THE BRACE FACE EXPERIENCE

BY SABRINA BURKHOLDER

Having braces is not something most teenagers look forward to. But when taken care of correctly the process of braces is not as bad as it seems. The most important part of making the process easier is proper hygiene. By flossing and brushing my teeth and braces several times a day, I was able to prevent cavities during the process and could enjoy my new smile once the braces came off. Flossing is done by using something called a floss threader, which you can find with other dental care products in stores. The threader allows you to take the floss up and behind the braces to floss, which is extremely important to make sure you are stimulating the gum tissues between your teeth. When having braces a lot of foods have to be cut out of your diet to avoid staining and breaking a bracket. Popcorn – one of my favorite snacks in the world – was one of the restricted foods, so instead of snacking on that I found other things such as pretzels or some Ritz crackers to satisfy my snack cravings.

I was never happy about getting braces, but I knew that after the 15-month course of having them, I would have a beautiful smile. In the end, it was absolutely worth it. Now I am always careful to wear my retainer at night to maintain the movement, because teeth will try to move back. Having braces once was enough for me!