Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Happy birthday to me! :X

I haven't been blogging lately coz I've been kinda bummed. I guess after reading so many blogs I expected things to get worse before they get better, as with everything thing else you can deal with, but I guess since this is such a big deal the waiting hurts more and the patience decreases.

Remember when I said the dental insurance got canceled but the medical insurance was still active? Well, not anymore! Apparently the medical insurance provider wasn't as kind as the dental as to send me a letter letting me know it'll be canceled at a certain date. They went ahead and canceled it right on my birthday. Isn't that nice? What a lovely birthday gift. At least the dental insurance had the decency to extend insurance til the end of my birth month.

I got a call from my surgeon's office the day after my birthday to let me know and that's how I found out. Because I no longer had insurance my appointment had to be canceled. Oh this is just the GREATEST news! I was told I can make another appt when I get insurance again. Since it's my dad's insurance he went ahead and called them to see if there's anything that can be done. We were hoping for an extension or maybe a temporary insurance. The rep told us we can get an insurance premium from July til the end of the year, approx 5 months, but it would be over $300 per month. My dad was about to hand over the credit card over the phone right away but I told him not to. My mom recently lost her job and I'm still unemployed and they're having enough trouble paying bills as it is, the last thing I wanted was to put more burden on them.

I really didn't wanna be working around the time of this journey because it doesn't look good to request a vacay into a new job, and usually you never get the amount of time you really need and are forced to suck it up. But I guess with this wonderful new change I have no choice but to dive in and hope my manager will understand when the time comes. So I'm ganna go ahead and apply for some jobs again and hope I get something. I put this fate in Gods hands....

On the plus side, I started convincing myself I'll have to suffer with this for the rest of my life and as a result I've been worrying about it less. The way you think can really change the way you see things. On Mother's Day, I made a matching bracelet and earrings set for my mom and the bracelet had 3 picture frames: 1 had both of my brothers, another my dad, and the third was a picture of me. It took me 9 shots to decide on one I liked! I can't wait for the day I'll finally be satisfied with just one.

Also, I found out a good friend of mine got braces a few months ago. Looking at her pictures I really hadn't noticed because she got clear brackets so I had to do a double take. They look really good! Her teeth looked perfectly straight to me though but people told me the same about mine and my braces certainly changed my mind. I guess we see ourselves a little differently from how others see us because we only have to look at ourselves in the mirror constantly and not at others' faces. Seeing her with braces kinda makes me miss having them...and I wish I were given the option of having clear brackets then too lol

I hope I'll get to update this blog with good news in the coming weeks :-/...

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Braceface is temporary

I really don't know why so many people whine about getting braces. I mean, I understand the gist of it: You don't want to have metal in your mouth for 2 years, they're unattractive, they're uncomfortable, they're painful, etc. I had them when I was 16 so I felt the same way prior to getting them.

But people need to see the bigger picture here: These discomforts will only last a couple of years! Once you get them off the results are SO worth it and they'll last a lifetime! I'm actually really glad I got braces when I did and if I had to get them again I wouldn't even hesitate.

A former friend of mine is such a pessimist. She just can't weight the good and the bad. The bad is literally ALL she focuses on. It's pretty discouraging to deal with someone like that constantly so I'm glad I don't have to anymore. Her teeth were pretty straight until her wisdom teeth came in and crowded them. She suffered pain from them for years. By the time she was able to get just 2 of them removed they had already caused a lot of damage. Her teeth are no longer perfectly straight and she hopes no dentist tells her she has to get braces. She's actually hoping her teeth will realign on their own. As much as we'd all love that, unfortunately it doesn't work that way. I tried to tell her all the great benefits of having braces but like I said before, the bad is the only things she can focus on so no amount of bright sides or convincing will work.

So many jaw surgery blogs I've read, the person had to get braces for the second time and while they dread the discomfort they're certainly not opposing it. Wonder why. My teeth weren't really very crooked when I got braces, but when I got them off I noticed quite a difference and was very glad  I went through this.

My advice to anyone getting braces is that I know how you feel about them. Believe me, I went through it. Try not to focus too much on the discomfort or how you'll look, because after a few weeks adjustment you'll barely even notice they're there. You'll get used to them and so will everyone around you. After a while they tend to blend in with everything else on your face. (If you're a girl, I read a study in a magazine when I had them that some boys even find them attractive and want to kiss a girl with braces ;). Time flies so 2 years will go by quicker than you think. Think about how you'll look and feel when you finally get them off. How straight your teeth will be. Your beautiful smile of pearly whites. The perfect bite. When you look back you'll see braces as one of the greatest investments you've ever made. I promise you it'll be worth it :)





Monday, April 21, 2014

I love how in so many Orthognathic blogs I've read, the blogger loves their results so much they decide to give themselves a total makeover. It's so exciting because before the surgery we all have high insecurities and very little confidence and it all stems from how we look when we see ourselves in the mirror and all the pain we have to endure from our jaws. That post op makeover is something every jaw surgery blogger is very well deserved and earned. I love seeing everyone's before and after. Not just their post op after but their new do, new face, new smile, newly found confidence afters too. It definitely gives hope and I can't wait to someday join everyone in that other side.

For the longest time, I've wanted to go crazy with my hair. Fill it with awesome colors and do my makeup so ecstatic that I actually have fun with it. But I never enjoy putting on makeup. All I ever really wear is cover up and lip gloss. If I didn't have acne scarring then lip balm would be the only thing parading on my face. On the rare times I actually put on pretty makeup, all I could focus on was my insecurities. They were so prominent to me I couldn't notice anything else. I don't care how any people tell me I'm pretty or am worrying for nothing because they don't have these things to deal with on a daily basis to understand how I feel. All these lovely bloggers have given me SO much hope that I won't be suffering forever. I can't wait til the day my post op arrives and I finally love what I see with and without makeup. One things for certain, I'm going crazy with my hair to match my confidence haha

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Patience is a virtue. I'll just keep telling myself that...

I suppose with good news, bad news must follow? That seems to be a trend in this world. I expect it with anything.

Turns out none -- literally, NONE! -- of the surgeons on the list my ortho gave me accept my insurance! I really had my heart set out on the one I chose. I hate having to settle for second best...or third best...or etc. I ended up going through the insurance plan my dad took out to figure out which surgeons I can have. There were only 4 on the list, 3 which are actually in this city. I researched them all just like I had the previous list, and made a decision. I'm not sure if I can do that or not, but a surgeon is a surgeon. However, money is not money when you don't have any! Before I did this I asked my first choice how much the consultation would be without insurance. I don't know why I was so surprised with this being for surgery and all lol $395 for a consultation, $1,045 for a consultation and x-rays if they have to take any. Chump change, right? I have it growing in my backyard...

Anyways, I went over to make an appointment in person with the new surgeon I chose because on the phone all that insurance info and being put on hold back and forth, getting my info, verification, and blah blah blah gets exhausting! The staff was really nice and they accepted my referral from my ortho. They're ganna contact them to have the x-rays sent over. I almost had a heart attack when they told me the closest day they had was May 20! Not because it's 4 weeks away but because we had received a letter a few weeks ago from my dad's dental insurance saying after 5/31 I would exceed the age to be on his insurance -- depending on the plan, and I would need to get an individual one or something. I booked the appointment regardless.

I came home to reread the letter and remembered the lady telling me they would use the medical insurance for this type of procedure, not dental. PHEW! I wanted to cry. I'll be able to go after all.

Now I just gatta wait 4 more weeks. Not like I've been waiting years for this or anything...



Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Metamorphosis

I really didn't wanna put pics of myself on this blog because I feel like crying when I look at them, but I guess it would defeat the purpose of documenting a journey to help others if I don't post before and after pics. So here goes nothing...

I found some pics of myself from when I was a kid. I don't know my exact age in them but I've gatta be 7- since that's the age I had the collision.


The second image is cropped and zoomed so you can see me better. Nothing wrong with either of them. And then in this picture you can see a scar right in between my eyes on the top bridge of the nose from where I got 8 stitches the night of the collision. 


I still have that scar btw. It never fully faded. This pic is from third grade, I believe. So it must've been about a year to a year and a half later. You can see where my nasal bridge started to widen a bit.

Some fun pics with lovely coworkers. I absolutely hate my smile and I rarely smile in pictures. You can see my top teeth sorta slant forward in the pic and you can also see where my nasal bridge expands -_- Even when I don't smile you can see the problem with my bridge and the permanent swelling from the cold sore on my bottom lip >.<


This is from Comic Con last year. I got to meet Chad Coleman so I was too excited NOT to smile. Blehh!


When shit gets clearer...can you see the lip swelling? I'm used to sucking it in at times. Most people gatta do that with their bodies, I gatta do that with my face! I'm hoping that ritual can end at some point in my life...


Don't mind me when I'm playing with my phone's camera. At the right time I can look halfway decent...


When there's no lighting I look halfway normal.


Monday, April 14, 2014

Facial Trauma

I've never really thought about this. As long as I've known, the only type of nasal surgery there was was Rhinoplasty. I have heard of cases where people would get surgery to fix birth defects (like a cleft lip) or anything life threatening, even surgery to correct deformities after tragic incidents like car accidents or sports injuries and stuff. But the latter usually happens right after the incident. These fractures get corrected fast because since they're physical they become obvious early on.

While checking out the list of surgeons my ortho gave me, it appears quite a few of them perform procedures for facial trauma. And I thought about this...this is what I would need instead of Rhinoplasty. I'm not getting my nose corrected because I don't like how it looks or to make it look better than what "god gave me", I'm getting it corrected because it changed after a collision that occurred when I was a kid. An accident that caused me health problems day in and day out. But the problem didn't become obvious til my teens, so until then I had no idea it was broken. When my nose would run or I'd have difficulty breathing, I though I had asthma or something. I was often prescribed nasal medicines that would only work temporarily. People were always asking me if I'm sick because I'd have to wipe my nose all the time because it was constantly running. And for the past 3 years, my nasal bridge would start hurting. I mean HURTING. I would have to lie down or take pain pills. I thought it might've been because of the braces or the retainers afterthefact, my teeth getting accustomed to their new position or shifting when I got too lazy to wear them, but the pain I'd encounter when I wore braces or retainers would be in my teeth and slowly effect the rest of my head. This pain only partook in my nose, the bridge at that, ONLY. When I place my fingers on it it feels out of place and I can feel where the bridge expands and doesn't meet the tip. It doesn't correlate. My nasal passages are also much wider.

I looked at pictures of myself from before the accident and all throughout the years, as well as pictures of my brothers. Their nose looked pretty much the same; mine expanded overtime. It became so obvious in pictures. I'd have to model my nose a certain way or "suck it in" to make it less noticeable. And when that wasn't possible I just deleted the pic coz I couldn't bare to look at it.

It took me a while to go through the list of surgeons because I literally looked them all up. I like being well-informed, especially with something this serious and risky. I definitely can't afford to with someone who wasn't qualified. But I'm glad I did. I found out one of the surgeons apparently has a history of malpractice in another state and had some doctor friends back him up so he can get away with it. That is definitely someone I do not want working on me lol I finally made a decision and chose a surgeon that also performs corrections to facial trauma. I got so excited when I read though his website and found out that with most cases he can also perform surgeries on the same day as the consultation. I always thought I'd be having to wait a really long time before getting these surgeries because every blog I read they have to wait quite a while, but I don't have braces anymore so maybe I wont have to go through that. I can only hope. Anywho, I'm just really excited and nervous altogether and after suffering for so long I just want to get this over with! lol

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Orthodontist appointment

I went to my Orthodontist appt today and I felt like a kid with braces again lol He took a look at my teeth and said the small gap was no problem and he was surprised my retainers still fit so well after 8 years. He gave me some "C" elastics to place in my front teeth to close the gap and adjusted my retainers to make them tighter. I have to wear them every night now and he'll check them again next month.

He also went over my optional oral surgery. He had explained to me I had a mandibular asymmetry which is where my midlines don't align and my surgery would've been to have my bottom jaw realigned.


He didn't mention my top jaw at all but I also didn't get a chance to ask. I think I'll write up a list of questions for him for next time so I don't forget. He did give me a referral for an oral surgeon and a list of surgeons to chose from. I think I'll ask him about my top jaw in the next appt or when I speak to the surgeon.

These are some pics of my bite I took last year. My teeth look the same now as they do here. You can see that my midline asymmetry is off and my front teeth slant forward a little. I think that bothers me a little more than the mandibular asymmetry.


He told me some of the headaches I've had and jaw pains could be a cause of TMJ. Any kind of misalignment in the skeletal structure is going to cause problems to how you perform, even if it's the slightest bit. What bothers me most isn't the headaches or the clicking but the speech problems and my profile.

In this diagram you can see examples of jaw misalignments. A is a regular aligned jaw and B is what I have.


You can see how much of a difference it makes. C is an overbite and D is an underbite.