I still don't know for sure. But I do know that these suffocating, humiliating rubber bands are an indication that my treatment is nearly over. Yay for that!
So the rubber bands are forcing my teeth and jaw to line up correctly so I don't have any misalignment problems in the future. No TMJ.
The first several days was really frustrating. I cried sad, sorry tears for myself. I also had to go see my chiropractor to help heal me from major migraines and neck and back pain. I had to start taking daily doses of magnesium to calm my muscle spasms.
But then, like anything else difficult in life, I got over it. Now I'm totally used to putting on and taking off my rubber bands all day, everyday, between meals, before bed, after breakfast, and so on...
I'm supposed to be wearing them 24/7 except for when I eat. I think I've been wearing them probably 75% of the time, which is probably more than he expects. (I think they probably plan ahead for the slackers, which is why I have to wear them for so long.)
I'm not positive, but I'm hoping that I get these off in January.
It's been an interesting adventure having braces in my adult years--(definitely something I never thought I'd do) but I'm grateful nonetheless for the opportunity to get my health issues taken care of. I keep thinking that if it was 100 years ago I'd be walking around with a missing tooth, and well, I'd just have to get over it.