I am slowly learning that having braces is so much more than just brackets on teeth and a few wire changes. Now that I am nearing the end of my braces journey the fine-tuning begins.
Me: Soâ€¦howâ€™s it all going?
Dr Levinson: Not badâ€¦that upper tooth needs to move half a mm stillâ€¦.and I think we will do a bit of interproximal enamel reduction on your lower front 4 teeth.
Me: interproximal what?
Dr Levinson: Oh we will use a double diamond head drill bit and run it between your lower front teethâ€¦hereâ€¦hereâ€¦here and here to shave off a tiny slither on each tooth so that they will move back slightly and align correctly to your upper teeth which are just about where we want them.
Me: double diamond whatâ€¦shave off whatâ€¦
At that point I started shakingâ€¦remember my dental phobia? But read on my dears as this does have a happy ending. You see the procedure of â€˜interproximal enamel reductionâ€™ or more simply a recontour is quick, and painlessâ€¦the only discomfort is in the anxiety that I unnecessarily put myself through.
As I lay back in the chair, thinking of a whizzing drilling thing about to burst into my mouth anything that could have delayed the procedure didâ€¦the drill bit had to be located, the hi-speed drill was not working properly (a bit of fiddling and the problem located and fixed)â€¦I used this time to build up some version of what was about to occur as being panic inducing drilling so that by the time it was ready to go my knuckles where white and I was hyperventilating. I kid you not!
Dr Levinson gave me a â€˜painâ€™ signal of a finger liftâ€¦I was actually too panic stricken to use itâ€¦I just wanted the whole thing over.
But I can say honestly and with my hand on my heartâ€¦it did not hurt one bit, nor was it anymore uncomfortable than laying back in the chair with your mouth open for about 1.5 minutes in total.
It was finished up with a polish to smooth the edges which involved LOTS of water spraying everywhere, and some nice big blobs of fluoride packed in there with instructions not to eat for around 30 minutes.
Done! Is that the sniggering of my co-workers I hear behind my back?
Now really why was I behaving like such a baby? If only we could reshape our waistline in the same way!