Third post op appointment was with Doctor Gunson today. Time has been going by actually surprisingly fast and I’ve been out in California for over 3 weeks. Ever since I have felt more energetic and socially acceptable in terms of swelling we have been going out and doing more in the city. Beach days, shopping, and even a movie have kept me busy! I admire everyone I see eating outside on the patio of a restaurant and hope they are TRULY enjoying their meal:) We saw ‘The Fault in Our Stars’ on Sunday and it was the most beautiful and emotional movie I have seen in a very long time! Definitely recommend. It is a tear jerker though and it is a weird feeling that I can’t feel myself crying until the tears hit just above my lips. Haha the numbness creates some weird sensations.
Speaking of tears I had my first pretty painful experience trying to change my bands today. For those who know me they know I am as squeamish as they come..and as I mentioned last time I am less than thrilled about the thought of touching a hook that is coming out of my bone and pulling on it to try and get a rubber band hooked on. After I did my exercises this morning I went to put the bands on again and when I pulled my lip back I realized the wire has made a pretty significant cut/indent in my lower lip and had started to bleed so that was lovely. Then when I went to try and attach the rubber band around the hook the hook slid to the side and sent a horrible pain through my gums and teeth. It really is a weird sensation to describe but it kind of felt like biting into something extremely cold along with a sharp pain. The last thing I want is to spend my days counting the hours until my next dreaded band change so I was hoping that Dr. G would have a fix for me.
When I saw Dr. G he took off my bands and let me stretch. I informed him right away of what had happened earlier in the morning and he looked and right away said my hook was twisted and pulled out too far, causing the cut in my lip and probably some of the discomfort. He said some patients experience difficulties like I am but on the bright side it means my nerves are starting to wake up more. He twisted the hook to a new position and that was pretty uncomfortable, but quick, so I managed. He commented on how my bite midline is perfect and usually people with joint problems have a shift to one side or the other but he doesn’t see that with me. He also commented on how far I can open my mouth for it only being week three and how all my incisions are closed meaning I can brush all my teeth now (I was having to stay away from the bottom back teeth). All of this was very positive to hear! There are some other minor adjustments he is trying to make with how certain teeth are touching. He added some more bands in other places and it was almost impossible for me to open my mouth. He sent me away for a few hours and then I came back for him to see the shift in my teeth. It looked good but he wanted to keep me like that for longer. So here I am, completely banded shut and I go back on Thursday for him to take a look at it again. Kind of feels like I am back to week one with not being able to take my bands off and open my mouth and drinking complete liquid through my teeth but it’s only for a day so I will embrace not having to change the bands for that day:) Dr. G is going to get me some numbing gel to put on my hook before I change the band from now on. He put some on before he re-banded me and it seemed to help. I only felt a little zing and it was more bearable. Hoping that’s the key!
I also got to see my post op xray! It was amazing to see how many plates and screws are now in my face! The pics are below. The first is pre and post side profile pics. the second has a pre op X-ray on bottom and the top xray is post op with all the new hardware I have! There is also a picture of the hook to give you a better idea of the little devil that is messing with me:) In that pic you can see the hook coming up from where it is attached to the bone and a rubber band wrapped around it. You can also see the line in my lip from being pressed against it too much. The white pieces coming up from my lower lip are my stitches.
All in all this wasn’t my brightest day i’ve had but I know that is to be expected. Any person who has gone through this process knows some days will be better than others. Besides, most times when I start feeling down I can relate it to hunger and I know how to fix that, at least temporarily. 🙂 I go back to Dr. G Thursday and I am hoping for more bits of good news, no matter how small!