It’s been a week now since my maxillofacial surgery and I think things are starting to heal up quite nicely. The bleeding has stopped, the swelling has gone down and the pain is gone. Only thing is, I can’t open my mouth wider than an inch. There’s no pain or nothing, I just can’t open wide. Need I worry? Of course! I can’t eat my favourite McDonald’s food!
I wasn’t worried much about this until one of my coworker told me that she had the same procedure done on her wisdom tooth. She had all four taken out at the same time as well. But in her case, she was healed within three days. By the time I talked to her, it was over a week since the surgery. Since she had the same amount of work done on her wisdom tooth as mine and she healed up in three days, I was starting to worry if the orthodontist dislocated my jaw or something. Because the swelling was gone except there was just this bump that felt like a bone. There was no pain when I touched it.
My coworker recommended that I call the orthodontist and see if they know what it’s about. Later on in the day, she recommended that I visit St. Joe’s emergency and have them take a look at it. I don’t like to visit the doctor or anything, never have. So I waited and hoped that my friend, who’s studying to get her PhD, would come to the library and study on the fourth floor, like she usually does on a Sunday.
A few minutes after the library opened, sure enough, she walks through the doors, the doctor is in. I paid her a visit and as always, she’s got her text book opened with her high liters out. I tell ya, she’s been studying from this book for years or something. It’s a pretty thick book.
I got around to asking her if she’s got anything about the jaw in that thick book of her. One quick look in the index and she knew exactly what page to look on. I just wanted to see if there was any illustration about a bone in the jaw area, which there wasn’t. She flipped to the page that shows the temporomandibular joint and how it works.
After a minute of examining my jaw, she knew gave me a prognosis. Yes, she was examining my jaw while other patrons were looking. I wasn’t sure if they were all looking, I didn’t turn to look, just glanced over with my eyes. It’s amazing what she can tell just by moving her fingers around my jaw. Felt kinda nice too.
Dr. Barbara’s prognosis: During the surgery, my mandible (jaw) was opened for an extended period of time. There’s a muscle that closes the jaw, called the masseter. The masseter was strained due to the prolonged extension. She recommended that I apply heat to it to help relax the muscles.
She’s a genius, ain’t she? Hellz yeah!
I went back downstairs and told my coworker about my friend’s prognosis and of course, she doesn’t believe me and still suggests that I go to the emergency room, which I didn’t do. I waited until Monday morning to call the orthodontist and explain my situation to them. Because I already knew what it was, I wanted to see if they can tell me anything I didn’t know. I got in touch with one of the nurses and they told me the exact same thing my friend told me, only they didn’t use any medical terms. They just said that the swelling is still there and I should apply heat to it. Because I’ve already heard all the details, I didn’t bother asking any further questions.
Now, I know what the problem is and I don’t have to worry. Nothing is dislocated and it’s a minor problem that should be gone within the next couple weeks. Looks like I’m stuck with soup for a while.