Day 43: Looking and Sounding Angry . . .

Having your teeth banded shut for many hours a day, especially at work, is an interesting experience. Being banded shut means that although you can talk, you are doing so through closed (clenched) teeth and although you lips are somewhat moving, it is as if you are trying to pursue a career in ventriloquism.

Even worse than the talking issue is that your facial structure apparently projects an image of someone who is angry. Experiment for yourself; in a mirror, clench your teeth together and stat talking, being careful that your teeth do not move once and try to limit the amount that your lips can move also. Try a range of emotions; smiling, laughing (particularly freaky if you ask me), and talking in a normal, everyday manner.

So what did you see; did you see the emotions on your face or did you look and sound, well, angry. My point exactly! At least if I am wearing my bands, people can see them and naturally come to the conclusion that something has happened to my jaws or else something is wrong with me.

Without the bands on my teeth, I can obviously speak easier and you would think that I could talk just like I did before my surgery. However, that would be an incorrect assumption. To be honest, I cannot exactly pinpoint why I cannot talk normally apart from a few observations and guesses.

Firstly, my lips alternate between being numb or else they tingle incessantly. I have likened it to having a tooth out and the feeling your lips experience as a result of anesthesia. So trying to talk with that going on proves problematic, especially for a few sounds or letters (the letter S especially).

Secondly, the inside of my mouth seems cramped, especially around my cheeks and no doubt because of the swelling. This swelling causes my mouth not to open as fluidly as I would like and so when I speak, the sounds and words are not enunciated as they were pre-surgery.

That said, people can understand me just fine, I just sound different than I used to but given the fact I am an Englishman living in America, I already did sound different than everyone else!

I have my last weekly appointment with my surgeon tomorrow which means I have hit the magical six week mark. I will see my Orthodontist later on this week then every 'x' weeks after that. Apparently, where my surgeon is concerned, I will see him in a fortnight and after that every month but in terms of weekly visits, they are no more! :)

How time flies when you have double jaw surgery!

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