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Thread: Can't Bite Down

  1. #1
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    Can't Bite Down

    I had my top braces put on Thursday. On the 16th I'm getting spacers and a week after that my mouth will be full of metal. The reason I'm even posting is because I'm crying nonstop and am tempted to just stop my treatment next appointment, flushing all that money and excitement down the drain.

    My orthodontist applied two horizontal bars (I'm sorry, don't know the official name, it's like a little shelf) to the back of my front teeth to prevent me from chomping off my bottom braces when they go in. This means none of my teeth touch. Only two bottom teeth can scrap against this disgusting metal. That's it. I can't chew at all. The only way I can eat anything is if I mash it up with my cheeks but my cheeks can't do much because they're all ripped up and covered in canker sores (dental wax isn't helping much and I've always had terrible canker sores). This has nothing to do with the pain; my teeth don't even hurt. I just want to be able to bite down!

    I don't know how long I have to suffer like this. I assume until the braces can correct my bite, but that doesn't seem like something that will happen in a few weeks' time. Yet I don't see myself being able to live like this for months let alone years. My tongue doesn't even have anywhere to go because the shelf pokes it no matter where I rest it which is giving me insomnia. I'm in physical agony, mental exhaustion and I'm absolutely starving. I can only eat mashed potatoes for so long.

    Has anyone else had this problem?
    Last edited by Alice; 04-05-2009 at 03:21 AM.

  2. #2
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    Welcome to this forum Alice! :)

    Sorry to read that you're finding the beginning of your treatment so tough. Firstly try and sort your mouth sores. Wax will help, but you need to keep every bracket that is rubbing any part of your mouth and tongue well covered ... for at least 24 hours after you think your mouth is no longer sore. This may mean you'll need quite a bit of wax ... but your mouth will get better, and it's loads better for your mouth to tongue with wax covering the brackets, than to get ripped up again. Also you'd be best to apply some type of topical gel for mouth sores ... preferrably one that contains both a numbing agent and antiseptic. This will hopefully help your mouth to feel better and heal faster. I also recommend rinsing as often as you can throughout the day with warm salt water. Just put a small amount of salt (a pinch - probably less than 1/4 of a teaspoon) in a small amount of warm tap water. Swirl this round your mouth a few times, gargle and spit. This should help with soothing your mouth and also help it to heal. If you're prone to mouth sores, continue doing this salt water rinses once or twice a day after your mouth has healed, as this may help prevent them from coming back.

    Eating ... this can be tough when you have bumpers or 'stops' on your teeth, but you will get used to them. I realise this may sound totally 'it's not going to happen', at this time, but every patient I've seen who's needed 'stops' has found them annoying for a week or month, then they've adjusted. While they're annoying and you're not able to chew, there are heaps of soft food alternatives that you can eat. Check out your supermarket and enjoy this change in your diet. Make sure you add small amounts of semi soft foods to each meal, so that you can continue to try out your ability to 'chew' or mash food on the roof of your mouth, or between the 'stops' and some teeth. It's important that you work on chewing, as chewing is good for both your gums and tooth movement.

    It's great your teeth don't hurt ... and neither they should, as most orthodontic treatment doesn't require pain to work.

    Take extra care with your cheeks, tongue and eating, and hopefully very soon you'll be feeling much better. :thumb:
    After 5 years, 11 months and two days of stainless steel brackets ... my teeth now have upper and lower bonded, gold wire, retainers and removable clear retainers!

  3. #3
    If you're chronically prone to mouth ulcers, even before braces, you may want to explore possible reasons for that too. You may have some sort of insufficiency in your diet - for example, a deficiency of zinc, vitamin C, Vitamin B, or iron can make you more prone to cankers. Perhaps you could try adding a good multivitamin and mineral supplement daily to see if it helps. If it does not, you may want to approach your doctor to see if there is anything else amiss that makes you so prone to these sores.

    (Note: I am not a medical professional)
    I am not a dental professional.

    As it says on the main Bracesreview.com page, always consult a qualified orthodontist, dentist, or medical professional with questions you may have.

  4. #4
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    I was really hoping the answer wouldn't be "you'll figure it out." I know for a fact I won't be able to live like this. Something - no matter how small - has to give. I've seen those molar bumpers that are made of glue or something...that would be a huge step up from two pieces of metal constantly gashing my tongue open. They're nigh impossible to cover with wax because there's nothing to hold onto. I either have two sharp bars or a bulbous mountain of wax behind my teeth.

    I already do everything you've suggested for canker sores, but thank you.

    Quote Originally Posted by Zoso View Post
    If you're chronically prone to mouth ulcers, even before braces, you may want to explore possible reasons for that too.
    I had (have?) an iron deficiency but even when I was regularly taking iron pills there was no change. I bought SLS free toothpaste. I cut out a lot of foods that were thought to have triggered canker sores. I stopped drinking all forms of soda. I have a bajillion mouthwashes that do nothing. Lately I've been on my regular routine because nothing has made a difference. I have no health insurance right now (the braces were the last thing covered before I lost it), so I can't really ask my doctor. I pretty much need to take vitamins now since I'm not able to eat much of anything, so we'll see if that does anything I guess.

    But like I said, pain I can handle. It's not letting my teeth meet or tongue rest that's driving me insane. :(

  5. #5
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    Alice the next best thing for you to do, is call your orthodontist and talk to him. Explain how you're feeling and ask for advice. It is not uncommon for some people to feel that they won't be able to cope with their treatment, so please ask for help.

    My doctors think my mouth sores are hormonal, as they could find no reason for them and no treatment for them. I used to be deficient in iron, B12 and folate, but these defincies were sorted, with no improvement in the mouth sores. I had accepted that this was something I just had to learn to live with. When I had my first appointment with my ortho, I told him about the mouth sore problem and he suggested I begin warm salt water rinses that day ... six weeks out from starting my treatment, and I don't know why (neither do my doctors), I've not had a mouth sore since then. Really I don't care why ... I'm just happy something has finally worked for me.

    As your teeth move, chewing will become easier and eventually the 'stops' will be removed. But, please give your ortho a call and explain how desperate you're feeling and that you're considering halting your treatment.

    Good luck! :thumb:
    After 5 years, 11 months and two days of stainless steel brackets ... my teeth now have upper and lower bonded, gold wire, retainers and removable clear retainers!

  6. #6
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    Thank you. I'll do just that.

  7. #7
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    Good for you ... and please let us know how you get on!

    Here's to you feeling heaps better, very soon! :thumb:
    After 5 years, 11 months and two days of stainless steel brackets ... my teeth now have upper and lower bonded, gold wire, retainers and removable clear retainers!

  8. #8
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    Sorry you are having such a rough time....It took me about a month for my back teeth to meet up...I couldn't bite down either because my top teeth rested on my bottom brackets, and so..the same thing, I just had to kind of hang my jaw there...drove me crazy too. Things happen SO quick though, seriously...yes it was not fun but about a 4 to 6 weeks later, guess what? my bite changed, and now I could bite down again--big difference that made! The only thing is...I had to trade that discomfort with a more obvious overbite/jet? that looks worse....my teeth are crowded on top and bringing them all down has made them come out more, and will need to be pulled back with rubber bands. As much as I hate the toothy look I have, I am so glad to bite down again. I am over 3 months in and doing much much much better than I was in the beginning. I was miserable that week, and everyone told me it gets better....and I didn't believe them....but it really does...promise! oh, and yes, the eating it difficult, I just about used my tongue to chew haha, I just had to swallow what I could....I am eating normal now though, and eating most everything I could before.
    Candy--ceramic uppers/metal lowers--sentenced for 24 months!







  9. #9
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    That's awesome news. I have heard people who have been unable to chew for up to a year; I would lose my mind! There's so much space between my teeth right now that I can almost stick my tongue through them fully closed, so I doubt it will happen in a month, but if a few of my back teeth could meet up I'd feel a lot better.

    I woke up today with a new canker sore forming on my tongue from the god awful bite blocker digging into it all night (wax wouldn't stay on), so chewing with my tongue is now an even more miserable experience. I have an appointment for Thursday and just need to hang on until then.

  10. #10
    Oh poor Alice! I just had my bottom ones applied recently and can completely relate :(

    I don't have any advice - I'm just offering empathy and hoping you can make it until the appointment. Its a huge and time investment and I'd hate to see it all go down the drain so quickly. Have you noticed your teeth moving yet?
    RandomAnny.Com

    I had my upper braces on for 17 months, 1 week and 2 days.
    The bottoms were on for 13 months and 3 days

  11. #11
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    I wish! I don't notice or feel much at all in the actual tooth department. He used a really thin archwire to start me off so I'm probably not in as much discomfort as I could be in. Trying hard to look at the bright side.

  12. #12
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    Hang in there Alice, you'll see changes. I was amazed at what occured by 1 month in....I had obvious changes...I have pics on my blog somewhere, where you can see that.
    You'll be so glad you are doing this!!!
    Candy--ceramic uppers/metal lowers--sentenced for 24 months!







  13. #13
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    Alice the thin flexible archwires are how treatment needs to start, as these are the archwire that will loosen and start your tooth alignment. The thin flexible wires do most of the work, so keep watching for changes.

    Good ways to detect changes, are by taking photos regularly ... like once a month. The best photos are of your bite, from the left and from the right, so you can see your profile, plus one of your upper arch and one of your lower arch ... so you can compare the changes from that angle. The way I first found change, was when I was flossing. I noticed that some teeth were closer together and others not so tight ... so I knew things were happening.

    Good luck with treating your mouth sores and being able to bite again very soon! :thumb:
    After 5 years, 11 months and two days of stainless steel brackets ... my teeth now have upper and lower bonded, gold wire, retainers and removable clear retainers!

  14. #14
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    Well, I had the bite turbos removed and spacers put on today. He made light of my situation until he saw how many canker sores I have (seven) and said glue build-ups don't work at all. I'll be getting a bite plate instead. I don't know if it's going to be removable or not. I figure I can live with the insane amount of space between my teeth but I can't live with anything bugging my tongue and making me drool 24/7.

    Either way for the next week - pain allowing - I'm going to embrace my overbite and eat as much chewing required food as possible.
    Last edited by Alice; 04-09-2009 at 02:30 PM.

  15. #15
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    It's great that your ortho is prepared to consider options that may be easier for you Alice! :)

    Enjoy eating and chewing ... and life without the turbos! :thumb:
    After 5 years, 11 months and two days of stainless steel brackets ... my teeth now have upper and lower bonded, gold wire, retainers and removable clear retainers!

  16. Hi everyone,

    I'd love to hear from Alice what happened after... Seeing that it's a year later now.

    I've had a bottom brace on for a week and I am in the same situation... When I bite down, only one tooth on each side at the front touches the bottom teeth. My teeth at the back have 2-5mm gaps between them and it's been very difficult to eat a lot of things... for one, I just found out that spaghetti is impossible!

    Is there anyone who can let me know how long it took before they could bite down again?

    I have a check up in 3 1/2 weeks time, and basically, if my teeth are still like this, then 1. The braces are coming OFF (!) OR 2. They are being adjusted so that I can bite at least a little easier!!

    Thanks :bye:
    Last edited by LMontro; 05-05-2010 at 06:44 AM.

  17. #17
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    Cut the spaghetti up ... nothing is impossible! :party:

    Be positive and make things happen. It will take time for your bite to change ... but it should happen!

    Good luck! :thumb:
    After 5 years, 11 months and two days of stainless steel brackets ... my teeth now have upper and lower bonded, gold wire, retainers and removable clear retainers!

  18. #18
    Im happy someone else has those things on the back of their teeth! ive been looking all over i also have a stop on my teeth its so annoying for a few weeks then you get used to it and you can start to chew food again when i first got it i wanted to stop treatment too! hope everything works out for you

  19. Quote Originally Posted by xXaslanXx View Post
    Im happy someone else has those things on the back of their teeth! ive been looking all over i also have a stop on my teeth its so annoying for a few weeks then you get used to it and you can start to chew food again when i first got it i wanted to stop treatment too! hope everything works out for you
    Glad I'm also not the only one that got a bit freaked out and was ready to get the braces off after a day!

    Thanks for letting me know it gets easier :):)



    Traditional metal brace on bottom teeth to fix overcrowding

  20. Well - I'm day 2 with ceramics and turbos. Stinks - but not as much as how I feel when I see my crooked teeth in a picture! I can tolerate anything for a couple of months to get rid of that feeling. This has been a helpful thread for me! Thanks! And who knows - maybe I'll drop a couple of pounds! :-)

  21. Quote Originally Posted by I'm too old for this View Post
    Well - I'm day 2 with ceramics and turbos. Stinks - but not as much as how I feel when I see my crooked teeth in a picture! I can tolerate anything for a couple of months to get rid of that feeling. This has been a helpful thread for me! Thanks! And who knows - maybe I'll drop a couple of pounds! :-)
    Hi,

    Do you have the same problem with your teeth not closing together when trying to eat?

    It is for sure going to be a great opportunity to lose a few pounds... why not hey!? Eating has been quite a miserable experience for the last 6 days!



    Traditional metal brace on bottom teeth to fix overcrowding

  22. #22
    Yeah eating isnt fun at all with these things and all the food that gets stuck but ive had the stop on for almost a month now its not so bad any more just cant wait to get it off! but im glad other people have these i was so freaked out i wish you all luck with these nasty things D":

  23. #23
    Well, I just got my braces with bite turbos on Wednesday, and I've not noticed much of a problem (I've stuck to drinking liquids and milkshakes, but I can eat a cheeseburger with moderate difficulty, just takes forever since I can't chew properly). Mine are on the lateral incisors, not the central ones, giving me space for my tongue. That's probably why I'm not having so much of a problem.

    My jaw pain is actually relieved by the turbos unlocking my bite, allowing me to eat and speak for longer periods without pain, as well as letting me breathe better.

    Now, if you read my introductory post, you'll see the much more critical problem the braces are causing.
    Last edited by Protoman2050; 06-14-2010 at 03:41 AM.

  24. I am the same

    Hi Alice! I have had the same self-inflicted problem. In my desire for the perfect smile as an older lady I saved up and 3 months ago took the plunge. I cried too for 3 days wondering if I'd done the right thing. Why am I putting myself through this misery? My face looks distorted? It hurts! 3 months on I am a little more used to the braces but still have a soft diet and can't chew. I love my salads and fruit but unfortunately they are mostly off the menu for me. I have discovered new ways to eat though - I mash strawberries and banana, tinned fruit is softer (peaches and pears without added sugar). I can eat most tinned vegetables too but struggle with fresh unless mashed up. Lots of soups, with bread dropped in to soak and soften, over cooked pasta. Weetabix, porridge or yoghurt for breakfast with a smoothie. Try mashing carrots, turnip, sweet potato, yams. Rice pud, soft cake and ice-cream (I know you shouldn't but hey you have to eat something). My mouth was sore in places but I bought some dental wax and covered the parts that stuck out of the braces to stop them tearing my cheeks and lips. I am hoping that my braces will be off in less than 2 months and hoping it will all be worth it. This site is great and I've had some brilliant advice - you are not alone. Keep going.
    Last edited by Lizzie; 06-14-2010 at 04:54 AM. Reason: addition

  25. Quote Originally Posted by Alice View Post
    I was really hoping the answer wouldn't be "you'll figure it out." I know for a fact I won't be able to live like this. Something - no matter how small - has to give. I've seen those molar bumpers that are made of glue or something...that would be a huge step up from two pieces of metal constantly gashing my tongue open. They're nigh impossible to cover with wax because there's nothing to hold onto. I either have two sharp bars or a bulbous mountain of wax behind my teeth.
    I just got braces 4 days ago to correct a deep bite. My orthodontist put in two CERAMIC lumps behind my front teeth as a stop. This might be better than metal, but it has caused a huge gap between my molars so I have no chewing surface. I haven't been able to eat anything because of this. I don't see how I will be able to survive on a liquid diet for the next 18-24 months. I don't know why they didn't put something to build up my molars. At least I'd have a chewing surface.

    I'm wondering if I should ask for molar build-ups instead?
    Last edited by mowtful; 09-15-2011 at 06:39 AM.

  26. i had a tooth problem since the other day. i don't know what should I do with it. Is it my wisdom tooth?it's really aching.What should I do?

  27. #27
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    I just want to say how happy I am to see that I'm not alone! I thought the orthodontist had done something wrong because my back teeth don't meet and I can't chew any more. I hadn't imagined the frustration and misery this causes me at mealtimes. It would have helped if my orthodontist had explained that braces would stop me from chewing - I feel so abnormal! But now I've seen that I'm not alone. Thank you.

  28. #28
    As you get used to your trays, your jaw should relax some and you will be able to close your mouth with no problem. Your teeth are moving (reason you got a form of braces). I am at the point now that my back teeth don't meet without my trays in... When I asked my ortho, he assured me that by the end of treatment, my bite would back, but it would probably get worse before it got better. Obviously everybody's treatment is different, but keep in mind the reason you got braces or Invisalign. At times its very frustrating, but you will make it through it.
    5/03/2011 Round 1 28U/28L
    6/29/2012 Refinements #1 18U/18L
    1/29/2013 Finish Refine #1
    3/07/2013 Refinements #2 16U/16L started 4 attachments , 2 buttons, , power ridges
    6/07/2013 Trays 6-12 10 days/set
    8/10/2013 Overcorrection trays 14-16 3 wks/set elastics on left only left molars not aligned
    Total trays - 28+18+16 = 62



  29. #29
    As you get used to your trays, your jaw should relax some and you will be able to close your mouth with no problem. Your teeth are moving (reason you got a form of braces). I am at the point now that my back teeth don't meet without my trays in... When I asked my ortho, he assured me that by the end of treatment, my bite would back, but it would probably get worse before it got better. Obviously everybody's treatment is different, but keep in mind the reason you got braces or Invisalign. At times its very frustrating, but you will make it through it.
    5/03/2011 Round 1 28U/28L
    6/29/2012 Refinements #1 18U/18L
    1/29/2013 Finish Refine #1
    3/07/2013 Refinements #2 16U/16L started 4 attachments , 2 buttons, , power ridges
    6/07/2013 Trays 6-12 10 days/set
    8/10/2013 Overcorrection trays 14-16 3 wks/set elastics on left only left molars not aligned
    Total trays - 28+18+16 = 62



  30. Agree!
    Quote Originally Posted by Anny View Post
    Oh poor Alice! I just had my bottom ones applied recently and can completely relate :(

    I don't have any advice - I'm just offering empathy and hoping you can make it until the appointment. Its a huge and time investment and I'd hate to see it all go down the drain so quickly. Have you noticed your teeth moving yet?
    clinic time

  31. #31
    I registered so I'd have someone else to talk to about my troubles with my new braces... my husband is tired of my complaining, I know!

    I have the bumper on the back of my top front teeth... not something I'd planned on! I am not scheduled back to the otha for 10 weeks! In the meantime I cannot chew anything! Added to that, I will be out of state for a week promoting my business... what will I eat!

    Right now I keep getting migraines due to lack of food... in my busy life I find it hard to find food that will last me through the day. But after reading this blog, I am now determined to make myself some cream of- soups and regain my energy so I can take care of my family and business.

    I'm glad to know that I'm not alone.

    Cream of broccoli soup is first. Egg drop soup is second.... more ideas appreciated!

  32. #32
    So after 10 weeks of no chewing I have lost about 3 inches in my waist I thought because I could put my bottom front teeth behind the tabs on my top teeth that the orthodontist would take the tabs off... but no, not a good idea she tells me. My teeth are still being moved and chipping is still a concern. So, it's another 10 weeks of no chewing. I have got accustomed to this different eating; it is my bedroom pastimes that I really miss... 5 months of not being able to get mouthy with my husband is not fun for me at all! But I fear shredding him. Any solutions?

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