Friday, May 10, 2013
MARAs- What You'll Want to Know
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Well, it's been about five weeks since my post I'm Free!... Or Am I? In which I was finally free of my expander, and had it replaced by a simple retainer. Here, as promised, is an update on my new appliance.... the MARA.
MARA is short for Mandibular Anterior Repositioning Appliance, and it is meant to move a receded jaw back into the proper position. It attaches to four teeth, two on the bottom and two on the top, with metal arms on each side that make it so that you cannot close your jaw without moving the bottom forward so that your front teeth match up correctly. Here are a few pictures to illustrate this...
This device, I will say, is much easier to tolerate than the expander ever was. As can be expected, it causes some stress to the lower jaw when it moves forward, but the pain subsides after a while. My biggest concern was the fact that I actually couldn't close my teeth at all. Because my deep bite, my teeth made no contact with each other for the entire first day. Which in turn means that I couldn't chew, and had to swallow almost any food I ate whole.
Needless to say, this was rather distressing, and coupled with the aches from the device itself, I wanted to take it off immediately. However, after a good night's sleep, my jaw had moved forward enough so that I could once again close my mouth, and- amazingly- move my bottom teeth in front of my top teeth. I'd never been able to do that before, and I hadn't even been aware that you were supposed to be able to do that. At any rate, I'd say that the MARA is doing its job credibly, and I am impressed with its speed.
The orthodontists tell me that in a year, my jaw will be exactly where it's supposed to be, and I'll be left with only a few months of braces to go. :D
For any of you who might be getting MARAs, I will give you a word of encouragement; it doesn't last forever, and it's not bad at all when you get used to it. It will probably give you a temporary lisp, and you won't be able to chew quite right, but you'll figure out the system pretty fast. :)
In the mean time, I will start marking the calendar until the day I am really... truly... free.
*Marks calendar* *363 days to go*