Crozat and DNA Appliance 6 Month Update

Updated photos at the bottom of post.

The title pretty much sums it up. Unfortunately, life got in the way of my DNA documentation and I’m behind. A lot of things have happened. The last update was on September 29th. At that point I had my upper mRNA appliance for approximately three months and my lower appliance for about six weeks. Around the beginning of October, my dentist switched my lower appliance for a new one that I was approved for, called a Crozat. Unlike the mRNA, it has no acrylic and no wires to hook on the upper appliance, so, my comfort has greatly improved. My dentist said I was making progress with my jaw coming forward and now it was time to use the Crozat to gently nudge my lower teeth out. If you recall in earlier posts, my severe underdevelopment, malocclusion, and tori are interfering with my breathing. We’re hoping that the Crozat does its job and there will not be a need for surgery to remove the tori. We’ll see.

I’ve been using the Crozat all day and night except when eating and I’ve seen remarkable change. We had to change the turning of the upper appliance to one half turn every four days because my teeth were very sore turning a full turn every five to seven days. Last week I had expanded my appliance as far as it could go and it was time for a new one. They took new upper impressions and today I received my new appliance. I already love it more. Much less acrylic, no side wings to catch a lower appliance, and it feels less bulky.

I continue to use the CPAP. I still hate it, but I feel so much better using it, so, I carry on. I imagine they will be testing me soon to see how I’m sleeping without it. Some nights I don’t wear it and I usually don’t sleep well. I drove from Florida to Maryland over the holidays and didn’t fall asleep at the wheel once. Yay me! CPAP has been good for that. As for appliance changes, since the Crozat has moved my lower teeth out, I have noticed a huge change in how my tongue feels in my mouth. It almost sits in the bottom of my mouth as it should, where as before, I had no choice but to rest it between my teeth because it simply didn’t fit in my mouth.

Next, I have some tongue, lip, and jaw exercises that I need to master. I’m also getting back on a stricter primal diet to lessen inflammation. In two days I’ll start adjusting the new upper appliance. Six months down, at least twelve months to go. Here’s to an amazing start to 2016!

2015-07-06 15-11-04 -0500
July 6, 2015
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January 5, 2016
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July 6, 2015
January 5, 2016 – left molar has moved
Start of Treatment
After 6 months
New DNA appliance








Lower mRNA Appliance Update – One Month

It’s been at least a month since I received the bottom part of the mRNA appliance. Not a lot has happened with my mouth since then that is visibly apparent. It appears my teeth are starting to straighten a bit, but the real evidence of them shifting is that most of my teeth feel loose.

Sleeping with both appliances AND the CPAP is indeed a challenging experience. Heaven for bid if I desperately need a drink at night or feel the sudden urge to cough, sneeze, or vomit. The lower appliance essentially locks the jaw forward and together with the upper maxilla. My ritual at night now includes adding wax to the front bumper wire, otherwise, I feel as though my bottom lip will be severed when I awake in the morning. Sleepy time routine: put both appliances in, wax on, apply lip balm, tape mouth shut, don CPAP mask and eye mask.

I’ve mostly just soldiered on and put my mind to the task of getting this whole experience over with as quickly as possible.  Because I’m sleeping all night and sleeping better than I ever have, oh and I can function all day without feeling as if I will collapse, soldiering on has not been a terrible thing. I’m up at 5:30 this morning writing this after all. Rising before seven was essentially unheard of in my previous life. 

Emotionally and psychologically, I’m holding up well and have seen great improvements in my overall well being. I did have a small breakdown while on vacation. I think the reality of my situation was brought into focus and for a moment I felt weak, vulnerable, and insecure about my health. That passed, of course, and I’m back to soldiering on with the end goal of diminished sleep apnea events and discontinued use of CPAP.

Physically, I don’t notice any improvement in my nighttime ability to breath. I have expanded both appliances multiple times now and the top appliance has become somewhat unsteady. I’m sure they will sort that out at my next visit. My maxilla arch feels a wee bit wider and though I still haven’t found the natural resting place for my mandible, my bite is starting to come together. There is definitely more space between my teeth for flossing.

I feel as though the novelty of this whole process has dissolved and I’m now in for the long haul of grinding it out. I don’t wish the next 18 months of my existence to fly by, though I welcome my next big break through in this palate expansion experiment. FWIW, I experimented one night with sleeping without my mask, just the appliance and my mouth taped shut. It was an epic fail. I tossed and turned until I simply had to put the mask on to breath. 

And the sun is coming up. I’ve witnessed more sunrises in the last two months than my whole life combined. Arising early has meant I have to rearrange my day. I now get up and make the coffee, instead of my husband. I do something every morning before I get ready for work, either write, garden, walk, something. I’m almost sorry now that I didn’t do something about this sooner, if only for having more life to live.

CPAP: Living With It or Not

mRNA Appliance & CPAP Update

The mRNA appliance is actually kind of awesome. I can feel it “doing something” which equates to meaningful change toward a permanent solution to my sleep apnea among other things. This past week, in addition to being able to breath through my nose for the first time in my life, my husband has declared my snoring to be just a soft purr or something like that. This is all improvement before starting CPAP. I still can’t tell much difference looking in the mirror, but my lower jaw is now freely moving forward and I can “feel” my top dental arch taking on a fuller shape. Continue reading

Are You A Chronic Smiler?

RBFResting bitch face is my new default facial expression. You’re probably wondering why or you could care less because you don’t know me. Take a look at this post where I’m smiling. I’ve been a chronic smiler my whole life. I never gave it much thought before, though I’ve definitely been mistaken for not being serious. For someone who’s run through bouts of depression and extreme social anxiety, I think it was my way of showing the world everything was alright. Now I’m beginning to wonder if there was something deeper at play. I’ll explain.

This will all tie back into epigenetic orthodontics, you’ll see. Continue reading

Mouth Breathing, Sleep Apnea, and Depression

mRNA Update

My research on Epigenetic Orthodontics has led me down a deep rabbit hole, but first, an appliance update. I’m now into week three of wearing the mRNA appliance and I’ll be picking up my APAP machine next week. I have mixed feelings about that which I’ll explain later. My teeth have shifted enough now that I can almost touch the two front and bottom teeth together for the first time since my twenties. There is still pressure in the roof of my mouth and breathing through both nostrils is now a regular event.

Quantifying Genetic & Environmental Influences

I want to share some of the information I’ve come across recently on epigenetic orthodontics, mouth breathing, and related health issues. Continue reading

Epigenetic Orthodontics in Panama City Beach

The decision to undergo palate expansion took me by surprise. I decided to find a dentist or orthodontist who would devise a non-invasive treatment for my situation after I felt certain that holistic dentistry was a viable option. My online searching led me to most any major city and no one within a 250 mile radius. I surmised this would probably be considered alternative treatment, so, paying out of pocket. This was going to take serious future planning. In the meantime, I still needed to see a dentist for basic care. I decided to visit the closest dentist to my house. I had heard positive things about her and her staff. She calls her office The Dental Spa. What’s not to like? Continue reading

mRNA Appliance One Week Update

I’ve been wearing the mRNA appliance for one week now. I wear it the recommended 14-16 hours per day. I’m not speaking any better, though I’m getting used to talking. My sleeping is good and bad. Some nights I sleep well and some nights I toss and turn. No different from usual. My tossing and turning could be just as easily attributed to my monkey brain not turning off.

There is no visible difference yet, though two unusual and unexpected things happened this week. While I was eating, I thought I bit into a rock. It was my tooth. The teeth in the back are starting to make contact in new and different ways and it was a weird sensation to actually be able to use more teeth to chew food. Continue reading