eat (except corn chips, but I make sure to break them into really really small pieces). It should be getting better, at least in my non-professional-worried-about-everything opinion.

I'm worried that stuff is going to get trapped underneath the gums and over the bracket, or that I could develop an infection or something. I could brush more, or floss more, but that seems like it might make things worse....

What do you guys think? Should I call the orthodontist, or just keep on keepin' on?

PS. Thanks for all of the support with the new upper braces, by the way. They feel much more natural, they don't hurt very much, and my lips feel like they're starting to fit over them nicely. You guys are amazing :)

Tuesday, April 1, 2008


The braces are terrible. So terrible, in fact, that despite taking pictures for later reference, I was not sure if I could bring myself to show the rest of the world. But this morning, I have better resolve, better tylenol, and a better sense of humor. So, here we go. Huge, terrible, so big-my-lips-don't-really-fit-over-them braces. Yikes.

And they hurt like... well, they hurt. Last night was worse than this morning, except for my jaw. My jaw is deciding to declare mutiny on the rest of my skull and teeth and is throwing HUGE fits for reasons unknown. My top teeth don't hurt TOO terribly yet (though I already miss being able to "bite" into things), but that new wire on the lowers is movin' and shakin', let me tell you. Can't wait to see all the progress.

But MAN, do they look awful! If only my lips fit over them in any way.... Hopefully that improves soon.