Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Catch me & my dog on Animal Planet this Saturday!

OK, so yes, it's been over 2 years since I last blogged. Terrible. F.

I'm still going through some refinement trays for my pesky bottom teeth. One of the center ones just won't twist. After several attempts through both Invisalign and through my ortho's own trays (since they're faster to make than Invisalign), we're doing 1 more round of Invisalign where I got attachments to 3 of my bottom teeth.

Why is it taking so long, you might ask? Well, truth be told, it's been stretched out because of my busy schedule with business trips. In addition, there were several times I had to delay seeing my ortho again because of performances I was going to be in, and a fear of getting attachments on my teeth that would be distracting.

Performances??? Yep. You see, my dogs and I are a Tricks Performing team. We travel around the area giving performances at different venues (dog events, nursing homes, military bases, fundraisers, charities, cocktail parties, and book signing parties - since my dog was featured in the book).

Through our performances, we've been able to acquire 3 different agents for my older dog, Atka, who was mentioned earlier in the blog. One of these agents chose us to be the ideal representation of Atka's breed on Animal Planet's TV show, "Dogs 101." In addition, we were being considered by the producers to be the "story dog" for the episode as well. In the end, a different dog was chosen, but BOY OH BOY were we thrilled to have been a part of this great show!

Our passion is proper breed education to improve matches with owners and pets, and to decrease the amount of dogs being surrendered at shelters because of mismatches. So, to be able to take part in a national show on a well-respected channel such as Animal Planet to address this very thing was AWESOME!

Which brings me to the title of this post. This Saturday, 10/2/10, we will be on Animal Planet at 8pm for their series, "Dogs 101." Be sure to catch us or set your DVRs for it! Atka is representing the American Eskimo Dog, but you won't be able to miss him with his skateboard and hoop jumping in the studio w/ the white background.

If you'd like to see some of his videos of his tricks and past performances, visit his YouTube page, or send him a friend request on Facebook:



Below is a picture of when we made the cover of a local newspaper for one of our performances earlier this year:

That's all for now. Will try to update you all more with Invisalign-related stuff shortly!

"See you" on TV this Saturday ;)

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

6th & last of the 1st set of Refinement Trays

It's actually the last day of September, 2008, and I'm finally trying to get my blog up-to-date. Yes, it took over a year for me to get back on this thing.

I finished my 6th & 7th of the 1st set (you read correctly - first set) of Refinement Trays without any incident. At the end, my bottom teeth were indeed more crooked, and needed some IPR (interproximal reduction - or filing down of teeth in between) to make room for those little front guys to face straight.

Before that was done, I asked Dr. Sargiss to remove the buttons on my top teeth since my younger brother's wedding was in a few weeks. YAY - they were OFF. No more funny faces from people when they catch glimpses of the buttons and try to figure out just what the heck they are. Finally. We both decided we were happy with the uppers. They were the best they were going to get without cosmetic surgery, so we had Invisalign make the thicker and sturdier retainer trays out of the last set of upper impressions in this set of Refinement trays.

I made another appointment to get the IPR and a new mold of the bottom teeth done. The IPR and new mold needed to be in the same appointment so that there was no further shifting of my teeth. There was no pain or anything when the IPR was done. No type of anesthetic (topical or anything) was needed, either. It just sounded alot worse (and smelled alot worse, since you get that smell of your teeth getting filed away) than it actually was.

Below are pictures of my teeth after Refinement trays 7. For the life of me, I can't find the pics I took of what they looked like after Tray 6, but they weren't very different from what they looked like in Tray 5 and Tray 7. I'll add a new post about the 2nd set of Refinement trays afterwards.

Front center full smile:

Center - mouth agape:



Different angle of lowers to emphasize the how crooked they got:

Left (good) side:

Right (bad) side:

Saturday, August 25, 2007

5th Refinement Trays

2 more trays left!! Yeah!!!!

Unfortunately, I see a little problem possibly occurring. My center lower incisors appear to be getting more crooked instead of less. ??? Will keep an eye on that and will let Dr. Sargiss know about it.

I also had a consultation with my regular dentist, Dr. Bocian, on the cosmetic things I wanted to have done. He took some macro pictures of my teeth, and plotted out their alignment in relation to each other on the computer. What he did was pretty cool, since I never thought about doing that before, even though I'm so careful about photographically documenting this process.

Center smile, mouth closed:

Center, mouth agape:


Lower (see how crooked that right tooth got all of a sudden?):

Left side (I forgot to take a right side pic - DUH):

4th Refinement Trays

Halfway through this set of trays, I realized I was halfway done with my refinement period! Whoo-hoo!

However, I'm not really seeing too much progress, even in the pictures. I can't wait for this refinement period to be over. I certainly hope I'll be able to do all the final touches (whitening, veneers/bonding) before my brother's wedding at the beginning of October. I should be finished with all my trays a few weeks beforehand, so hope to have time to do everything else before October 6th!

Center smile:

Center, mouth agape:



Right side (looking a little better - unless it's just the angle I took it at):

Left side:

3rd Refinement Trays

Things are looking good. No major problems to report. Invisalign business as usual.

Center smile:

Center, mouth agape:

Ugly right side:

Pretty left side:



2nd Refinement Trays

Not much really to report on here, other than the process going pretty smoothly. Again, my teeth hurt like the dickens in the first couple days, but got a lot better afterwards.

I'm really self-conscious about my buttons. When I remove the trays, they're even more apparent, so I feel like I can't escape them, and that there's a flashing neon sign above my head with arrows pointing to the buttons, screaming at everyone to look at them. My coworkers assure me that they hardly notice them, and only do so because I'm drawing attention to them (isn't that always the case?), but I do make a point not to smile very wide in conversation, or, if I do, look away or down so they can't see me. Actually, I'll also smile with my lips closed, or will exaggerate a smile and turn it into either a laugh or an expression of surprise, both of which require my hand to cover my rudely open mouth. I'm fully aware of how ridiculous I'm being, but it's a great coping mechanism for now!

With such small movements, I honestly can't visually see the difference each tray is making, but I know it must be doing something because of the pain at the beginning of each new tray. Nevertheless, below are the results post-Refinement Tray # 2:

Center (full) smile:

Center, mouth agape:



Right side:

Left side:

Center (normal) smile:

At the end of the 1st Refinement Trays

OK, truth be told, even though this entry has a date of 8/25/07, I'm actually finishing the typing of this in October. The summer months have flown by, and with my brother's wedding, life has kept me extremely busy.

In short, my teeth hurt like heck for the first several days with these refinement trays, but here are the pictorial results:

Full center smile:

Center, mouth agape:



Right side (with my ugly Flintstone-rock-like crossbite tooth):

Closeup of right side button:

Left side:

Closeup of left side button:

What my teeth look like from the bottom looking up. Notice my center line being off, and how my right lateral incisor really just has its lower tip over the bottom teeth, while the incisor on my left side is firmly and completely over the bottom teeth: