The Biggest Struggles Everyone Who's Had Braces Will Remember

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Ah, braces. They're completely necessary for fixing not only our crooked teeth, but also our jaw, bite, and so much more. My mouth was so messed up that before braces, I couldn't even bite down on an apple. Now I can!

Still, beauty is pain, and braces definitely came with its share of pains. Luckily, thanks to the Internet, we can commiserate over it together. 

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1. Getting Dental Impressions, Where You Feel Like Human Silly Putty

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Dental impressions were your — for lack of a better term — first impression to the world of braces. It was awkward, and it was only going to get worse. 

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2. Braces Hurt Physically AND Emotionally

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MadisonLarrieu / Twitter


Getting your wires tightened, AND having the metal rip apart the inside of your mouth AND having your face look like the Transcontinental Railroad? How much is one person supposed to take!?

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3. You're Doomed to Have Awkward Yearbook Photos

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...that your family INSISTS on keeping framed and on display, years later. So you'll never forget!

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4. Brushing Your Teeth Was This Whole Thing

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My orthodontist wanted me to brush my teeth every day (reasonable), not only in the morning and evening, but also after lunch (stay with me, here). You know, when the school bathroom is the most crowded. And your peers without braces just DIDN'T UNDERSTAND why this can't wait. 

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5. There's All Kinds of Food (LIKE POPCORN) That You Can't Eat

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Eating popcorn with braces is NOT allowed. I had braces for five years. That's five years without popcorn. Shhhhh, don't cry for me. One of us has to stay strong.

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6. We Also Can't Have Gum

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In my high school, gum was practically currency. Friendships were formed based on if someone offered you gum. Friendships for everybody except ME.

Some kids with braces cheated on the no-gum role, and were met with broken wires and a surprise visit to the orthodontist. Not worth it!

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7. Picking the Perfect Color for Your Braces

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Good luck, because you have to commit to the color for a WHOLE MONTH.

Protip: NEVER pick yellow. It only makes your teeth look, well, yellow.

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8. Having THIS Horrible Fear

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Even worse: It's the apocalypse, you still have braces, and the only immediate source of food is a fully stocked popcorn factory.

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9. Sometimes Your Orthodontist Forgot to Wear Deodorant

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With all that leaning over your face, there's no avoiding the smell. It makes that 10-minute wire tightening feel like hours.

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10. Holding in Rage While a Friend Brags That They Don't Need Braces

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Good for you! Tell me more about what it's like to not have teeth that look like a haunted house's staircase.

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11. The Stress You Feel When You Run Out of These

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"Back again, Eileen?" --The cashier at Walgreens, 2005

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12. When You Finally Get Your Braces Off, The Struggle Is STILL There

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Now you have a retainer to be responsible for. A small, easy to lose, expensive to replace retainer.

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13. Still Finding These Guys Around the House YEARS Later

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I got my braces off in 2006. It is now 2016, and I STILL find these babies in my childhood bedroom. They greet me every time I go home for Christmas. 

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14. The Nightmares Never Stop

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My most common nightmare, right behind being late for the SATs and naked, is needing to have braces again. You can't betray me, smile. I worked too hard for you.

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