Woman Mercilessly Bullied For Her Large Chin Is Now Unrecognizable After Surgery
Birth defects affect millions of people around the world. While many of them are quirks that can be embraced, others cause an insurmountable pain, and, if they are physically noticeable, can lead to bullying which results in lasting psychological trauma.
This was the case for 20-year-old Lauren Whitt from Colorado, who was born with a particularly large chin.
Check out the video below where Whitt explains how the deformity blighted her life:
Whitt's chin not only caused her physical pain, but it inspired cruel adolescents to bully her throughout middle and high school for being different. Things got so bad that she was forced to finish high school online because it was too traumatic for her to go into class.
Those who bullied Whitt called her a "witch" and "ugly" because of her pronounced chin.
In an attempt to combat the problem, she was moved to another school in the hope that the students there wouldn't be so cruel, but it did nothing to stop the incessant bullying. As a result, she had to complete her final two years of high school online.
When she was 12 years old, Whitt was told by an orthodontist that the only way she was going to have the problem fixed would be major surgery. At the time, the prospect of surgery was too much for her to bear, so she decided against it.
Over the next three years, Whitt's condition rapidly deteriorated.
Eight years on from being told that surgery was her only option, she has finally had the procedure. It was carried out four months ago and involved having both of her jaws broken and put back together with a staggering 36 screws and bone grafted from her chin.
Now, Whitt is now able to eat without trouble, and it has already made the lisp she suffered from disappear.
The 20-year-old, who is now a criminal justice student, said, "I could not live life like that any longer. It was making me miserable. I waited until I was an adult to get the surgery because I did not want to go through something so painful as a kid."
"I hadn't been able to bite into anything properly since I was a kid. I felt constant pain in my jaw every single day."
"I had a lot of trouble breathing and it kept getting worse. It got to the point that I couldn't breathe without my mouth being open," she continued. "My speech therapist told me that my lisp could not be fixed through speech therapy. I noticed shortly after the surgery that it was gone."
"I was brutally bullied for years because of the way I looked, so this is a major confidence booster."
Fixing Whitt's jaw was not simply a case of having surgery, either. Prior to having the operation four months ago, she wore Invisalign for nine months to straighten her teeth. These clear braces meant that she was in even more pain.
"Preparing for it was one of the most difficult parts," she said. "The Invisalign caused even more pain and made it nearly impossible for me to chew. I lost eight pounds and before the surgery, and I was already thin."
For most people, the procedure Whitt underwent takes four hours, but her condition was so severe that it took a surgeon nine hours to complete.
"My surgeon told me that my underbite was the most severe he had ever seen," Whitt revealed. "He said that this was one of the most complicated surgeries of his career."
Recovering from the surgery was no mean feat for Whitt. She suffered complications when the bone grafting failed, resulting in an infection. The 20-year-old then had to recover and have this part of the surgery redone.
Sadly, the bone grafting failed a second time, and it wasn't until she had the procedure a third time that it was successful.
But even then, she was not completely out of the woods. The trauma the procedures caused to her mouth resulted in one of her teeth dying, and she had to have her gums cut into in order to save it.
Thankfully, the 20-year-old is now on the mend, and, after spending six weeks on a liquid diet, she is only able to eat when her food is cut up into bite-sized pieces.
"It's going to be pretty cool when I'm finally able to eat a burger again without cutting it up," she said.
Even though she suffered a lot because of the corrective surgery, Whitt said that it was worth the pain, and she is now recommending that other people in her position consider having it done.
"It's been my most awful and most rewarding experience so far," she said. "Anyone considering this surgery should do it because it can change your life."
We would like to wish Whitt all the best with her continued recovery.