Monday, October 6, 2008

Broken Appliance

I have so many things to blog about: soccer, Florida, etc. but today I'll blog about our broken appliance. Not just any appliance, but a DENTAL APPLIANCE. A dental appliance is a metal structure that fits into one's mouth (in this case, my oldest daughter's mouth) in order to expand the jaw to accommodate future teeth. A dental appliance costs as much as, or in some cases, more than, a kitchen appliance.

My daughter has been wearing her appliances (yes, she has two, one on the upper jaw and another on the lower) since July. Last week she received delivery of her third appliance, which is Head Gear. Her head gear sort of clips into her upper expander and then attaches around her head while she sleeps. The purpose of this appliance is to correct her overbite.

The first night with the appliance seemed to go ok, just a little bit of discomfort. Friday night, however, was another story. I was going out for the evening so I showed my husband how to install the Head Gear. He practiced and all seemed well so I left it in his capable hands.

A couple of hours later my daughter called me and told me that her mouth was really hurting. I told her it was probably time to go to bed, rest her mouth, etc. So she did. When I came home later, she was asleep and everything seemed fine. Until 3am. She came into our room crying, saying her mouth REALLY hurt. Then she said there was metal sticking out of her mouth. I tried to get a good look but it was dark so I used my hand to feel instead . . . and I could feel that the head gear had come loose and was sticking out of her mouth. So I unhooked the head gear and told her it was ok to take it out. Except when she took it out, the whole upper expander came out too!

I have no idea what happened to precipitate this is. I am blaming my husband. All was fine until he started messing with the expander/head gear. We have an emergency visit to the orthodontist this afternoon to replace the expander. She was scheduled to have the expander removed in March -- the upper jaw has expanded enough and was in the process of being "stabilized". I have a feel it will no longer be stable and wonder if we will have to go back to expanding again?

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