This appropriately juvenile, fashionably faux-punk Instagram photo is me in my new dentures. It's also the first time I've taken a picture of my mouth straight on, at least that I can remember, and showing my teeth. I've written about the reasons why here, in case you didn't know.
It's been one week since the dentist removed all of my teeth. One week since I've been couch-bound, my gums sutured shut, my entire face swollen. One week of liquid food stuffs and a cocktail of medications to make it bearable. So far it's been....interesting. Eating is weird. Talking is weirder. I'm relearning where to put my tongue to make consonant sounds and how to speak without slurring. Oh, and not having teeth in general is weird. It's been quite a while since I've been sans teeth, so that takes some getting used to. Also, the sneezing thing. Sneezing has been a trip.
Overall this venture has been an altogether rocky, painful, awkward, vulnerable undertaking.
You know what, though? I don't regret it. I do regret doing it the week before the semester started, though. That probably wasn't the best idea.
I have months of healing ahead of me. I'll need adjustments, impressions, and check-ups every few weeks for the foreseeable future. Solid food is still tricky business as my gums continue to shrink back down. It absolutely sucks at least 85% of the time. But I feel...lighter. I no longer feel trapped by medical problems beyond my control. I no longer feel trapped by the chronic pain and the constant anxiety of people recoiling from my bad teeth. Of being judged. Of being laughed at.
Dentures are dumb. They're clunky and weird. I'm so happy I have them.