I didn’t buy a grill like Madonna, but I do have metal on my teeth.  Good old classic braces. Even in my years, the combination of having a bite issue and my front teeth rotating. I finally decided to get this taken care of. This was originally brought to my attention back in my 20’s, and over time the subject came up at annual visits to the dentist. 

In the last 2 years, I have become a bit obsessed with taking care of these chompers, especially as they are the only ones I will naturally have in my lifetime.  This is my daily teeth routine. I start with swishing with mouthwash, then brush with the mouthwash, rinse, floss, and finish off brushing with toothpaste. I’ve been good at keeping up on my regular dental checkups. If I have any issues,  I make an appointment right away. Over the last few years any old fillings that I had with metal, have been replaced with porcelain. I tend to laugh a lot and the old fillings looked like cavities. Plus, it makes me feel confident and who doesn’t want that?

A few years ago, was the first time I seriously thought about finally getting braces. I found out the cost was going to be a pretty substantial expense, at the time when there was no way I could justify it. The thought always weighed on my mind, and the idea of getting them never went away.

Fast forward to last year. I found a great orthodontist in NYC, recommended to me by my dentist. I made an appointment and had a consultation. I met with Dr. Mintzberg from Chambers Street Orthodontics and liked her immediately. She made me feel so comfortable. She explained the treatment process, and what my expectations should be. I was told that my treatment should last approximately 12 months. At the end of our consultation she asked me if I had any more questions. Then I was off to meet with the office manager, who explained the cost breakdown based on my insurance. She also asked me what type of braces I would want. I told her “I don’t need anything fancy”. In all honesty, metal braces are fine for me and it is also the lowest cost option. After she explained what my insurance would pay and my out of pocket costs, I realized it was affordable. This was the time to get it done, so sign me up!

Liza's grill

Liza’s grill, not as fancy as Madonna’s

So with that, I had my brackets put on. I had a few days when it was really tough to eat and my mouth was sore. I experienced some discomfort when brushing and flossing my teeth. I have to use a special braces’ floss, which reminds me of sewing.  You have to feed, what looks like a floss needle through your teeth and out behind the braces. A little tedious at first, but there was no way I was going to hold back.

There were also a few days I needed to take Advil, but other than that, the process hasn’t been bad. My brushing regime has increased in time, as I have to take a bit more time flossing. I have also added the use of a spiral brush through each of the brackets, along with my normal routine.

I have my first “adjustment” in 3 weeks, so I’ll have to see how I feel afterwards. But as of yet, I have no regrets. I realize that my diet will consist mostly of soft foods. I’ll miss out on my occasional treats of Hot Tamale candies, bagels and lox, and pistachios. But I figure, It won’t be like this forever, and anyway it’s healthier for me. With the way time flies, these metal babies should be off in not time!