Monday, July 2, 2012

Teeth

So remember how a few months ago I had to have oral surgery?  If not, you can read about it here.  Anyway, I have had a lot more going on with my mouth since then.  We knew that I wouldn't have teeth in my mouth for about 6-8 months because it takes that long for new bone to grow and for the gums to be receptive enough for the new teeth.  I have been going back about once a month to my oral surgeon for him to check on my gums and make sure they are healing okay.  

He has thought the tissue is healing really well, but he didn't really like the shape that it was growing in.  All I had for "place holders" for my teeth was the mouth guard that my dentist made me.  While it was good, it wasn't pushing on my gums, so my gums didn't "know" what shape to take.  So, my oral surgeon generously said he would make me some temporaries that would actually go on the posts and push against my gums so that they would start to take the right shape.  The first time I went to him it took about 3 hours to mold and shape the temporaries to fit in my mouth.  We finally got the basic shape, but there was still the polishing to do.  I went back two days later for another hour and a half for him to polish them and get them just right.  The next morning, I woke up, stood up, and one of them fell right out of my mouth!  Turns out we didn't have the contact just right and I was clenching and grinding on it all night.  I had to go back again that day for about an hour so he could shave it down so that I wouldn't hit it when I bit down.  Its been two weeks since then and so far, so good.  They haven't fallen out again.  
There are a few things that bother me about them, but I'm so glad to look more "normal" that it doesn't really matter.  There is a rubber sleeve inside the tooth around the posts.  This allows it to give a little bit if I were to accidentally bite down on them.  Because there is that rubber in there, the teeth wiggle quite a bit and it kinda drives me crazy :) I'm getting more and more used to the wiggle though and I'm not always telling Rick that they are going to fall out any second (I think he is so sick of me saying, "Oh no!  I think they are about to fall out!" :-P) They are also not the exact color of my real teeth, they are a little yellow compared to the rest of my mouth.  I also am pretty nervous to eat very many things.  Anything that I have to bite with my front teeth, I try to avoid.  I'm not supposed to bite down on the temporaries at all.  So, if there is anything like a sandwich, or a taco, etc, I usually cut it up into small pieces and stick them in the back of my mouth where I can chew.  It was definitely a process trying to get these temporaries just right but I am so grateful to have them in!  It looks like I won't be able to get my "real" teeth until January so I hope these bad boys last a while!

This is April, right before my surgery.  The last time I had my "real" teeth in my mouth.
Sidenote:  between the first and second picture I lost 10 pounds with all this mouth work!

What I looked like without my mouthguard in.  I'm kind of embarrassed to post these, but I  figure most of my friends out here have seen me without my guard in :)  I couldn't eat with it in, so anytime we were doing something social, I would have to take it out to eat.

I have posts in the holes that my new teeth will eventually screw on to.   Funny story:  One day I had all three kids laying down on the bed and I was standing above them tickling them all, Daci was laughing and giggling and then all of a sudden stopped, gave me this horrified look, stood up, put her face in my mouth and said, "Mom!  What is that in your holes!?" She was more than a little freaked out by the posts :)

This is my mouthguard.  I only wore it at night and when I went out.  When I was just home during the day I wouldn't wear it so Daci and Rick saw "hill billy Kori" a lot :)


What it looked like with my mouthguard in.  The teeth in the tray weren't the same color as my regular teeth either.

My lip would get caught on the top of it when I smiled and you could still see the posts.  Can you see how there is no way for the tissue to know which shape to take?  There is nothing pushing against the gums.


This is after the first day that I had the temporaries put in. They still weren't quite the right shape and I was hitting them a bunch when I bit down.  I forgot to take pics after I had them fixed to the right shape.
So basically I have some temporary teeth in my mouth to help the tissue grow.  I have already seen a big difference in my gums!  When he first put the temps in I had big gaps between my teeth, now I have gum tissue growing down between them like they should be.  I still can't believe how amazing our world is.  I keep thinking about if I were a pioneer with these teeth problems.  I more than likely would have died from the infection, and if not, they would have just ripped my teeth out and I would have looked like that forever.  So grateful for modern medicine!!

8 comments:

Karen Pedersen said...

Your 'new' teeth look awesome. I'm so glad you got them to take the place of the mouth guard until January!

Kelli Haub said...

You look beautiful... with our without your teeth ;)

Liz Smith said...

even without teeth you're gorgeous. not fair! lol.

i'm glad you got some temporaries in though. hopefully these next few months go by quickly until you get your new permanent ones.

marie said...

You look great Kori! Bless you for all that you have had to go through! Especially while having twins!

Melissa M. McCoy said...

Thank goodness for modern medicine! I seriously feel for you, anything with teeth freaks me out. I love that you posted your hill billy pics! Hope everything else goes smoothly!

PAUL + ALICIA+CAPRI said...

That is a long process! I had to do that in one of my back teeth and it was weird not having a tooth forever! im glad you got your temps in, i am so grateful for modern medicine too

Pam Klassen said...

Kori I have to say that while I don't envy you your dental issues I am impressed that you're sharing it all. Everyone thinks a pretty girl 'has it all' and sharing this just proves that it isn't always so. I hope the next months whiz by for you and your 'new permanent teeth' are in before you know it. Modern dentistry certainly beats a shot of whiskey and rusty pliers.....lol

Bettye Primm said...

That was quite a long process before you could have new real teeth again. I know your long wait would be worth it. Anyway, you said you will get your new teeth by January, but you haven’t posted any updates about it. How was it? I’d love to know if you already have your new teeth on. I’m pretty sure it’s going to look fabulous!

>Bettye Primm