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A pain in the mouth

One out of three children or teenagers will have to live through their "rites of passage

years" as a prisoner of their own orthodonist. Puberty is burdened enough by zit and acne

battles, awkward growth spurts, and raging evil hormones. Braces add additional torture

to this already hellish time to both parent and child. A life with braces is far more

humilating, painful, and expensive than living with buck teeth, gaps, or a snarled tooth.

Mental scars remain long after cuts and bloody sores in the mouth have healed. These

platinum-colored shackles come with a factory full of degrading insults and nicknames. All

through school one can expect to be called brace-face, tractor teeth, and metal mouth. The

orthadontically challenged are always the butt of electricity and lip-locking jokes. The

orthodontist's office is also a source of embarrassment. Most offices are open-air, filled

with other patients. This means an audience as the nurse stretches and pulls patient's

mouths in Jim Carrey-like expressions. If one should forget to brush their teeth before

their visit, they will regrettably become immortal as the doctor announces the left-over

remains of Taco Bell in-between molars.Braces become a constant source of


Braces are three years of physical torture beginning with the very first office visit. The

application of the brackets itself is long, tedious, and uncomfortable. First, cold, polydent

flavored clay is thrust into the crevices of the mouth, forcing imprints. Jagged metal

squares are glued to the enamel, forcing hot, burning, glue to drip down the pink of the

gums. Braces also cause everyday aches and pains in the mouth. Metal spokes, guiding

teeth to a new shape, stab the inside of the mouth causing cuts, sores,and tearing each

time a person's mouth opens. Rubber bands placed on top of brackets pull and stretch

teeth until gums are tender and sore. Being born with unperfect teeth can be painful!

Braces hurt parents' wallets well after the metal is scraped and chiseled off. Payments

while braces are being worn are very overwhelming. The average cost of braces today is

around 3,000 dollars, more for specialty kinds. Patients must also pay for damages they

ininflic ii inflict upon their orthodontic work. There are also other expenses after the metal

inflict upon their orthodontic work. Molar bands that are pryed off can cost as much as

fifteen dollars apiece. There are also other expenses after the matal has been removed.

Hated retainers often have to be bought and worn at night. Expensive details such as teeth

cleaning and bleaching are nessacery to remove stains and stubborn glue. These additional

expenses added to the original costs can mean a huge debt to parents.

Braces can be both a parents' and child's worst nightmare. One can only hope that

modern medical techniques will spread to the orthodontic world where appearance, pain,

and cost are a problem.

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