do you feel about yourself now that you have braces? Your
The Forgotten Audience
of brochures and websites are written for kids and teenagers
who get braces. After all, their budding egos are easily
bruised. But what about us? Just because we're "grown
up" doesn't mean we don't feel weird about wearing braces
or headgear! We must go to work each day and deal with
the reactions of other adults, and the realities,
inconveniences, and pressures of adult life.
we supposed to just ignore the fact that this is a big deal
for us? Well heck no! Listen, this is a major change in your appearance, and it can be quite uncomfortable.
You are entitled to feel weird about it!
the emails that other adults have sent me, I have found that
men tend to feel dorky or geeky with braces. Women tend to
feel either unattractive or teenage-cute. Either way you slice
it, it spells: Self-conscious! Some adults don't
care what other people think. If that describes you, then
you've cleared a major hurdle.
don't let this freak you out too much. The braces are a big
deal for you, because they are in your mouth and you deal with
them 24/7. But others barely notice. Sure, it's a conversation
piece for about two seconds. After that, others don't really
want to talk about it (unless they went through it themselves
and want to share their experiences).
many people (both adults and children) have braces these days,
it's becoming more common. According to the American
Association of Orthodontists, more than a million adults in
North America have braces! Consider this:
adults wore braces as kids
adults have kids who are (or were) in braces
adults think about getting braces themselves
short, I think that most adults are sympathetic, particularly
if you must wear headgear. They realize that you are doing
something positive to improve your appearance. Maybe they even
envy you for taking a proactive role.
in case you didn't know about this, here's something else to
consider: some adults have a fetish for braces and headgear.
That's right, some adults, world-wide, find braces erotic, and
even go to the trouble of having "fake" braces and
headgear made for themselves. They envy that you have the real
thing, and think that you look sexy and incredible in your
braces. Think about that that next time you feel dorky!
consider this, as well: Tom Cruise has
braces a few years ago. And many female stars have worn them, too, such as
Gwen Stefani and Cher!
Prepared for Questions
how do you deal with other people's reactions to your new
metal mouth? Your close friends, your spouse, or other
important people in your life know you have braces. Your
business associates don't. Sooner or later, you'll open your
mouth and they'll react.
best way to get through this, is to plan ahead. Visualize that
important meeting. How do you want to handle it? What will you
say? A little forethought will help you quickly get through
many awkward moments.
the Braces Come Off and the Retainers Go On