Day 68: Jaw Surgery X-Rays

  • Pain: 0/10
  • Inconvenience: 2/10

I ate a few Premium Plus crackers the other day. Question: Do you know what it’s like to be able to bite a cracker with your front teeth ahead of your bottom teeth? It’s incredible. You don’t even have to tear things apart when your teeth are where they’re supposed to be!

The one thing that I currently find extremely frustrating is the fact that, when I eat, I’m constantly chewing on my cheeks. I’ve yet to get used to this foreign mouth the doctors installed in me. I think it has an agenda of its own because it keeps trying to chew on my very own flesh. It’s not a problem though–I’ll tame it sooner or later.

I finally received my x-rays from my surgeon’s office. I’ll let the photos do the talking for me. (You can click on each picture to see it in all of its full-sized splendor.)

Shortly after recieving braces (Feb. 11, 2008) — Notice the underbite!

Shortly after receiving braces (Feb. 11, 2008) — Are you convinced my bite was poor enough to warrant surgery now?

Pre-surgery (Feb 9, 2010)

Pre-surgery (Feb 9, 2010) — I challenge you to try biting an apple, or even a chip, when your front teeth act like two positive magnets.

Post-surgery (May 10, 2010) — My bite looks fixed… from the side!

Post-surgery (May 10, 2010) — My journey to becoming a robot begins here.

There you have it–a visual journey via x-rays! I never realized how crooked my bite was before the braces worked their magic. You can also clearly see the open bite on the left side of my mouth, along with the 8 titanium plates screwed into my skull, in the last photo. Phase 1 of my “Become a Terminator” project is now complete.

20 Comments

  1. Hi Sylvia,

    Those brackets are completely painless. I can feel them if I press on certain parts of my face, but they just feel like a little bump on the bone.

    Once the bone has fused back together, I doubt the brackets serve any real purpose. I think they leave them in just to avoid having to put you through another surgery to extract them.

    Let me know how the appointment goes,

    Graham

  2. I had this surgery August of 2009 because of constant headaches and neck pain. It helped quite a bit, but of course some draw backs like can’t feel most of my chin because of nerve damage, and this bit with my brackets. Going back to the surgeon in July to see if he’s gonna take them out.

  3. My x-rays look very similar to yours and I was wondering if the brackets on each side of your nostrils hurt (like a cold tooth feeling) alot. Same with your bottom jaw ones. Do they hurt?

  4. Glad you found it helpful, Sarah! Have fun on the 25th. Make sure to ask as many questions as you can.

  5. I have the same probelm, an underbite. i have a consultation may 25th to see what the doctor thinks about me getting this surgery. ive used your blogs to get insight as to what the recovery might be like if i do go through with it, so thanks for making it! haha.

  6. I can taste but can’t feel much, suspect that’s why the my food is doing strange things. At least i’m providing entertainment for family and friends watching me!

  7. Discantus, you can’t taste anything? Or you just can’t feel anything?

  8. Ooh I sympathise, i’ve been practising chewing these last few days but my mouth is having none of it! I’m not sure which is worse either, your self cannibalisation or my stone dead palate. Still, practise practise…

  9. No, I can’t eat everything yet. The popcorn I kind of just sucked the life out of them swallowed 🙂

    Things like chicken and sausages etc I can chew somewhat, and it doesn’t hurt. I’m not ready to try steak or pizza crust. My bite is not closed yet. Molars touch on the left (the side with the bottom molar missing so cannot chew on that side). But my molars still do not meet on the right side, but they have closed maybe halfway, so I can get pieces of food in there and chew, just not to the extent I’d like. Food that is not chunky does not fit between them that well (like Kraft Dinner). I tried chewing some undercooked carrot slices on Saturday and couldn’t do it, so gave them to Leighton.

    I had toast with dinner tonight and that went OK.

    And I still feel really awkward eating as I don’t really know how still as the position of all my teeth – especially the front teeth – still feels weird.

  10. So can you eat just about anything again? That was really fast, Audra!

    I’m going to try grilled chicken sometime this week. It’s getting better every day, but my bite is still completely open on the left side.

    Did your elastics do their job already?

  11. Graham, I too remember not being able to bite into sandwiches etc, and instead have to tear it apart. What a pain! It is really cool to be able to bite into a cookie/cracker/whatever with my front teeth – the way I’m supposed to be able to.

    Still trying to learn to chew – and I also bite the inside of my cheeks. Had popcorn at the movies the other night, which was so nice. I wasn’t going to try, but thought what the hell. I have yet to try pizza to yay for you!!!!

    Your x-rays are very cool.

  12. All in good time, all in good time…your jaw should still be settling in, right?

  13. Oh, and Kate, I ate pizza today! It took me 1 and a half hours to chew through 4 slices, and I couldn’t eat the crusts, and I still swallowed a lot of HUGE pieces, but it tasted soooo good!

    You were absolutely right! Once you start chewing, it comes back fast! I wish I could chew on both sides though. 🙁

  14. Judy, I’m so glad you understand my frustration!

    Most people just think I had the surgery done because I’m shallow and self-conscious and wanted to look better.

    It’s nice when people who actually “get it” can relate.

  15. I’m sure you know this, but you won’t set off any metal detectors. Sorry.

    Maybe you’re Iron Jaw?

  16. yup, that’s a lot of metal. i wonder how airport security will respond to that.
    i can relate to your pre-surgical eating frustration. i couldn’t eat sandwiches. sandwich meat, lettuce etc. would always just slide right through my bite!

  17. I think my mouth is looking borderline bionic for people with x-ray vision.

  18. My boyfriend likes to say that I got robotic upgrades at the hospital. However, my smattering of titanium is nothing compared to yours. Good job, sir!

  19. Promise to warn us of the robo-apocalypse, since we’re your friends, and all?

    Cool pictures!

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