The Road to an Alternating and Reciprocal Warrior: Wisdom Teeth Extraction

This spans an entire treatment over a year’s time.

Here’s part 1

Part 2

Part 3

The Saga Continues

I’ve been through vision, I’ve had dental integration, I’ve put in the PRI activity homework, maximized my PRI testing, and feel a new man.

I know frontal plane
I know AF IR

Yet neutrality eludes me. It is a state of mind I could once feel by the power of glasses and splints, but the nervous system learns and accommodates. I topped out.

But of course, I knew that would be the case from my very first session with Ron.

“You gotta get those wisdom teeth pulled.” ~Ron Hruska

By virtue of the dentist I integrate with, the time came. And here are the results.

Extract time.
Extract time.

Zac B.E. (Before Extraction)

So at this point in my life the large HRV gains I initially had were dropping and I was still having some neck tension. Training was feeling so-so.

Test-wise, the videos below show what I look like.

Here’s my squat

And my toe touch.

Upper quadrant tests

And lower quadrant tests

Mandibular movements

And some cervical movements

My pelvis is consistently neutral and I can shift and squat with the best of ‘em. But I still present with restrictions in my thorax, neck, and mandible (BBC/RTMCC).

These limitations are likely present because of a  bony block called wisdom teeth.

The enemy reveals himself
The enemy reveals himself

As you can see, the maxillary (top side) wisdom teeth limit the excurision of my lateral pterygoids for lateral trusive movements. My hope is by removing these guys I will get access to more frontal plane, which should clean, up my remaining tests.

Operation Extraction: 1/30/15

By the way, 3D CT machines are the coolest thing out there. Definitely putting on my amazon wishlist.
By the way, 3D CT machines are the coolest thing out there. Definitely putting on my amazon wishlist.

I enter the room to get prepped for surgery, and the worst possible thing occurs.

Country music is playing.

7529bed6557dc022221851f82c0a8a52
Immediate amygdala hijack

And I can’t have that!

So I politely ask one of the workers there if we can play something a bit more soothing prior to my surgery.

2pac “I ain’t Mad at Cha” begins playing.

That’s more like it.

Could not think of a better way to reduce threat.
Could not think of a better way to reduce threat.

I get the IV put in, hear some Juicy by Biggy, and pass out from the Mind Eraser anesthesia. Yes, it was actually called “Mind Eraser”, and yes, I remember nothing.

Like this happening

Evidently I really wanted this picture taken
Evidently I really wanted this picture taken

And definitely not this

But I do remember looking like Marlon Brando for a period of time

What was really cool about the whole experience is how little pain I felt. I probably took 2-3 pain pills at most. I think this is because I was actually excited about having this surgery done, and the reward I was hoping to get far exceeded the nociceptive information I would inevitably receive.

Just goes to show it’s all about threat perception.

#explaindentistry Should I pitch this to Adriaan?
#explaindentistry
Should I pitch this to Adriaan?

Zac A.E. (After Extraction)

I waited to re-measure and assess until 6 weeks later. This way I had to some time to heal and adjust to this new sensory experience. My exercise program basically consisted of squatting, alteranting activity, and mandibular lateral trusion to feel my pterygoids.

The cons are I no longer looking like Marlon Brando, but the pro’s are the mobility gains. Check it out in the vids below.

Here are the standing tests

My upper quadrant tests

Lower quadrant tests

Here are my mandibular movements

And lastly, cervical

Since surgery I’ve been hovering between a right BC and superior T4. I consider myself no longer a TMCC patient because mandibular movement is now fully restored. The thorax position can limit cervical axial rotation.

In terms of how I feel, neck tension has been significantly reduced, especially with jaw movement. The only time I get the tension is when I am training hard or if I am reading/sitting for a real long time.

I also produce a crap-ton more saliva, which comes back to the very first question Ron asked me when I started this process. You don’t know what this stuff will affect.

Me like all the time now
Me like all the time now

Consequently, I have noticeably much more phlegm in my saliva and feel way more congested than ever. Sleep quality does not seem as good, as I have generally felt a bit more tired throughout the day.

So what gives? My thought was the wisdom teeth would be the final piece of my PRI quest, but I did not get all the changes I was hoping to get. Was Ron wrong? Did I get less wise for nothing?

I did not lose my wit and charm though. Sorry Ron, better luck next time.
I did not lose my wit though. Sorry Ron, better luck next time.

The one consistent thing that I am still limited in is the cervical rotation and shoulder horizontal abduction. I am hesitant to perform any pec inhibitory activities because I have been neutral in the past. I don’t want to “stretch” something that doesn’t need stretching.

I look over my 3D CT scan that I got at the dentist office, and one thing stands out. I find my limiting factor:

Not your run-of-the-mill tissue extensibility dysfunction
Not your average tissue extensibility dysfunction

The journey continues.