Getting your braces means getting used to seeing a different version of you in the mirror. Many of you won’t take issue with your new look — after all, it’s improving your smile everyday — but some newcomers aren’t as quick to embrace the brace.
For those in column B, we’ve put together the best tips on how to take the edge off. From styles to servicing, hardware to habits, these are the best ways to make your braces less noticeable.
We’ll start with the big guns. The most popular form of low-visibility orthodontic correction right now is clear aligners.
When choosing braces, you can choose from every colour in the rainbow. Variety is good but think long and hard about your decision. If you’re the type who doesn’t want to draw attention to your new look, maybe a fluoro pink isn’t the way to go. When in doubt, opt for the least noticeable colour, or one that matches the type of braces you wear.
One of the first thing you’ll notice when you get braces is that your smile will feel different. This is something you’ll get used to — you just have to practice! Look in the mirror and try a range of smiles. Once you’ve got your best one locked, it’s time to get to work. Smiling often will train the 17 muscles you can use to smile, and make it feel more natural.
If you’re wondering how to hide braces, a great way is to accentuate your other features. If you wear makeup, accenting your eyes and keeping eye contact will keep people engaged when you speak. Likewise, taking care of your lips with a sunscreen balm will keep your lips healthy, causing no undue reason to linger on your mouth.
If you can’t get clear aligners, you’ve still got options for ‘regular’ braces. Ceramic braces are popular for their colour and soft features that blends in well with your teeth. You might even be a candidate for lingual braces, which sit on the insides of your teeth and are rarely seen at all.
Bad dental hygiene draws attention to your mouth when you don’t have braces, so imagine when you do. Some easy tips here are to brush and floss regularly to keep your mouth free of debris and stay away from foods like popcorn or toffee — believe us, they can be more trouble than they’re worth.
Also try to stay away or minimise eating foods that can stain your ceramic braces or aligners, such as coffee, tea, red wine, curry… etc. If you are a smoker, it’s also a good time to give up smoking as cigarettes or tobaccos can stain ceramic braces or aligners.
Besides the excuse to grin like an idiot all day exercising your cheeks, this one is our favourite. You’re going to have your braces for a long time, so you might as well embrace them! Becoming confident with your braces will take time, but a good way to fast track the process is to get back out into the world and socialise normal.
Read more on how to wear your braces with confidence.
The best place to start is by getting in touch with your local orthodontist using our finder. They’ll be happy to give personalised advice on any of the above topics.