The Daughter Chronicles

Monday, September 30, 2013

You know what's no fun? Orthodontia!

Norah has entered the brave new world of orthodontia, as her dentist recommended she go see an orthodontist before she hits puberty because the alignment of her jaw was way off. He also suggested we take her to an ENT because her septum isn't as straight as it could be, but we haven't done that yet. One thing at a time!

So we took her to the orthodontist, and they pointed out that her jaw needs to be widened. The middle of her top row of teeth and the middle of her bottom row are way off, and her teeth aren't coming in straight because there's not enough room for them. Before they go with braces, they wanted to put the widener in. This is the thing that you have to crank twice a day to push the device farther apart. Fun! Norah got it in a few weeks ago, and it's already having a noticeable effect. She didn't mind it too much, but it does hurt occasionally. Plus, she's eating even less than her usual tiny amount because it's a pain to chew stuff and a lot of it gets stuck in the device. She's maintaining her weight for now, but we're hoping she starts eating more because this thing is going to be on for a while. The doctor said it should be on between 3-6 months, depending on the effect. Man, I hope it's on the short end of that spectrum.

She's adapted to it pretty well - she has a raspy lisp when she talks, but it doesn't bother her too much, and she was slurping a lot in the first few days because it was causing her to drool a little. But she adjusted to that, and she does it rarely now. She still has some trouble talking, but she's getting better at that, too. It's no big deal - I think her teacher talked about it in class so that no one picked on her and so that individual people didn't ask the same question over and over, so school has been fine. She sleeps fine, too, so that's cool.

We kind of knew she'd need some form of orthodontia even years ago - we could see it coming, and both Krys and I needed adjustments, so it's probably genetic in some way. Mia could stand it, too, but the dentist said it would be more cosmetic with her, and she doesn't care about that, so we'll probably skip it. We're just hoping this fixes the problem and she won't need braces. Now those are annoying.

The first picture is the device in her mouth. The second is her school picture, which was taken the week before she got it installed. The third picture is from this morning. Note the difference in the diastema as the device does its work!

Sorry about that last picture. Norah was being goofy and just leaned back on the sofa. She wouldn't stand up. That's just how she rolls!

I'll have to post some "after" pictures when she gets it off. That should be interesting.


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