My natural teeth

7 Jun

For the first few weeks after my accident, and then again in the first several days after my chipped teeth were repaired, I’d often wonder what my teeth had looked like before the accident and lament that I’d never know. On this point, however, I was wrong.

When I got my braces off just short of eight years ago, my orthodontist made models of my teeth. These were to be used to shape the clear plastic retainers that I would have to wear regularly from then on. For most of the past eight years, the models have sat collecting dust in my old room in my parents’ house.

My old teeth

For me, the most striking thing about the models (which unfortunately my photograph doesn’t adequately show) is that they show that my right front tooth was actually slightly bigger than the left front tooth before the former was chipped in the accident. In the repaired version, the edge of my right front tooth (number 8 for the dental notation enthusiasts out there) slants so that the tooth approximately matches both of its neighbors in length where it meets them. In particular, the right front tooth is considerably smaller than its neighbor to the left, and it also looks weird.

The models also confirm that my bottom front teeth have moved a little bit. The two in the center now stick out slightly further than the ones to the left and right. This is something that I’ve suspected since my jaw was wired shut, when I detected a change in the way things felt to my tongue. I’m hoping that the movement is due to pressure applied by the wires in my mouth and that the movement is slight enough that my retainers will be able to nudge them back into place after I get the arch bars out.

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