Dr. Charles shares his experience with braces
Growing up as the son of an orthodontist, I knew from a very young age that if my teeth grew into my mouth crooked, my dad was going to put braces on them. Sure enough, my teeth grew into my mouth twisted, jagged and extremely “bucked.” At the age of 11, my father told me that it was time to start my orthodontic journey. This journey could not have come at a better time for me because a couple of my really good friends from school would tease me about my teeth. While the teasing didn’t bother me too much, I was glad it was not going to go on much longer.
I was definitely a little scared for my first appointment, but it was very comforting to know that my dad was nearby watching over me and doing a lot of the work. Sure enough, getting my braces put on my teeth was rather simple. I had to bite on a special plastic instrument a number of times and stay very still. Unfortunately, the hard part did not start until after I ate dinner at home. My parents tell me that I locked myself in my room and I did not come out for a few days. My teeth were very sore and it hurt to talk. Luckily, after 3 days I was feeling much better. Knowing what I know now, my advice to anyone getting braces would be to relax and take plenty of Tylenol and ibuprofen.
As you might be able to see from my photo, colored braces had been invented prior to me getting my braces on. My teeth went from very crooked to very “cool” overnight. I still remember the first colors I chose for my braces. I chose purple and gold to show off my “Lakers Pride”. However, I felt the most pride the day my braces were removed which marked the end my orthodontic journey (at least I thought it was the end). I was given the gift of straight teeth and now I am lucky enough to give this wonderful gift to all of my patients. While my journey is far from over, I always enjoy watching my patients come to the end of their orthodontic journey with a smile on their face.