Monday, 1 April 2013

24 weeks (6 months) post-op and an appointment update

I can't believe it has been half a year since my surgery!  Crazy!  Although at the same time it kind of feels like a lifetime ago... it's just the braces that remind me it wasn't!

Generally things are all good jaw-wise.  Still sooooo happy with how I look.  I don't like to sound big-headed, but the photos I put on here don't really do my new face justice, and I'm not saying I'm now the most gorgeous person it the world, but when I look in the mirror there is nothing I'm unhappy with.  Of course I'm not perfect, but to me, there is nothing there that I'm not content with, and that's exactly how I wanted to be.  I think before I had this surgery, people thought that I was striving for perfection, and that I wanted to be stunningly beautiful when I came out of it.  Of course, that would have been nice, but all I wanted was to feel content with the structure of my face, and although it probably still doesn't seem like a big change to most people who know me, to me it has made a world of difference.  I always said that this was about how I saw myself, not about how other people saw me, and that's so true.  If somebody said I don't really look much different or much better, it doesn't really matter, because to me I do.

The only slight concern I have is about how wide I can open my mouth.  It's still only about two fingers.  The other things is, that when I have my mouth open for a long time, like when I'm cleaning my teeth, I sometimes find it hard to close my mouth without having a sharp pinching feeling in my left TMJ.  It's not agonising or anything, but I sometimes have to stand over the sink with toothpaste dripping out my mouth while I slowly try and close it.  I've come to the conclusion that part of the reason for this is that I'm still subconsciously trying to push my bottom jaw forward a bit when I clean my teeth, because that's what I always used to do.  So now I just try and relax my jaw a bit more when I brush, and that seems to have helped a bit.

I went to see my ortho a couple of weeks ago.  She took three of my brackets off and replaced them in a slightly different position, but oh my God it bloody hurt!!!  The pain only lasts for a split second, but I think because I still think of my jaw as fragile, I have this irrational fear that she's going to pull the bracket and my whole jaw will come off with it!  I don't know how I'm going to cope when I have to have them all taken off!

Anyway, she moved some brackets, and thank God, she changed my archwire, so I don't have so many surgical hooks left any more.  The ones in the middle have gone, so my mouth is looking a lot more clear of metal.  I also don't have to wear my bands at all any more!  Yay!  

So the plan now is... I've got an appointment on 2nd May, then the one after that will be on 3rd June, and at that appointment she will get the more senior ortho man to come in and see whether I can have my braces taken off, and if he says yes, then they will come off at the next appointment, which hasn't been booked yet, but is likely to be in July.  So, overall, the whole thing has taken a lot longer than I expected, but it's only another 3 or 4 months I suppose.  I bloody hope he says I can have them taken off then, otherwise I think I might cry right there and then in front of them!!

The other thing my ortho kept talking about was the poor quality of my two front teeth.  Since I was a kid I've had problems with the enamel not forming on my teeth.  The result now is that my two front teeth have a rough, mottled front surface, and the bottoms are worn away.  My ortho was saying about me getting some veneers put over them once my braces are off, but as far as I'm concerned, this really does seem purely cosmetic.  So I will enquire about it next time I'm at the dentist, but I'll have to see how bad they look once the braces are off, and whether they look bad enough for me to justify spending hundreds of pounds on it!

Talking of dentists, I went to my dentist the same day, and as I suspected, I need three fillings.  However, because I still can't open my mouth very wide, the dentist said she'll have to do the fillings in three separate appointments because it will take her so long to do each one with my mouth only opening a small way!  Oh what fun!

Here are my 6 month pictures, I just took them myself and I'm not wearing much make-up so they're not great, but hopefully they give you some idea of my progress...  As I always say, things look a lot more wonky in pictures than they do in real life.


  1. Well you look great!! Like you said who cares what people think anyway. I am now 7wks post op tomorrow. Can you tell me what numbness did you have at first and when did you regain all of your feeling back? Also in what month would you say that the swelling is 100% gone out of your face? Im so confused because my dr said that I'm not swollen but when others look at me they think I look a little swollen still smh. Thanks in advance.

    1. Hi Kristie! Thanks! To be honest I was very lucky with numbness right from the beginning, and only had numbness in my gums. I think most of that feeling has come back now but to be honest I doesn't really bother me anyway. I still wouldn't say all my swelling has gone down. I still get a puffy left cheek, especially first thing in the morning. My Dr said it could take up to 2 years for all the swelling to go down.

  2. Ahhh you are looking so good missy! beautiful! :)

  3. Hi Sarah. I've been reading your journey for a while and it's really inspiring me through my own journey. I think you're the only jaw surgery blogger who's said you're not doing this for other people but for yourself, for your confidence. I'm really glad to see that coz that's exactly how I feel. Everytime people ask me why I wanna do this they say "you don't need it, you look fine!" and no amount of times I try to convince them that I'm doing this for my own confidence and performance, not just to look better, it just never seems justice. It's not vanity at all the way people think. I have problems with my bite and speech and sure I'd also like to improve my profile because I hate it so much, but what people who lack empathy fail to see is that the problems with a deformed jaw go much deeper than looks, and I have to look at myself everyday in the mirror, not them. So MY view of myself is the only one that really matters. If we're not happy with ourselves we can't be happy with others. But people with perfect faces and bites and features just can't understand that.

    I'm really impressed with your results. Such an amazing difference! I can't wait to get to that point. The only thing I'm concerned with is people thinking of it as cosmetic. With Hollywood all plastic surgery crazy, unless you're dying people won't think your surgeries are necessary. Of course, that opinion would change if they were the ones getting it (but with people lacking so much empathy nowadays we're forced to deal with their ignorance)

    Anyway, I just started my journey. Like you, I had the option of having it done with the first round of braces but refused the surgery so here I am giving it a try 8 years later. Your blog and others' have really helped me to prepare myself mentally and emotionally for this ride so I'm ready to dive right in lol If you wanna check out my blog it's Thanks again! :)