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So I’m getting braces

I think the prospect of adult braces is the reason I’ve kept going with my horrible teeth for so long. My teeth are all out of sorts. I have an underbite, I have eye teeth behind my front teeth—the whole shebang. My bottom set is all over the place. They’ve screwed up my smile my entire adult life, but the idea of being laughed at for being “that guy” in the office who went out and got braces was just too humiliating.

You see, I grew up poor, and my parents didn’t have the money to give me braces when everyone else had them. I do have the money now, and I have had for some time, thanks to some savings on my parents’ part, some hard work, and some luck, but I just haven’t had the courage to go through with it.

Which is why I am super happy about Invisalign. I found out about this from a rare trip to the dentist (another thing I avoid for similar reasons). My dentist actually sat me down and gave me a talk about my teeth. I guess teeth as messed up as mine are a health risk. Bacteria gets trapped, and that causes all sorts of nasty problems. I’ve had far more cavities than most people my age, and the reason apparently is my screwed up teeth.

Anyway, the point is, he told me about this Invisalign thing where teeth get adjusted with invisible, or nearly so, braces. No metal. Sure, you can tell really up close something is there, but your mouth isn’t glaring off of every lamp every time you smile.

I’m getting fitted this week, and I have to say, I’m pretty excited. As excited as someone can be for what will likely be a painful and long process. I hear adult braces are much worse because the mouth has already set in place. This is not going to be a fun couple of year, but in the end, I’m going to get a nice set of teeth out of it, healthier teeth, better-looking teeth, and I won’t have to be embarrassed about the process.

I don’t mean for this to sound like an advertisement. I don’t know if Invisalign is right for anybody else. There may be downsides (I’ll try to write more about later if that’s the case), and it may not be as effective. I don’t know anything about it really, but just the prospect is such a relief, I can’t wait to get started.

I really think that in this country, if you don’t have good teeth, you’re almost certain to struggle more in life than those who do. We live so much on smiles. They mean so much to Americans. I think this choice not only is going to help my mouth, but also my career.

But that’s a bit down the line, for now, I have an appointment with the dentist to fix these teeth.

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