Wedding Date

My sister has officially set her wedding date as September 3, 2011. That is going to be almost exactly three months after my surgery.

I am so frustrated, it's hard to even be happy for her. I know I am being selfish, but sometimes it's hard to help being that way. I am going to be playing a pretty huge role in the planning of this wedding, and it's just WAY too much going on at once. Balancing school, two jobs, surgery and a wedding is just going to be too much all at once. She initially told me 2013, so 6 months from now is quite the change.

I know I shouldn't be swollen anymore, but after reading so many blogs, I know that people are still dealing with healing 3 months out. Some still can't fully chew whatever they want. Some people have lopsided smiles. Wider noses. A lot of people aren't quite used to their face yet.

Sorry for all the complaints. I am just not a happy camper right now.

Valentine's Day

MY SISTER GOT ENGAGED!! on Valentine's Day!

and she wants to have the wedding THIS October. Meaning...I will still be in braces.

I had a mini heart attack when my sister called me today and asked if I would be all healed up from surgery by October. The FIRST thing that popped into my head was 'What if I am not? What if something happens and I am still swollen and don't look like ME at my only sister's wedding?'

It sucks that every single part of my life has to be molded around this surgery. I know it's an important surgery, but I keep kicking myself for not having it gotten done sooner. There were no big events that this surgery could have gotten in the way of my freshman/sophomore year of college. And now there is graduation and weddings and moving away. Ugh, I absolutely positively do NOT want to have braces during my one guaranteed time of being the Maid of Honor.

It's still very early, and she is just throwing around dates, but I am praying to god she holds off long enough for me to get these dang things off my teeth.

I scheduled my next appointment with my OS. It's not until the end of March, but I am already excited about it. At my next appointment, I am 2 months from surgery!

Springs 'n' Things

I had my rescheduled ortho appointment yesterday. We discussed the conversation I had with my OS, who is conveniently located right across the hall from my OD, so they are in constant communication with one another. Therefore, my OD was pretty up to date on where everything was at. We discussed the May surgery date, and he thinks that is going to work out fine. It was such a great thing to hear! Dr S decided we needed to get things moving towards surgery now, so I now have stainless steel archwires (20's) with little springs between teeth 2 and 3 on both sides. I was told that the stainless steel wires are a lot stiffer, and the springs are supposed to create gaps between my teeth to get them ready for surgery. I am praying to god that these are just teensy tiny gaps, because they are RIGHT in the front of my mouth, and surgery is still 3.5 months away. I am not going to be a happy girl if I have big gaps in the front of my teeth! Have either of my May buddies heard anything about these springs? My teeth are definitely feeling the new adjustment. My entire face is killing me!

You can already see the gap forming beneath the spring and it's been one day. Isn't this working backwards not forwards?

I am going to start having appointments more often now, so my next appointment is scheduled for 3 weeks from now, and I will be doing molds each appointment from here on out.

I saw one of the OA's working with another patient on SureSmile. For those of you who aren't familiar with it, it's a new treatment method that uses a computer system that they input all of your xrays/photos in and the computer then helps you bend and form the wire in a way that will help you get the desired results in a shorter amount of time. Anyway, I was told at the beginning of my treatment that they would be using this technology to decrease my time in braces. I meant to ask, but I am not entirely sure if that's still the plan. I am thinking that they work on straightening out the teeth first, and may start using it either closer to the surgery date, or post-surgery to get me out of the braces quicker! Has or is anyone else using SureSmile?

For those of you who are from outside of the Midwest, and are soaking up anything above 20 degrees, here is the current weather report in Minnesota.
Yes, that says '-3 degrees, feels like -19' and it has been that way for three days. Today we hit a whoppin' high of about 2 degrees with a -15 degree wild chill. This is one major reason I am so thankful to be having surgery in summer. I cannot imagine Minnesota winters would aid in my recovery one bit.

It's nearly my 6 month in braces mark, so I will be posting progress pictures soon!

Appointment with Surgeon

I was supposed to have an OD appointment yesterday, but I got a call on Sunday saying Dr. S was really sick and I had to reschedule for next Monday. I was bummed that the appointment was cancelled, because due to Australia it will now be about 8 weeks between my next appointment and my previous one.

I met with my oral surgeon today, Dr. M, which was really exciting! I met with him initially in October of 2009, so it's been a while. He is actually the second oral surgeon I have met with. I previously met with another OS closer to my college prior to meeting with Dr. M, and then met with that surgeon once again after my meeting with Dr. M, but I just wasn't feeling the connection with the other guy as much. I was worried after finding out that my mom's insurance wouldn't cover the surgery done by Dr. M, but because we both felt more comfortable with him, and he was referred to me by my OS, so she ended up switching her insurance provider this year.

The most exciting news to report is he said I will definitely be ready for surgery by May! He is thinking a week after I finish my finals, so sometime mid to late May. He described the whole procedure to me again and said we would definitely be doing upper and lower jaws. I asked him quite a few questions while I was there, I think he was a bit surprised, but was really willing to help me understand.

How much movement will there be?
They will be moving the bottom jaw 6 mm forward and rotating the upper jaw upward to fit correctly with the bottom jaw. I had always thought that the upper jaw surgery always entailed of lifting the jaw upward, so it was interesting to hear that my issue needed a rotation.

How many surgeries does he do a year?
25-30. I kind of expected to hear a higher number than that... but from what others have told me, this number is normal. I am from a small town, so although some surgeons do 70+ surgeries a year, there just isn't the demand where I'm from!

Does upper jaw surgery causes widening of the nose?
They put little stitches on each side of my nose to keep that from happening as much as possible, whew! I have a really little face and do NOT need a bigger nose!

Is there a way I can get prediction images?
It's something my OD could do for me, so I will try to get them asap!

How much time will I have to take off work?
About 2 weeks. I know most people reading my blog have read many other blogs, so I am wondering what you all think is the normal time people have to take off work after surgery? I need to take 3 weeks off of my job as a receptionist for a course I have to take to graduate, and the least amount of time I can take off for the surgery, the better. I just took a month off to fly to Australia, so I don't think they are going to be thrilled when I have to ask for two massive chunks of time off during the summer!

Will the upper surgery help with my breathing? I have had two septoplasties and both have resulted in going back to the initial position.
Yes, it might. Many patients notice a significant change in their ability to breath through their nose after surgery. If the surgery does not fix the problem, I will have to wait at least a year before getting another septoplasty.

What do you require for the diet for the first week of recovery?
He no longer requires strictly liquid. Anything soft enough to just swallow without chewing, so apple sauce, banana, etc.

I won't be meeting with him again for another 2 months, but this was the jist of what I learned today. He said he'd be meeting with Dr. S my OD soon to look at the molds of my teeth and discuss a proper time line. I will be updating again after my OD appointment next Monday.

Oh, and I received a date invitation last night for Valentine's Day :) If only I knew there was something with guys and these braces I would have gotten them on ages ago! :-P