Day 47 – License to Chew

Hi friends!

I apologise sincerely for the lack of updates but I’m proud to say that it’s because I have finally assimilated back into normal life! I just had an appointment with my orthodontist today and she finally removed my surgical hooks, so now I am no longer using elastic bands! Hurrah!

Aching/Pain

I have experienced zero pain in these past few weeks (though if you read my previous posts you’d notice that pain has never really been a problem since the first excruciating morning was over.) I mentioned in my previous post that I sometimes had this migraine-like headache at my temples. I haven’t experienced that at all, except after a very busy night last week. So aching and pain is no longer a problem! 🙂

Numbness

Numbness has also not really been a problem at all for my entire post-op journey, and for that I am immensely thankful. Although I noticed recently that my upper gum has some numbness, which is completely understandable since that is the incision site where they cut me open. I didn’t notice this numbness until Week 5, which probably shows how little it bothers me.

Eating

 

I CAN FINALLY CHEW!!!!!

and let me just tell you IT IS GLORIOUS. My surgeon gave me the go-ahead to start chewing in week 6, but I’ll be honest to you guys… I actually started chewing at the beginning of week 5. And no, my jaw didn’t fall off. Still not going to tell my surgeon though.

The first meal I chewed, my molars were kinda gnashing together but food wasn’t really getting chewed properly. Sort of like I didn’t have the energy to chew properly. My front teeth, however, did a terrific job in tearing food from the very start. Do you know how amazing it is to finally be able to use my front teeth??? Eating is so… effortless when your front teeth are actually able to perform their normal function.

Somewhere out there (in my mother’s phone) there is an embarrassing video of me (taken without consent) chewing for the first time post-op. In it, I break noodles with my front teeth, then emit an elated squeak of joy. I made my mother promise not to send that video around, because I was so mortifyingly happy about being able to perform such a simple action.

But really, it’s glorious. Eating is amazing. I can eat everything except super hard stuff like nuts, but I don’t like nuts anyway. I haven’t tried sliced apples and I am a bit hesitant because they are really hard. I am so happy.

Swelling

I have a little swelling left around my cheek area. I know because I can’t suck in my cheeks and the inside of my mouth feels kinda constricted for space. Most people can’t tell, however.

Here are some pictures taken today:

Photo on 2014-02-26 at 01.03 #2

Photo on 2014-02-26 at 01.08

Photo on 2014-02-26 at 01.13

Photo on 2014-02-18 at 23.23

I CAN ACTUALLY SMILE QUITE NATURALLY NOW

 Before After

Pretty cool, isn’t it?!?!

Recovery

I have full energy back and my life feels normal again. Sometimes I forget I actually had the surgery only six weeks ago, until I try to stuff something into my mouth and realise that I can’t open my mouth big enough to it it in. So that is still a problem – I can only open my mouth a bit more than one finger width, and the normal is three fingers. In the morning my mouth can only snugly fit one finger. Progress is slower on this front, and all I can do is keep on talking and eating and stretching my stiff muscles until I regain full range of motion. Of course, this will take a while. The moment I accomplish the elusive 3 finger width, however, I can safely say that my life is completely back to normal.

Also, my orthodontist estimates that I only have to have braces on for another 2-4 months. I can’t wait to get all the metal off!

6 thoughts on “Day 47 – License to Chew

  1. Your before and after pictures of your teeth are a lot like mine. It is pretty great to be able to bite off things! Congrats on doing so well.
    I never thought about being able to suck my cheeks in! I tried just now and can’t do it. That’s pretty funny. I didn’t think I had much swelling left. Of course I still can’t fully control my upper lip, but I think that’s because of the numbness.

  2. Awesome! The results are great and you’re recovering very fast! When you say that you can’t open your mouth fully, is it because it is still too painful to do so or is it physically impossible because muscles are too stiff?

    • Both, actually! The muscles at the back of my mouth feel really stiff, and if I try to force my mouth open beyond the comfortable limit my jaw joints really hurt

  3. You look AMAZING! This is a funny question. Did you know how wide ( how many ) fingers you could open your mouth before the surgery?

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