Tuesday, February 06, 2007

Why I Did It - Medical, Not Cosmetic

As more friends of mine read my blog, I'm starting to get questions and comments such as "wow you made yourself look different". Yes, that is true. But I do want to clarify that while an improved physical appearance is certainly one of the benefits, it was not the primary reason why I decided to get orthognathic surgery.

In my medical chart, they'd stated that I had "...significant skeletal deformity. Class III.". What does that mean? In laymen's terms, it means that my upper jaw had a retrusion and my lower jaw had a protrusion (see photos of my natural bite above), which negatively impacted speech as well as chewing functionalities. I had a serious malocclusion, and excessive wear and tear on my teeth because the contact surfaces were abnormal. Over the years I'd noticed my lower teeth slowly advancing forward, to the point that it formed a gap between my upper and lower front teeth.

I'd asked my orthodontist and surgeon what would happen if I chose NOT to proceed with any treatment at all. They said my bite would continue to worsen, and my chewing less effective. Clear speech would become more of a struggle. Also, my jaw joint pains would likely become more frequent and severe (I used to get jaw joint pains whenever I felt tired).

So folks, these were the MEDICAL reasons why I chose surgery, and why they'd labeled me a Skeletal Deformity Class III. I'm glad these problems would go away now that surgery has been completed. And if I happen to look different as a result - icing on the cake! :)

God, all I can think about now is FOOD. :)


chevyluvs112 said...

I was very interested in your story. I am going through the same exact process. I have to have this surgery. I am scared out of my mine. Don't worry I am older than you and I have to have braces too. Not looking forward to this process but can't wait for it to be over too! I will keep reading your story. I also have a blogspot under chevyluvs112 if you want to leave a message.
Good luck!!!!

Metoposcopist said...

Yeah, I just had the surgery towards the end of January, and this was my first week coming back into the swing of things. I started school yesterday (2/5) and I had a fellow student come up to me and apologize to me for thinking it was purely cosmetic. I told him, "Oh, it's no problem... I don't care!" And it really wasn't a big deal. I told him I had a skeletal deformity and it was corrective surgery. I didn't realize how many people think I was getting cosmetic surgery when it wasn't. I'm not offended by it... just suprised.