Day 84: Chocolate Fail

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

This is why I don’t grow beards. Ever.

I think I’m going to make tomorrow my shaving day. My patchy beard is growing out of control. If you’ll notice, I can’t connect my mustache to the rest of my facial hair, so I end up looking, well, dirty. I can appreciate a solid mustache, but I cannot stand the thin, wispy excuse that’s growing on my face.

I attempted to eat a chocolate the other day. What I discovered was that, due to the appliance in the roof of my mouth, I can’t actually suck on any type of candy because my tongue just mashes it through the appliance. So, instead of gracefully enjoying a tasty chocolate, I couldn’t speak for the 10 minutes it took me to break it down in fear of expelling chocolate spittle everywhere.

Sadly, I wasn’t the one who caught this behemoth, but let’s satisfy my pride and pretend that I did.

I also started whistling yesterday, as per this kind piece of advice. I’ve been told that it will help break up the scar tissue in my face, thus loosening me up a bit. I was quite surprised that I was able to make a whistling sound properly. Never underestimate yourself.

As far as my recovery goes, I’m still numb in my lower left chin and lip, my bite remains open and I continue to have 16 teeth in elastics almost 24 hours per day. I’ve been feeling slight discomfort when I chew because my top teeth are hitting my bottom brackets once again. That metal striking bone combination is far from relaxing. If it’s still bothering me in a couple of days, I’m going to head back to my orthodontist and get rubber bumpers put on my bottom brackets again.

This weekend, I managed to go for a 25 km bike ride, weed a flower bed and slice up a 25 lb salmon. I guess this means I can no longer excuse myself from physically demanding tasks by saying, “Sorry, I just had jaw surgery.” Shucks.


  1. Hi, after exactly 1 year from the operation I still feel my lower lip a little bit swollen/numb like with certain movements.
    Do you think that it will be back to normal by time or there may be some nerves damaged?

    Thanks for the work on this blog it helped me a lot during my dark times 🙂


  2. Today is day 84 for me, I have had basically no pain since week 3, been able to eat almost anything since week 4. My issue is I can hardly open my mouth, I feel like I have made no progress, my eating a chicken burger is downright hilarious as I try to flatten it and look for a small ish bite.
    I have feeling back on most of my face, my chin if I touch it is more tingle/pins and needles feelings, i have no feeling inside my mouth, especially the right side, I stick to chewing on the left.
    Overall I’m happy I’ve done this surgery but I cannnot wait until I can open my mouth AND have no more braces (May they will be off for sure, still praying they’ll be off by April)
    Your blog helped me decide I wanted to go through with this surgery, thank you for keeping this up for all of us that are/have undergone similar surgeries.
    I also use instagram, there are a few of us that #doublejawsurgery it’s nice as it’s people going through the same thing right now, sharing photos and chatting back and forth has been very helpful.

    Thank you again,

  3. Hey Graham,
    It’s my 84th day of double jaw surgery for underbite. My lower lip and chin is still numb, very stiff, with pins/needles whenever I touch or move it. As you have mentioned, whatever you’re left with after 8-12 weeks is likely what you’ll have to live with. I’m very worried about this discomfort in my lower lip and chin. Am I going to live with these pins and needles for ever? Or if they go away with time, do you recall when did you get rid of this discomfort?

    Thanks so much for this amazing blog. It’s such a blessing…

    • Billy, most of my feeling came back during the initial 12 weeks, though some people have mentioned feeling returning for up to 6 months. As for pins and needles, those should definitely go away. However, since you’re only at 3 months post-op, I wouldn’t worry just yet. Give yourself another month and see if the uncomfortable sensation goes away. =)

  4. Hi Sara,

    It took roughly two months for the majority of my feeling to return. I’ve been told that feeling will trickle back up until the six-month mark, but what you’re left with after 8 — 12 weeks is likely what you’ll have to live with.

    You’ll get used to the numb patches. You’ll likely only notice them when applying makeup, but even that will feel normal after a few months.

    Don’t give up hope until the six-month mark, though!

  5. Hi Graham!

    Its my 83rd day of surgery today! I actually couldn’t even remember the exact day until I calculated them lol

    Is the feeling in parts of my chin ever going to come back though? I can feel it prickling when I run makeup brushes over it, but I’m still worried..

    Thanks for your witty blogs that kept me smiling (painfully) the first week!


  6. I can picture archaeological digs millennia down the road, thinking us utter barbarians for what we do to ourselves in the name of science.

    But for those of us who live with it, it’s better than the alternatives…

  7. Thanks for the great answers!

    It feels good to be armed with the septum trimming info. I like to have at least a bit of preliminary knowledge before asking the surgeon questions or else I just start blanking out and nodding my head in mindless agreement as he talks.

    I think I’ll add the weight-gainers to my workouts just in case. It can’t hurt to have a bit extra to lose.

    Thanks again!

  8. Hi Sam!

    They cut my upper jaw into 3 pieces and filled the cracks in with a few millimeters of cadaver bone. They also trimmed my septum so my nose wouldn’t be pushed up.

    I would just trust your surgeon. I didn’t even know they had to touch my nose during the surgery. I only found out once it was all done that they had fixed it a bit. I don’t notice any functional change or nuisance though.

    I gained weight beforehand by simply eating A LOT of food. I was doing weight-gaining shakes from the gym, eating about 4 big meals per day and working out like crazy. To be honest, I don’t think it did anything. A few weeks post-op, you’re going to weigh the same whether you gain 100 lbs right now or not. You’ll just lose it all really fast because it’s not your natural weight.

    If you’ve got other questions, keep asking!

  9. Hey Graham, I’ve been following your blog for awhile and it’s definitely the best looking/organized one I’ve seen so far.
    I’ve got pretty much the same surgery coming up and I’m curious about how much they moved your upper jaw forward. I’m wondering because your nose turned out really well…did you notice any major nose changes? Do you know if your surgeon did anything special to minimize the changes? I’ve seen some ‘after’ pictures with major upward tilts that are making me nervous.
    Also, how did you gain 20lbs pre-surgery? Any tips?

  10. They told me not to expect any feeling to return until at least 3 months have passed. That date is quickly approaching.

    However, people regain feeling anywhere from a few weeks to a few years, so you can’t really pinpoint when it’s going to happen.

  11. Ew – metal + bone – not a fun experience. At all.

    What’s the MD say about the numbness, or have they talked to you about that yet?

Leave a Reply

“Over the past several years, I’ve done my best to respond to every comment on this blog, but unfortunately I no longer have the time to do so. If you have questions about jaw surgery and want to connect with others on this journey, please join the Facebook group. Don't worry — it's free!”