Satisfaction after braces...

If you have finished with your orthodontic treatment and are wearing retainers (or will be soon), this is a special place to connect with others in your (enviable) situation. Ask a question or make a comment about life post-braces.

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Satisfaction after braces...

#1 Post by Guest » Mon Nov 22, 2004 1:38 am

Y'know, I've looked at many amazing pictures throughout all of my braces research and the websites show some great ones. I remember when my last friends got their braces off, some of them had some great smiles after. Overall though, I got to thinking, of all the people that I know have had braces... how many of them actually have great smiles? Not that many. They are far from bad smiles, but I can only think of two friends who have very straight, very nice looking teeth, and only once in my life have I been set back by how perfect someone's teeth were. So my point is... do you guys feel like your teeth are perfect now, after braces? Do you now have great smiles? Maybe if you could rate yourself from 1-10? Do any people come out of braces and just have maybe 6s? I was looking at my top teeth and they have changed a ton since I got braces, in a very short time too, but I realized, they are pretty straight now, but it's not like I love them. And there's only a little more change expected up there... So in the end am I just gonna be "okay" with my teeth? I know one way or another, in the end, i'll be like "Well, it was worth it because they look better than before..." but I'm afraid that I'll force myself to settle on a less than great smile just because I spent so much money and so much time trying to get there. So reiterating my main question... did your braces bring you as far as you had hoped they would?

I'm just feeling a little like just a small amount of improvement may not be worth all this trouble and money and I would really like to hear some honest opinions of people done w/ their treatment.

-Filup

Dea
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Satisfaction

#2 Post by Dea » Mon Nov 22, 2004 7:56 am

If I could return to pre-braces--and know what I know now--I would not get braces. The improved smile is not worth the major gum loss I have experienced. My gum problems now are more threatening than the crooked teeth and gum pockets I had before braces.

Princess
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#3 Post by Princess » Mon Nov 22, 2004 8:10 am

Personally, I wouldn't want to do it all again, but I'm certainly glad I did. My teeth were not all that bad. In fact, most people said they never really noticed that my teeth were crooked and wondered why I even got braces. I've started whitening them now and I think they're looking great. But each person has to decide for themselves whether or not it's worth it. And yes...I think braces brought me to where I wanted (and expected) to be. I never expected "movie star" teeth. Their's have been bonded, veneered and everything else they could think of. I just wanted a nice, straight, white smile. And I got that. I'm sorry you may be disappointed in the results after all this work - not to mention the money! You may have gone into this with higher expectations than I did. Hopefully, though, once they come off, you'll be happy that it's over (but also happy that you did it). Most people are happy that they went through it but wouldn't want to do it again!

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#4 Post by Jennifer N » Mon Nov 22, 2004 1:26 pm

I find my results to be highly disappointing. My front teeth don't even look straight. I feel so mislead. I feel that my orthodontist had an obligation to let me know just how compromised the final result would be. My two front teeth in particular are shaped differently but I wasn't aware of it at all because of the way that they were positioned. I had no idea it would look the way that it does. (The backs of my upper front teeth are especially appalling. Fortunately it doesn't look as bad from the front).

If I knew then, what I know now I never would have committed to 2 and a half years in braces. It so wasn't worth it. I think braces for 6 months to a year would be gotten me about the same end result with a whole lot less money and frustration.

My dental hygienist told me that my teeth would be perfect after braces. What a joke. My teeth only look good if you don't look too closely. That is not good enough. I feel as though I only got partial treatment with poor results.

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Dodger(UK)
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#5 Post by Dodger(UK) » Mon Nov 22, 2004 1:26 pm

Braces for me have very much improved my smile, and given me added lip support, I now have a more shaped looking arches, were before they were all up and down and crazy paving like... :lol:

..but I know what you mean, you, yourself are you biggest crytic, and I think my teeth will never be perfect like 'Halle Berry's' for example..

...but then again I'm not sure I want them to be perfect because I want to retain some individual character to them, that uniquely identifies your teeth. If we all had them 'Hollywood Glitzy' styled, then we'd all look the same. :wink:

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#6 Post by drrick » Mon Nov 22, 2004 1:31 pm

halle berry has veneers
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teeth_runner
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#7 Post by teeth_runner » Tue Nov 23, 2004 1:13 pm

really??? Halle Berry

I always wondered who had veneers..I know Cher does

If you want the movies star look and you don't have the teeth for that - veneers are the way...but that's a total different topic

Princess
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#8 Post by Princess » Tue Nov 23, 2004 1:56 pm

Not only is that a different topic, it's probably for people unlike ourselves, who have a $1,000 or more to spend on each tooth! I'll settle for just being me! Our smiles, while not perfect, have character! And that makes us who we are!!!

smile
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#9 Post by smile » Tue Nov 23, 2004 7:54 pm

This crossed my mind also.. I just remembered how many of my peers have had braces and I don't think they're teeth are Wow! now. Ya know? It just seems normal? I mean, I would haven't guessed they did something more to their teeth to get it looking like that.. (if that makes any sense) -shrug- But, then again, I'm very hopeful and I feel that I will get the results I'm looking for since I didn't go into this only for straight teeth - but for a normal profile [with surgery] so I think my efforts will be worth it. We shall see.

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#10 Post by Paparazzi » Mon Nov 29, 2004 1:24 pm

I would have to say mine are wow. On a scale of 1-10 I am a 10. That's probably cause my ortho took a hell of a lot of time and is a perfectionist.

Wendy
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#11 Post by Wendy » Fri Dec 03, 2004 9:12 am

Mine look rubbish, wish I hadn't bothered. I have one tooth that is the 'wrong shape' and my ortho refused to slenderise it so I still have a huge gap between it and my right incisor. I wasn't told of this problem before I started treatment. I have had a relapse between my two front teeth, even though I had a fixed retainer (it bacame loose one Friday night and I couldn't get to the ortho till Monday morning), so my right hand side front tooth has relapsed to its old wonky position and the fixed retainer is visible through the gap. I am still left with a rather unsightly overjet and my front teeth do not fit together properly when I bite down. All in all a complete waste of money, time and effort. I am going back next week to be fitted with a hawley retainer to try and close the gap, although I am not convinced that this will also pull my wonky tooth back into the correct position.

Hey ho...maybe take a leaf out of Hallie Berry's book and just get veneers!

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Chris
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#12 Post by Chris » Fri Dec 03, 2004 8:09 pm

I'm curious about those of you who are disatisfied with the final results. What exactly did your orthodontist say when they removed them ("thats all I can do for you"?) Was there anything else that the ortho recommended to improve the outcome?
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Danny
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#13 Post by Danny » Sat Dec 04, 2004 4:37 am

Wow, so much negativity. I am sorry that some of you are not happy with your smile and your ortho. I know how dissapointing that must be, but please try to remember there are lot's of people out here who are just starting out and are scared and uncertain already. I am sure that cases of people who are happy far outway those who are not.
BE HAPPY!
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Wendy
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#14 Post by Wendy » Sat Dec 04, 2004 5:25 am

My ortho said that he was happy with the result and that if I had any problems I was to pop back in and see him. He said that nothing else could be done to correct the gap and the new gap that formed between my two front teeth happened after treatment had finished. As far as he is concerned he had done a good job. Needless to say I wont be recommending him to any of my friends.

I am sure that many patients are happy with their results, maybe I'm too much of a perfectionist. I'll try and post piccies of my finished results so you can make your own mind up if I can work out how to use this damn digital camera!
:D

Metal Mouth Guy
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#15 Post by Metal Mouth Guy » Sat Dec 04, 2004 7:09 am

It's unfortunate that so many people are unhappy with their results. Nothing about medicine is an exact science. From conversations with the medically trained (including my Cardiologist father and Development Biologist wife), what works fine on 99% of the population can often backfire on the last 1%.

But this thread does force me to wonder if people did enough research or asked enough questions before they started the process. I don't expect that we know all the right questions to ask when we start out. But as I've progressed through this process, I've learned things that led me to new questions. I've had the added advantage that my wife teaches and does research at Baylor College of Dentistry - that gave me access to all kinds of information and people who should know the answers.

And one thing that has become absolute in my mind is that you should try to get referrals from people who have no financial gain in the process. Not easy, but possible.

Bottom line - you have to be sure that you and your ortho communicate. Especially with regard to how your expectations align with the expected results of treatment. Think about it... Failure to communicate properly is a major cause of "failure" in everything we do.

As to the "satisfaction" part of the equation, I'll know in about 15 months. I wasn't that "unhappy" with the appearance of my teeth, but I do have a severe cross bite that has been doing quite a bit of damage. My only real goal is to solve that problem (which will require surgery) Anything else that is improved is gravy....

Hmmmmm.... Gravy.... Mash Potatoes.... Sounds good right now.

MMG

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