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Friday, July 10, 2015

My Braces Story.

Pierre Fauchard, the man who invented modern orthodontics and made all of this possible. A dream come true. It was stated in Wikipedia that in ancient times, people use Catgut, a type of cord made from the natural fiber of animals' intestines. Yerr. Anyways, thankful for this inventor :)

Never thought that this experience could be a life-changing tool. 


Growing up, I have always dislike how my teeth are. I wouldn't say it affected my self-confidence greatly because outlook isn't the most important thing for me. It does affect in some ways, and I knew (back then) that one day I will want to wear braces to make them straight again. 


I said make them straight again because when I looked back at my baby photos, my teeth were so straight okay. Hah. I know cannot see like that because all those are milk teeth. I have no idea why all the new teeth come out senget. So sad. 


I don't smile a lot last time because I hated how my teeth is. So senget and not presentable. Yes, people always say must accept who you already are BUT THERE'S ALWAYS ROOM FOR IMPROVEMENT RIGHT. It's not like this is plastic surgery or something. I AM NOT CHANGING MY FACE. Hah. 


So in order for me to smile comfortably and loving all the photos with my face on them, I decided that this is a must-happen. Also, it's so difficult to brush my teeth because so many hidden tooth! 


I wanted to put on braces many years ago but my parents could not afford to pay for it. So, the thought of it was kept at the back of my head. Not forgotten of course. I also got no money what so what to do.


Then, when I was in college, I applied for PTPTN loan. My course at that time was RM40,000 for 3 years degree at KDU College Penang so I obviously applied for a full loan so my parents don't have to fork out any money for my studies. Yes, I'm such a good girl :)


The day came when the results came back to see if my loan application has been approved and the total amount that I will get for this course. I could not believe my eyes when I saw the amount loaned to me!


RM48,000!


That's extra RM8,000 okay for me to spend. I got excited lah but I know this one is just a loan okay. Must pay back after my degree. Still! I was happy because now I have the cash to go do braces.


And I did.


Ohh, turns out I didn't have to pay the entire RM48,000 because it was turned into a full scholarship. To be honest, till today I stand amazed because I have no idea how I could have gotten that first class honours and this 'scholarship'! My friend who also got first class honors had to pay back a few thousands of the PTPTN and I didn't even pay a single cent. How great is my God hah!


Back to this! 


On November 24, 2011, I walked into Looi Orthodontic Clinic for the first time and I tell you, my heart was beating so fast you probably could hear/see/feel it. I don't know if it was fear of dentist or excitement or just really mixed of all kinds of emotions.


I remembered that on my first 2 visits, I made a total payment of RM2,000. I went through x-rays, lots of explanation, take photos, more explanations and stuff.


I was praying so hard that I didn't need to extract any tooth. Turns out need to extract 2 on the top. Still okay I guess. 


Then, I went back on the 29 February 2012 and then it all begins. It was crazy painful okay. I'm not gonna lie or sugar coat it. It's painful. 


Your upper teeth touch the lower part, pain. 

You talk and your tongue touches any teeth, pain. 
Your straw touches the teeth, pain.
You don't do anything, pain.

Basically, it will be painful whenever you touch your teeth, by accident or not. For me, the pain lasted for one whole week. So painful sometimes I just skipped meal because eating was just difficult. In that one week, I ate a lot of porridge and liquid stuff. Koay teow thng also my mom had to cut the koay teow for me. So, all I did the entire 7 days was swallow. 


To make sure I don't die of hunger, I endure and just swallow. What is eat? Hah.


After that, it gets easier but still painful, especially every time it gets tightened. One thing though, it does get easier after every tightening. It's still very much painful but somehow it's more bearable.




I constantly remind myself that it was gonna be worth it. This was by far, the longest 'project' and I must say that it was worth all the pain, tears, blood and hunger. Heh. WORTH IT PEOPLE DO YOU HEAR ME?


I have a lot of people asking me if they should do it. I will always answer them yes.


I feel that if it has never crossed your mind to do braces, means you are not bothered by how your teeth looks and you're okay with it so obviously no need to do la right. But if you actually keep thinking about it, to do or not all, then you just should, because in the first place, what made you wanna do it and then doubt whether you should do it?


Means somewhere inside of you, you actually want to change how your teeth looks ma right. That's my reasoning lah.


 It's like I saw a pair of shoes that I really like and it's really expensive and I don't think I want to spend that amount of money on a pair, I will just let the thought go. But if even after months and I still think about it, I sure will save money to get it because if i don't, I will keep thinking about it and regretting not buying it. 


For me, it's the same. If you really want to wear braces, I'd say GO FOR IT. No need think already.


I think the most important part of a face is the teeth. At least for me lah.


So, after like SEVENTEEN VISITS in the span of four years, they finally said those words!


"Next visit can remove braces already!"


HAPPIEST DAY OF MY LIFE! HAPPIER THAN WHEN I GO TO UNIVERSAL STUDIOS OSAKA OKAY!


Who doesn't like freedom right? I know I definitely do. No need for my tongue to auto-korek (HAHA!) all the hidden leftover foods behind the metals inside. So syiok. 


So, here are some photos from last time, few years back. 




"Whatttt? ARE YOU SERIOUS AHH? HOW DID I FALL FOR THIS FACE LAST TIME WEI?"


Koay said when he saw my before-braces photos. TERRIBLEE.


BEFORE.

 AFTER.


My freedom lasted for one and a half day only. I went back a day after my braces was removed to have them put retainer on. All this while I thought wearing a retainer cannot be worse than having to wear braces for 4 years right?


WRONG.


It's not as painful but it's the most uncomfortable thing to put inside a mouth okay. Don't need to mention about talking because you will sound like you are still learning how to pronounce your words. Words with S and F, forget it. Just give up. Just use the Malay term for the word. Either your saliva will come out or you will look like a fool. Both also not very fun. Heh.


It might sound like I'm angry but I'm not okay. Haha. I'm just really shocked at this retainer thing. I really thought the struggle is over. 


Turns out, it's still far. Bleh.


3 months of full-time retainer and 1 and half years of part-time retainer.


A retainer is basically a plastic/metal thing that is custom made according to your teeth to retain your adjusted teeth. No retainer is the same, like thumb print. I have seen so many people whom neglected the need to wear retainer now have crooked teeth again. That, I will not allow to happen on myself. 




THIS ONE REALLY NO PAIN NO GAIN OKAY. 

*tells self* It's gonna be worth it. It's gonna be worth it. 


Reasons:


I am loving my new look. 

I like to smile now.
I like that now I can show-off my teeth whenever I take photos, probably too much of showing. Haha. 
I like that my teeth is straighter than his now. 
I like how I look now compared to 4 years ago. I do. 
I like that brushing my teeth now is such a happy thing to do.
I like that there is no more hidden gaps for food to hide.

I seriously love how straight my teeth is now and I intend to keep it that way, so retainer it shall be.



Okay, you get it. You get how MUCH I REALLY LOVE IT. HAHA.

I think this chapter has been really challenging, both mentally and physically. Mentally because there are times when my moods will go down the hill and I will get upset for no apparent reason, just because I couldn't eat properly (eating is one of the things I love doing okay!) and enjoy a simple meal. Physically it was affecting me because when it was painful, I skipped proper meals and when it's not, I will eat like a mad person. 


Okay, actually physically not much la since I lose the weight and gain it back and lose again, like a cycle. Heh.


One of the best decision I have ever made on my own. NO REGRETS AT ALL.




:))))))))))


A friend sent a link that titles 13 THINGS ONLY MALAYSIANS WHO WEAR BRACES UNDERSTAND, It's all so true okay! So, I'm gonna choose some that I can really relate to and put them here!

1) ONLY YOU WILL UNDERSTAND WHAT YOU WENT THROUGH TO GET THE BRACES FIXED
This is crazily true. The mental strength and perseverance needed oh my goodness.

2) CHEWING GUM IS A NIGHTMARE. 
Scared this (points below) will happen.


3) YOU ARE ALWAYS PARANOID THAT THERE IS SOMETHING STUCK IN YOUR BRACES. 
If you have eaten meals with me, you sure can see my tongue always going through my braces to make sure no hidden food.

4) PEOPLE ALWAYS TELL YOU THAT IT'S GOING TO BE WORTH IT. Surprisingly, I don't get that a lot from people who wore them before. Hmm.

5) AND YESSSS, IT WAS WORTH IT! Err, if you read the whole first part, you'd know.

6) WHEN YOU GOT YOUR BRACES OFF, ONCE AGAIN YOU ALWAYS RUN YOUR TONGUE ALONG YOUR PERFECT TEETH AND THE FEELING IS PRICELESS. 
This one is soooo true I cannot. I kept doing it because it felt so good to feel the straightness! 

7) THEN COMES THE RETAINER. 
Umm, so far it's pure torture. I realized now I eat more often during the day because I just want to find reasons to take the retainer out. I really get people who stopped wearing them. I do. 

8) YOU ARE EXTREMELY NICE TO YOUR ORTHODONTICS BECAUSE THEY ARE DENTIST. HELLO! 
Yes, that is very true. I make sure I'm super nice to them. Everyone is afraid of dentist so to overcome that, let's be nice to them, and also the fact that they can 'accidentally' make you bleed okay. Heh.

9) YOU WILL WAKE UP WITH A STAINED PILLOW. 
You will be surprised with how much saliva leaked onto your pillow, especially after tightening. 

So, this is the 9 things that I can relate to very well. There are probably more but I just can't think of any yet. I added some which I think I can somehow relate. More next time :)

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