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Ceramic Braces to Finish the Job Invisalign Didn't - Houston, TX

This story is about Ceramic braces, but first I...

This story is about Ceramic braces, but first I have to tell you that I wrote a previous review about my Invisalign Braces that I wore for 1-1/2 years, titled "Anxiety and Elation about Invisalign." I am not crazy. Invisalign did straighten my teeth, but didn't failed to correct the slight over-jet of my front teeth sitting on the two neighboring teeth. This was the main reason I got Invisalign braces was because I didn't want my teeth all bunched up in front. Invisalign also failed to move my bottom right teeth to an aligned position I paid $6,500 out of pocket in full with no insurance. To some people my Invisalign result would be fine if you just wanted average teeth.

I had a picture of a beautiful smile that was uniquely my own choice. Not someone else's generic smile! I kept asking for refinements that weren't working after 1-1/2 years and decided to pay the balance in full and decline my retainer.

I googled Orthodontist in my area, and got lots of phone numbers for ads saying Orthodontists, but when I checked their credentials, they were just dentist that do Orthodontics. I specifically asked, "Are you licensed as an Orthodontic Dentist?" and the majority answer was no. I told them, "No thanks, and hung up."

I am the most blatantly honest reviews you'll ever read, so I may say things that no one else would so be prepared. I always say don't ask me a question because I will tell you exactly what I am thinking.

Several people had told me about Dr. Vijay Bhagia, of Space Center Orthodontics. They swear they've had great results. It's a Orthodontic office designed like a spaceship with games for children. I'll be honest. I am not and have never been a fan of children. So I imagined this place to be one of those annoying places filled with kids that would get on my nerves. I heard the great reviews but declined even looking the place up based upon hearing it catered to children.

It was also far from where I live and would be a long drive from the east end of Galveston to Clear Lake. I put off the idea of going there for a long time. I called another place but hadn't heard any great reviews. So with great anxiety I decided to try to put my feelings about going to a place that caters to children that might get on my nerves aside and just go for a consultation at Space Center Orthodontics.

On my first Consultation I expected to walk in the door and be assaulted by children running about the clinic, whining or crying kids, but on my visit their weren't any children. Just adults. Kids do come there though. I could look around and see their were lots of video games and space ship looking entertainment for kids. There was a nice coffee and tea and beverage area for all clients. There was a real ice cream dispensing machine for after your visit that kids and adults would like. The atmosphere was quiet and pleasant. So far I didn't bolt out of there. My anxiety was put to rest by very kind and attentive staff. Someone came out and gave me the grand tour. They showed me where I could sign in or get info about my case online when I come for a visit. The staff showed me a nice clean tooth brushing area to come to and brush, floss, or use mouthwash before or after each procedure. The staff didn't take me to private rooms there was a circle in the middle of the dental office of neatly arrange orthodontic chairs and a technician for each station doing braces. I witnessed Dr. Bhagia overseeing all the trained orthodontic techs work and visiting with each and every patient. At the time, it didn't occur to me that the Orthodontist may not be the one adjusting my braces. There was so much to observe in the clinic that those kind of things don't hit you till later. I was just in awe of how different this office was than other dental practices. There were a lot of clients in the circle and none were complaining. In fact everyone seemed happy. Then the staff showed me a few private rooms just in case there is some reason the client prefers a private room, but most do not.

After the tour, it was time to go talk to the financial consultant and talk directly to Dr. Vijay Bhagia. They have several pictures of teeth on the wall and he asked me which one of those would I like my teeth to look like. I selected the one where the teeth are the most wide to the left and right. Dr. Bhagia then showed me another photo and asked, "If you teeth turn out more like this photo then how are you going to feel?" I said, "I am going to feel like dying." Dr. Bhagia looked disappointed and said "I wouldn't want you to feel like dying. I don't need you money that bad." Those teeth still look bunched up and I am trying to get a more wide and slanted down look. I hate teeth that slant out or are bunched up" So, Dr. Bhagia said then you probably won't like my teeth and showed me his teeth which were slightly slanted outward. My no comment and smirk was probably like a thousand words. His teeth were not bad, just not the yuppie kind of cosmetically enhanced teeth I admire. I love truly spectacular teeth. I was thinking it never ceases to amaze me how a person who sells any product can advise others if they have not done whatever they are selling. How do you consult with a hairstylist with bad hair, a cosmetic surgeon with a wrinkled face and huge nose, or a orthodontist with uneven teeth or slanted teeth that didn't get braces himself? I'm just being honest. How can those people possibly understand a perfectionist. Then he asked me what did I think about his financial consultant's teeth which he did braces on. (Good lord, I told you do not ask me a question because I will not hesitate to tell the truth and nothing but the whole truth.) His financial consultant was pretty and friendly and her teeth were nice but when I looked at her teeth they were straight but still the kind of teeth that looked bunched up in the front. So I said, "I think her teeth look okay, and they were beautiful teeth, but her teeth are not how I want my teeth to look, hers are slightly bunched up like mine are." The financial consultant and Dr. Bhagia looked shocked at my honestly. I bet I spent nearly 2 hours showing the Dr. Bhagia and the financial consultant graph on how I expect my teeth to move...and I was not going to be happy if they did not move to the left and right. And I was going to walk out if he said he could not move them in that direction. I wanted it clear, I do not want someone else's generic smile. I am seeking individual tweaking until I get the desired alignment of my teeth. So Dr. Bhagia said he would try. He can't promise I'll get my exact idea but he'll try to get close to it.

He left he consulting office and came back in with this $700 cosmetic dentistry book that was given to him by a great cosmetic dentist who is very high dollar and makes his cosmetic teeth in Italy. He showed me fabulous reconstructions of teeth and told me "The majority of my patients wouldn't appreciate this book but I can see you are different." I did love the book. My teeth are important. I remember being poor and not going to a dentist until my late 20's. I don't want average teeth. I want beautiful teeth when I am done.

So after much debate, I decided to get braces again. I choose ceramic ones because they looked the best. They were so clear that you could hardly see them. I came to an agreement of 4,450. Paid $2.090 down, and insurance should cover the remaining cost I know some of you will look at my beginning photos and think I am nuts or crazy to spend this when my teeth appear nearly straight in photos, but nearly is not my idea of how I want my teeth to look. I want my two front teeth aligned inside of the two neighboring teeth, not sitting on them. It's difficult to see but they are sitting on the two neighboring teeth.

They fit me in that day. The staff lead me to the circle of of chairs in the middle of the Orthodontics clinic. A technician, not the the Orthodontist, put on my braces... This was okay because the Orthodontist did map out the plan for the technician. I would have never assumed the Orthodontist would not be the one doing the teeth, but I did not ask this question. I don't care who adjust my braces as long as the Orthodontist is really supervising and respectfully honoring my vision of how I want my teeth, not just some standard treatment everyone gets. It was not uncomfortable or painful. The only weird thing was that the technician put a blue glue on my back molars so that I could not close my teeth completely together and this felt weird and uncomfortable. She said she did this so that I would not bite down and break off some attachment on the back teeth. She said the glue would wear down in a couple of days. It didn't, it stayed too thick for weeks almost a month and then wore down just slightly and it was too far to drive to go back. I forgot to get my free ice cream before I left the clinic. I regretted that all the way home:) Overall, the clinic itself was fabulous, the Orthodontist and staff were outstandingly friendly and personable, there were no annoying children (on that day.) I liked everything about the visit. It was impressive, but will I get the result I am hoping for? Only time will tell.

My Orthodontic plan was set up for one year only. I was schedule to come in only every 10 weeks. After I got home and calculated this up I realized this was only about 5 visits in one year. I got extreme anxiety. I thought how is anyone going to be able to tweak my teeth the way I want them in 5 visits? This did not seem right, or worth it for my $4,450! So I emailed the office and wrote that I am having difficulty understanding that, and having extreme anxiety and don't like that. Their answer was "With new braces most people want the convenience of fewer visits." Well, I am not most people. I don't want to wear my second set of braces one day more than the expected year. I want my Orthodontist right on my teeth as often as possible. I think they should hand each patient a hand held mirror on each visit and ask each patient's opinion about how they would like their teeth tweaked, and do that. So they agreed to see me every 6 weeks. I have not got to go to that visit yet. It only been 4 weeks.

Meanwhile the cable guy came to set up my cable and had braces. I asked him how often does your Orthodontist adjust your teeth? He said, "Every 5 weeks like clock work." I asked, "Who adjust your teeth?" and he looked puzzled and said, "The Orthodontist." I asked every single person I saw with traditional braces that question and all reported about the same. This gave me a little more anxiety about if I made the right choice by going to Space Center Orthodontic. The clinic is great, the staff is great, but am I getting expert Orthodontics? Only time will tell. And I will tell you as I go along.

During the first few weeks I only had slight soreness in my teeth. I learned to use the wax on sharp areas of the braces because yes they will cut up your cheeks. I bought the Water Pic Water Flosser and that is so great and comforting to the gums. As long as I use it I do not have to use old fashion floss. It feels like a shower massage to the gums. I just love it. About the 3-4 week I start to see and feel movement of my teeth. I felt some nerve pain in the back teeth and start to see undesired spacing which probably has to happen to later move the teeth. Then I started to actually see one side of my front teeth lift up, not down and my neighboring tooth sort of slide behind it more than before, but I remembered that initially on any type of braces the teeth start out by loosening then are later tweaked to position. I am not concerned till I return for my 6 week follow-up.

On this review I will post photos of my teeth as I go along, but also post photographs of teeth that I want mine to look like. I have always liked wider spaced teeth. I like front teeth that are longer in the front. I personally do not like teeth that are all evened out the same length. I do not like slanted outward, bucked teeth, or teeth that bunch up in front. Just simply straightening a persons teeth to some generic form is not going to make every patient happy, each person has their unique idea of the look they want. I certainly do.

I heard the Dr. Bhagia tell the technician, "Each time Ms. Braskey comes she is going to have questions about how her teeth are moving." And I do not want someone to just ignore what I say. I want someone to give me a hand held mirror and show me what are we going to do today to move this and that tooth in the direction I am showing you I want it moved in?" Don't just put braces on my teeth and hope for the best. Listen to me. Do what I want as your patient. Right now when I look at the initial Ceramic Braces on my teeth I can not see anything pulling my teeth to the left and right to widen them. I have to ask about this on my 6 week follow-up.

This is important to me. After $6,500 for Invisalign that didn't do the job, and now 4,450 for ceramic braces this is nearly 11,000 for Orthodontics. I have to be proactive and insist on directing the movement of my teeth or this money & time has been wasted.

I am going to posts photos to show readers the progress. I'll post them every month for the year. You can be my witnesses. I have not seen any great movement in the direction that I want in the first month, I am guessing I won't see any progress until later visits. For me and for the Orthodontist, Dr. Bhagia I posted photos of the shapes and alignment of teeth I like and hope my teeth to mirror. Only time and photos will tell you if that's possible.

So remember my first photos posted are my actual teeth after Invisalign. Close up you can see there is still a slight overlap that I want corrected and the bottom right teeth are still slightly misaligned. From a slight distance my teeth look fabulous in photos, but in person face to face they look more 3D and still bunched up in front. The other photos are photos of other peoples teeth that I admire and hope mine to mirror. After I do get the alignment I hope for I do plan on cosmetic bonding to reshape them. I plan on dental implants to replace extracted teeth.

Later, I was googling Ceramic braces and saw that Ceramic Braces also come in blingie colors like pink, and all other colors and shapes. I thought wow I could have gotten pink hearts. Don't assume just because someone is an adult they may not want something fun. I have a very flamboyant personality. I would have chosen colors if anyone asked. No one did.

Later I also learned this is the office of the slayed and now decease Orthodontist David Harris, who's wife Clara Harris murdered him. This was fascinating since I am a true psychic with the ability to photograph spirits. I'd love to do photographs in that office in the evening after dark. Just to see if David Harris ever visits. If so I would be able to capture paranormal images in photos.

Until the next update. This post is dated one month after getting ceramic braces done.

I have great anxiety about my teeth not moving. I...

I have great anxiety about my teeth not moving. I needed to post a wish for tooth pic to show my Orthodontist, I want my teeth to move a lot. A lot. I have a vision of how I want my bite to look and it's like the wish for photo posted. I want Dr. Bhagia to analyze how is he going to move my teeth each visit to get them they way I hope for. I don't want just random standard straightening. I want him to listen to my concerns. I want the Technician doing my teeth to listen and make this happen. I am going to bond my front teeth to be even and longer when my braces are off. I am going to get dental implants where back teeth were removed.

Hey RealSelf, I can not find an edit feature to...

Hey RealSelf, I can not find an edit feature to correct all my type-o's and there are a lot. I tend to type fast and I added words, or didn't use the right punctuation. It's a mess. I think I put "their" instead of there. Thanks for posting my review but can you fix my type o's please.

I went back to Space Center Orthodontics for my...

I went back to Space Center Orthodontics for my 5wk follow-up. It was approx 3PM. There were a few children there but none of them were annoying. (Remember earlier ...I mentioned that I am not a big fan of children.) All the staff came out and greeted me to ask me if I needed anything. Erica my Braces Technician came out to lead me back to the circle of chairs to do my teeth. As usual I was taking in all my surroundings. I saw Dr. Bhagia walking around the circles directing the Technicians work and greeting all his patients. Again none of the patients were complaining they were content. I got up and went to the tooth brushing station and brushed and used mouthwash that is provided to all patients. I think this is considerate to do this for the techs and dentist who has to work in your mouth. I came back and laid back in the dental chair as Erica the tech asked how I was doing. I couldn't help but notice Erica's beautiful teeth. They were perfectly straight, bright white and longer in front like the kind of teeth I admire. She said she never had braces and was just blessed with great teeth. Then Dr. Bhagia came over to my chair and told me that he read all the pages of my Real Self review, and for a moment I thought, "Oh lord...perhaps I am too honest" and held my breath for just a moment just in case he was gonna be upset with anything I've said or posted. He wasn't upset. He just whispered, "I did read some of your comments of not feeling comfortable with a lot of children...So you could make appointment earlier in the day before school lets out, if it starts to bother you." I said okay.

He looked at all my teeth and directed Erica what changes he wanted. All they did this time was put a thicker wire on my teeth that has more force. It's just slightly thicker. Erica said she didn't want to go too thick since it's the holidays and I might want to eat good food. A thicker wire would cause too much soreness. I asked about how they planned to pull me teeth to the left and right like I am expecting and they said that comes later in the treatment. They also connected the wire all the way to the back teeth which had not been done before. The right view and front view of my teeth at 5-6 weeks looks beautiful from a slight distance, but very close up you can still see bunching up of the front teeth that are still slightly sitting on the two neighboring teeth. This will not change until my teeth are pulled to the left and right. With the new wire I did feel a pulling that is slightly making spaces in my front teeth and causing wide uneven spaces and great movement in all directions on my left side. The left side is a real mess. The right side of my teeth look great. My teeth are sore all the way around. I can feel the pressure. The Orthodontic office has ice cream for all patients and at first I thought that was wonderful but strange to offer ice cream in a dental office. On my first visit I forgot to get my ice cream on the way out and regretted it all the way home! This follow-up visit I remember to get my ice cream fudge bar. As I ate it on the way home. A light bulb went off and I knew why the Orthodontic office might offer ice cream. The cold bars feel so great on your gums. It's like heaven to sore gums. And it taste really good too! Other than that the best things I got was the new Ultra Waterpik Water Flosser. It's like a shower massage to your teeth and gums. It feels so great that each time the water runs out. I am like, "Hey, I am not done yet." It makes my whole mouth feel so clean and healthy.

Who would have imagined it's so difficult to move...

Who would have imagined it's so difficult to move the front teeth? Then I realized my teeth are Bell- shaped & and very rounded on the sides - this contributes to the sitting on each side of the neighboring teeth. Most people have square teeth...

About 2 ft away from me during regular conversation people say I have beautiful teeth now, but up closer than that they are still bunched up.

My Dental Insurance has faithfully paid their portion. This is good.

I know you will think this is crazy. I had no...

I know you will think this is crazy. I had no real idea about how braces are put on the teeth. I always imagined that each tooth had it's own full circle band completely around it. I imagined that each tooth could then individually be tweaked like peeling back a sardine can. This was my great vision of how each of my teeth would be strategically moved. I did NOT imagine that a tiny bracket is just glued to the front of each tooth and one wire sort of wrangles or squeezes the teeth into alignment as a group. Hmmmm, this seems like a long process that gives me anxiety. With each Orthodontic visit, a thicker wire will be put on that puts pressure on all of the teeth at once. I'm still weary about how they can pull certain teeth to the left of right. I think my fantasy idea of moving teeth sounded better and more efficient. I know that later rubber bands and other devices can pull certain teeth and the glued on brackets can be spaced to pull in certain directions. I really don't understand it. In the beginning stages. I have lots of anxiety. I do like the way it is pushing my teeth down. I always hated having a slanted outward bite. You know...the slightly buck tooth, or bunched up in the front teeth. I used to look at people with the obviously you've had braces teeth that were slanted perfectly downward and dream of those teeth. Right now I am only concerned with how they are going to pull my teeth to the left and right...because right now in the beginning stage at first the ceramic braces wire pushed them together and my neighboring tooth to my front teeth actually started to slip behind the top front tooth, then it started widely spacing them. My front teeth actually lifted up and that felt scary, but then I didn't panic because I know the initial adjustment always screws up the teeth to loosen them before any real adjustment occurs. I also think it's never too late to fix your teeth...now 40-50-60 is young. People are still dressing sexy, it's not like the old days. And people do notice your teeth. I wish you the best. Both Invisalign and Ceramic do help align.

I just had my 12 - 13 week follow-up. My...

I just had my 12 - 13 week follow-up. My adjustment was just a thicker wire, no other adjustments. At this stage my teeth are an awful mess of my teeth being pulled in all directions and wide spacing. I have not posted follow-up photos but will try to do this in a couple of days. I asked Dr. Bhagia when my front teeth will start to be pushed back into the spaces that have now developed on each side? He said, right now we are only disentangling the roots and probably on the 3rd adjustment and following ones we will start to push back or turn certain teeth. The visit was good and I sort of expected this. There was very little discomfort this adjustment and I wondered if that was because the braces were not tight enough? The tech said no, braces do not have to hurt to move the teeth. My teeth were a little sore the next day.

I want to share a story with you about feeling blessed to have the money to fix my teeth and seeing someone who couldn't fix their teeth, and having the opportunity to help someone else. A co-worker at the hospital who works a contract job had been suffering with severe abscessed teeth and a swollen face and couldn't even get treated at our ER. I remembered years ago when I, myself couldn't afford dental care and also suffered with an abscessed tooth and waited 8 hrs in our same ER and was told they could not help me. It didn't even take me a split second to tell my co-worker to go to the dentist and I would pay for her to go. In my heart, I could feel and see her pain and embarrassment, and I offered to pay for her to go and get it fixed. I haven't even finished my dental needs, like getting implants for the missing teeth I had to remove, but I couldn't stand to see a person suffer in front of me. So, I called the co-worker's supervisor and asked if her dept would let her off if I would pay for her dental emergency and they agreed to let her off that day. A co-worker overheard me and told me, "Toyya you have a heart of Gold!" Well maybe, but I was crying tears down my face remembering being in that person's same shoes, and thinking how pitiful it is that so many people can't even get dental care. Before I knew it my department chipped in on the cost and we took on this employees dental emergency cost. The employee didn't have a car, and the only dentist willing to see her on a day's notice was far away. I actually loaned the employee my car, knowing her license was revoked. I didn't care I just wanted her to get help. She ended up running over something and tearing off my muffler on the way back from the dental office. I didn't care. I was just so glad to help someone else. OMG, when the dental office called us with the bill me and other nurses had to dig out our credit cards and put several hundred dollars each on different cards. I had wanted to buy camera equipment that week for my psychic spirit photography but put it off to help someone else. It felt great. I can't do this for everyone, but I'm glad I was able to do this for even one person. If I ever won the lotto, I swear I'd create a dental charity because it hurts my heart so much to see indigent people suffer with bad teeth. One infected or decayed tooth can be horrific pain. I think schools should show kids pictures of diseased teeth, and videos of pulling teeth to scare them into brushing their teeth. We got the employee out of emergency condition. I advised her to follow up with 4C's Clinic or Sina Foundation. Two indigent or low cost clinics in Galveston County. I opted to not loan my car out again because I ended up paying her dental cost and for a new muffler too:) Still there is no greater reward than knowing you helped someone else.

I just wanted to say that Dr. Bhagia's office and...

I just wanted to say that Dr. Bhagia's office and staff are a Happy Shiny People Team. They are always over the top nice, polite and upbeat. A lot of offices could learn how to be a team from observing them. This is not a office to go to if you are a gloomy type person. I love getting ice cream after each visit. I have still never witnessed a single complaint. Even though I said I am not too fond of children they seem to control them very well. And you can see Dr. Bhagia just loves kids. He is like a big kid just talking to them and laughing and visiting with all of them. He's always dressed up and overseeing all the techs. Overall. I am always amazed by their professionalism. I'm not just saying this, it's true. This office exudes happy positive staff.

At 16 wks the ceramic braces have created wide...

At 16 wks the ceramic braces have created wide spaces between many teeth. My main reason for getting them was to widen my smile distally, and to correct how my upper front teeth always sat on the two side teeth. I always hated how they bunched up in the front. At 16 weeks they are pulled off of the neighboring (7) & (10) incisor teeth( with the very wide spaces created. The right side of my teeth are straightening g-r-e-a-t, but my left side is going to be a work in progress! I have to be careful not to spit when talking because I am not use to all these spaces. I would say that at this stage I feel awkward. I am so conscious of how my teeth look. I'm impatient. I am a little worried because all of my bottom teeth are being oddly pulled to the right. Look at the photos of 16wks and you'll see. Perhaps, the Orthodontist will later pull them straight up & down like they are supposed to be...and the bottom teeth did need a little correction. (When I first had Invisalign my bottom tooth (21) was behind the others, it corrected that, but not the tooth (22) & (23) from being slightly out of alignment) I got ceramic braces to correct all this that Invisalign didn't.) I am seeing the bottom right
(21-23) finally aligning.

I am hopeful it all turns out well. My 16 week follow-up is in a few days. I wanted to change my entire bite to correct crowding and so far it looks like that is happening. No complaints. It has not been painful. I have only spit by accident out of the spaces once while talking and promptly apologized:) I also wanted to note that when you view my cost you can not compare my case to yours. My teeth were nearly straight because I'd previously wore Invisalign, I just wanted to cosmetically change my bite and refine the teeth Invisalign didn't. Keep in mind I did extract some problem teeth and will eventually get permanent implants.

At 16 weeks it also appears that my upper front...

At 16 weeks it also appears that my upper front teeth are sort of still sticking outward now that they have been spaced out from the neighboring incisors teeth. I hope the next wires begin to push the upper front teeth inward Or back into the groove now spaced. Remember how for a while Orthodontist were heavily pulling teeth inward, well I don't want the extreme of that, but I do still hope to see the lower teeth pulled inward so that the upper teeth can lay down over them. I'll post a pic of the old inward type Orthodontics. (Does everyone know to hold the mouse over photos to read the captions?)

When you look at my beginning Invisalign Photos...

When you look at my beginning Invisalign Photos then see my teeth agressively torned apart by the Ceramic Braces and look worse...I bet some people think I have lost my mind. Well, it's scary. I would definately say that Invisalign is subtle movement and ceramic is aggressive. I knew I had to rip the teeth roots apart to re-create a wider less bunched up bite. I remember my dentist thinking I was crazy because I should be happy with the Invisalign teeth that were straight enough...but it was not my vision of how I wanted my bite to look. My primary dentist shook his head and said, "If you get Ceramic Braces then you must be thinking about changing your whole bite!" I was.

I just had my 16-17 week Orthodontist visit. This...

I just had my 16-17 week Orthodontist visit. This would be my third visit. This time the tech and the Orthodontist, Dr. Bhagia worked on my alignment. They removed some brackets and replace them in new spots, added a much thicker wire that now runs all the way to my back teeth, with a special sleeve over the wires where I had teeth pulled. They put chains on my teeth to pull them back. They kept saying it might be a little painful, but really there wasn't much discomfort at all. It was a little uncomfortable trying to pry off the old brackets, but not painful. They explained that the chain will help to close in the gaps and pull the teeth back giving me more of the look I desire. They offered to let me pick colored chains, and I like the idea, but then I started thinking that might clash with my wardrobe... and I like to match. So, to be safe I just got silver. Clear would have been nice but I heard clear can discolor with certain foods or beverages over the weeks before your new appointment. Looking at the chains in the mirror on the way home ... it really isn't bad looking. I can feel slight pressure. The staff is always very pleasant. Dr. Bhagia always oversees each alignment. I think choosing Space Center Orthodontics was worth the drove from East Galveston to Clearlake. It is worth it for the detailed care. I posted photos of the new chains.

Almost half way Done

Well, I had my 4th & 5th Orthodontic adjustment. Mostly Bhagia used what they call "chains" to try to pull the separated teeth back together after I requested that he widen my teeth distally. I did get the effect of widening. I always hated that my front teeth are so fat that they always sat on the two side teeth. I asked Dr. Bhagia to pull the side teeth away from the front teeth to give me a more widen smile. That was the result. It left wide gap spaces in most of my teeth and that was real weird at first. I had to be extra careful not to spit on people every time I talked. I also loath people's teeth with wide gaps. So this was uncomfortable at first. Thankfully the chains are slowly closing the gaps, but still leaving my smile widened like I hoped for. On the 4th and 5th visit he also used heavier wires, and heat sensitive wire that gave a greater pull on my teeth.

I was not happy that my front upper teeth seemed to still look 3-D. They did not seem pushed back enough. So it has been my constant request during visits to ask Dr. Bhagia to push my front teeth back and down. Apparently that is a difficult task. Dr. Bhagia would have to pull my lower teeth in more to allow the upper ones to be pushed down and back. On my recent adjustment he put special bends in the near wires to push on my upper teeth, he also put another chain on. I left feeling okay about most of the treatment. That was a Thursday. On Saturday, I had my first ever wire pop off. I had to make an appointment to get the back upper tooth wire put back on.

I always love talking to the Staff. Nicole the finance person is always so bubbly and sweet. Her face and teeth are just beautiful. I wanted to elaborate that when I first met her Dr. Bhagia was showing me different pictures of teeth and showed me hers and asked me if I wanted my teeth like hers...I tend to be very blantant in my awswers after spending $11,000 on braces and said outright, "No, her teeth are pretty but more bunched in the front than I want mine to be." I didn't mean something was wrong with her teeth, I just wanted to express very clearly that I like more spread out widened teeth." Nicole has beautiful teeth that Dr. Bhagia did braces on, a beautiful face and personality. I'd also like to add that the entire staff is like they have been sniffing laughing gas or taking happy pills. They are always so freaking happy and friendly it makes you wonder why other businesses aren't. Funny I was scared to go there because I am not the biggest fan of children, and this practice caters to them. I imagined that kids would be whining and unruly but every visit the kids are happy and entertained with games or by parents and staff. Dr. Bhagia is funny to watch, cause he's like a big kid himself having a ball just talking to all the kids and patients. My visits are always really professional and cordial.

Erica is my technician. She's really great. Fast and friendly and really efficient. She has those naturally straight teeth everyone wants. Well, I guess everyone is human...On my visit to re-attach the broken off wire, Ericka said she wasn't feeling too well. She still did a great job anyway, and complimented my teeth saying my braces are as clean as the day they put them on and they really appreciated working on someone with such a clean mouth and wish everyone would pay such detail to their braces, because many patients do not... I told her after spending $11,000 on my braces, I can't afford to mess my teeth up and I brush and floss and waterpic my teeth like crazy now. We were both talking alot, Erika re-attached the broken-off wire but forgot to put my chain back on and I didn't look at my teeth at the Ortho-office so when I got home and looked in the mirror the braces looked different. I called the office and told them I didn't want to drive 35 miles there and back again. So I'd wait until my next visit to get the chains put back on. I was not angry. Stuff happens, and people are human. I might ask for a mirror to check to see if everything is there next time though to save me a trip back.

I am a really unpatient worrysome person. I really want to hammer it in Dr. Bhagia's head on the next visits that I really want to aggressively push my front teeth back and down. Not slightly, really a lot. I also think the bottom middle front teeth are looking slightly crowded again. I want my bottom teeth pulled away again. I know the last visits are used to fine-tune the teeth but here in the middle I am getting nervous and anxiety about if my teeth will turn out the way I want them too.

In my opinion of both Invisalign and Ceramic Braces. Both had advantages. Invisalign moved the teeth with refined precision, but took too long to move certain cannine teeth. And it didn't really widen my teeth. Ceramic braces kind of scared me how aggressively it unrefinely moved teeth. In the beginning my teeth looked hideous with all the aggressive gaps and embarrassing spitting issues. Somewhere in the middle of Ceramic Braces I can kind of see my vision of what I wanted, but am still on the fence-line about if the final result will be accomplished.

Sorry no posted photos for now. Really they look kind of the same as last posted, too minor to post photos. I promise to add some later to show readers the results.

Almost half way done but feeling uneasy about current tooth movement

As I have always said, Dr. Bhagia's whole team is great, wonderful, cheery and that makes the visits really great...but I am having great concern about the current movement of my teeth now that I supposibly have only 4 visits left. I am unhappy that most teeth are winged or slanted too far out, and unhappy that the left uppers are bowing out. I have to start being more aggressive with telling Dr. Bhagia and his technicians that we have to get serious about the movement of my teeth and my idea of what I want for my teeth, otherwise I have wasted thousands of dollars. I do not know if all fine tuning of the teeth happens on last of final visits but it sure seems like I should start pointing out that my teeth seem to be moving in undesired positions that worry me. I have anxiety about only having 4 visits left. Here are the updated photos of my 5th Ortho visit (every 6 weeks).

Looking like the Chinese Comic with the fanned out teeth. Ha, ha, not funny.

On my 5th, 6wk Ortho visit I got a chance to really look at my teeth since the technician left the chain off. I am unhappy with the way my teeth are winging out, or fanning out to the left and right as if they are pulled distally by the bottom of the teeth or too low, instead of moving distally from the root only. I imagined they would move from the root and be straight up & down...or hope they will be fine tuned to better positions as we go along. I feel weird about my teeth at this point. I know Real Self probably doesn't like it when I post pictures of "hope to be teeth" of someone else, but a picture is better than a thousand words to show my dentist and everyone else what I mean. I also still think my front teeth appear 3D, and I want them pushed back. I keep pushing on them with my thumb, but it doesn't seem to help. Good thing I don't have any needle nose plyers cause I'd most likely try to create my own bends in the wires to speed things along the way I want them to go...My weakness is impatience. I tell Dr. Bhagia and his team my concerns but I wonder silently are they r-e-a-l-l-y listening to me? I feel panic at this stage. This is too much money to not be heard. I don't want a cookie cutter set of teeth, I have a direction of how I want them to move and a set idea of how I want them to cosmetically look.

Trying to post photos of 5th Ortho visit but experiencing problems loading them.

Love Space Center Ortho's Staff but experiencing a lot of anxieity about the timeline of the movement of my teeth.

When I decided to get Ceramic Braces after already having Invisalign I was told an estimated time frame of one year to move my teeth in my desired pattern. Looking at them on my 5th Ortho-visit looking jagged, uneven, front teeth still 3-D looking to me, and upper front teeth bowing to the left...I feel incredible anxiety that there is no way my teeth can be refined to my desired wish look within the 4 visits that I have left. I really did not want to have to wear them past one year. I really truly think that every Ortho-patient should be given a mirror on each visit to point out what is undesirable about their ongoing process. I think the Orthodontist and Technicians should do a 360 degree circled look at the patient's teeth. Stand in back of the patient and look from the forehead down, from the left of the face, then from the right of the face, then stand in front of the patient and ask them to tilt their head back and close the teeth in the natural bite position, then view the teeth from the chin up to check the alignment. In my case you can clearly see from a chin view that my teeth are severely going out of alignment. The upper teeth should nicely lay down on the bottom teeth like roof shingles. They aren't are this point. I like the bottom teeth to slant inward to allow the top teeth to nicely lay on top of them. I have been to dentist who use Ink paper and have the patient bite down on the inked paper to show if the teeth are obstructed. Has anyone ever seen Avril Levine's teeth. I like the slant. Look how great her bite is!!! Hey, Dr. Bhagia ...like this photo of Avril Levine's teeth.

I LOVE AVRIL LEVINE'S TEETH. REFERENCE THOSE.

When I decided to get Ceramic Braces after already having Invisalign I was told an estimated time frame of one year to move my teeth in my desired pattern. Looking at them on my 5th Ortho-visit looking jagged, uneven, front teeth still 3-D looking to me, and upper front teeth bowing to the left...I feel incredible anxiety that there is no way my teeth can be refined to my desired wish look within the 4 visits that I have left. I really did not want to have to wear them past one year. I really truly think that every Ortho-patient should be given a mirror on each visit to point out what is undesirable about their ongoing process. I think the Orthodontist and Technicians should do a 360 degree circled look at the patient's teeth. Stand in back of the patient and look from the forehead down, from the left of the face, then from the right of the face, then stand in front of the patient and ask them to tilt their head back and close the teeth in the natural bite position, then view the teeth from the chin up to check the alignment. In my case you can clearly see from a chin view that my teeth are severely going out of alignment. The upper teeth should nicely lay down on the bottom teeth like roof shingles. They aren't are this point. I like the bottom teeth to slant inward to allow the top teeth to nicely lay on top of them. I have been to dentist who use Ink paper and have the patient bite down on the inked paper to show if the teeth are obstructed. Has anyone ever seen Avril Levine's teeth. I like the slant. Look how great her bite is!!! Hey, Dr. Bhagia ...like this photo of Avril Levine's teeth.

Look at the slant of Avril Levine's teeth.

I just like teeth that slant inward.

After posting my update I got a phone call to come in and go over my current expectations.

Just after posting the updated review of my 5th Ortho visit, the Ortho office called me and asked if I'd make a special appointment to come in and discuss my current expectations or worries about how my teeth are moving. This will be good because I do feel there are some problems that need to be corrected. As always the team at Space Center Ortho is concerned and willing to listen to any worries.

A Butting of Heads with Dr. Bhagia

After my 5th Ortho visit the office called me in to discuss if I had issues with the movement of my teeth. I did, if you look at the photos I posted for that visit. I was not happy. I was not happy that my teeth were not pushed back more. Dr. Bhagia seemed upset at me. He sort of argued with me and said he told me he could not push my teeth back too much at the beginning of our consultation, and wondered why I was upset now. I was upset now because I felt that he could definately still push the front upper teeth back m-u-c-h more. I felt like he was not hearing what I wanted and wanted to just do what he wanted. I told him I would not be happy if he could not push them back more. I said I loved slanted down teeth like Avril Lavine's. He said he didn't like her tooth slant. We argued back and forth. He said medically a person only has so much bone for the teeth to slant and slanting them too much is unhealthy for the teeth. I said if he did not agree to push my teeth further down and back that I just wasted $4,400 on ceramic braces and I felt devastated. He told me if I was that unhappy he would give me a refund. I only owe him $200 on the balance and told him I did NOT want a refund. I wanted my idea of beautiful teeth. That may not be his or anyone else's but all my life I hated the prominent projection of my upper front teeth. This was the one thing I loathed each and everytime I looked into a mirror and for me the only cure is pushing those teeth way back. I left upset. I chose not to write my review then because a review is never good to write when you are angry. I agreed to come back to Dr. Bhagia's office in 4 weeks for a follow-up imagining that we would still be in a deadlock and I wasted $4,400 and there was little I could do...

My 6th Ortho visit was uncertain. Wondering if I'd Butt heads or compromise?

I went in as scheduled. Dr. Bhagia was friendlier. He pointed out that some of the reason my teeth had looked bowed out to the left on the 5th Ortho visit was because they were pulling all those teeth to the right to align the center spaces of my lower and upper teeth. He said he thought about what I said the last visit and although he might not be able to medically push my teeth back as far as I wish he would certainly try to push them back much more, because customer service is valued and the customers idea is important,and now he had a better understanding of what I want him to do. So on this visit they shaved some of my fatter teeth on the lower teeth to bring them back and in more to enable my upper front teeth to be pushed back. They put chains on under the wire, (instead of over the wire like before) to really pull on the teeth. Wow, did I feel the pull. I asked them to get aggressive and pull them back and push them down and I could feel that they listened. I could feel my teeth crackle under the pressure. My gums were very sore but I left with a satisfaction that Dr. Bhagia did finally listen to me and respect my wishes. I tried to upload current photos but could not on this day. I promise to do so later.

Arguments about what I wanted vs. Dr. Bhagia's idea, Me over reacting, and Coming to agreement.

Well, I had a difficult time trying to convince Dr. Bhagia that I would not be happy unless he slanted my teeth straight down. He was concerned that slanting them too much was not healthy. At one point he didn't tell me that he was going to extremely contort all of my teeth to one side to move certain teeth and they looked like a declining staircase. On that day he had also done some small spacing filing or drilling and I did not look at my teeth till I got home and then when I say all of my teeth looked crooked I accused him of shaving them uneven!!! He emailed me and told me I was overreacting, he did not shave them that way he slanted them that way near the end to move certain teeth. We agreed at the end that from now on he will explain something so extreme before he surprises me. I have not posted that photo. It's too ugly. But here's some progress. Now they are looking slanted down and looking beautiful. Hope you like them.
Houston Orthodontist

Word of mouth.

5 out of 5 stars Overall rating
5 out of 5 stars Doctor's bedside manner
5 out of 5 stars Answered my questions
5 out of 5 stars After care follow-up
5 out of 5 stars Time spent with me
5 out of 5 stars Phone or email responsiveness
5 out of 5 stars Staff professionalism & courtesy
5 out of 5 stars Payment process
5 out of 5 stars Wait times
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