Facing a Future with Braces: 4 Common Misconceptions People Have about Braces

20 April 2017
 Categories: Dentist, Blog


For centuries, human beings have been plagued by crooked teeth. During this time, countless dentists have sought a simple but effective means of straightening crooked teeth. An Ancient Roman physician by the name of Aulus Cornelius Celsus recommended that parents ensure their children's teeth grew straight by applying daily pressure to new teeth using a finger, and Egyptians used catgut wiring to straighten teeth!

However, today, dentistry no longer needs to employ such impractical methods. Nowadays, after decades of trial and error, braces are the ultimate teeth straightening tool. Unfortunately, despite their obvious benefits, some people are still a little apprehensive about getting braces. There are several misconceptions regarding braces, each of which will be addressed here.

Braces are Unhygienic

When you sign up to get braces, you have to be prepared to double your oral hygiene efforts. This doesn't mean that braces themselves are unhygienic; it simply means that you now have to be more diligent when cleaning your teeth.

Yes, food particles will cling to your braces after meals, but then the same thing happens to teeth without braces. If you double your oral hygiene effort after getting braces, your oral health will be fine.

Braces Give You Bad Breath

Allowing food particles and bacteria to build up on your braces will, unsurprisingly, lead to bad breath. After all, bacteria produce gases like sulphur, and this leads to bad breath. As long as you clean your braces and teeth thoroughly after each meal, as well as at the usual times, your breath will not suffer.

Braces Make You Look Ugly

Although braces do alter your appearance slightly, this change doesn't have to mean that you will become unattractive. Smiling, whether with braces or not, makes you and everyone else around you feel better. It also makes you more attractive.

If after getting braces you smile less and cover your mouth in an effort to shield your braces, then you are essentially making yourself appear less attractive. Smile more, be expressive, even with braces, and you'll see that you can be attractive, even with braces.

People Won't be Attracted to You

According to a recent study, 38 percent of Americans might lose interest in someone with crooked teeth after a first date. Furthermore, the same study showed that people with straight teeth were 57 percent more likely to have success on a dating site than those with crooked teeth, when judged on their picture.

These statistics are important because they show that if you decide not to get braces and instead spend your life with crooked teeth, you may have difficulty when it comes to courtship. However, if you choose to spend 6-24 months straightening your teeth with braces, while showing your smile regardless, not only will you and those around you feel better, but you will also fair better with dating once your braces are removed.

There are Alternatives to Traditional Braces

If the thought of getting a traditional metal brace is too much for you, there are other, less intrusive orthodontic appliances. Invisalign aligners are invisible and removable. Lingual braces straighten teeth out of sight, and ceramic braces are an invisible version of traditional braces.

Talk to your orthodontist about the options. Together, you can work out something that is both effective and discreet.

Don't let these common misconceptions concerning braces give you second thoughts. After all, you have more control over how they affect your life than you think. For 6-24 months, which is the average length of time it takes to straighten teeth with traditional braces, you will need to adapt. However, when you finally remove your braces to be greeted with your newer, straighter smile, you'll realize you made the right choice, one that will positively affect the rest of your life.