Straighter teeth won't guarantee happiness
[ 2007-02-23 09:46 ]
A girl shows her braces
in an undated file photo.
Straightening children's crooked
teeth with braces may improve their smile but it is no
guarantee of happiness and improved self esteem.
A 20-year study by scientists in Britain that looked at the impact of
braces on more than 300 children in Wales showed that having straighter
teeth had little positive impact on their psychological health later in
When they were questioned as adults, none of them regretted having had
their teeth improved and most were satisfied with the way they looked. But
there was no difference in their psychological wellbeing when compared to
other people who have never had braces.
"On the basis of our research if there are irregularities, and
especially if they are not severe, then there will be no harm to dental
health and it wouldn't change their life happiness in the future if they
don't wear braces," said Professor William Shaw, an orthodontist at the
University of Manchester in England.
Each year countless children around the globe receive orthodontic treatment to align their teeth
or correct other irregularities.
Parents can spend a small fortune on their children's dental work. In
Britain, braces can cost 2,000 pounds ($3,915) or more depending on the
severity of the problem.
All the people questioned in the study published in the British Journal
of Health Psychology had quite significant dental irregularities and had
received braces free through Britain's state-funded National Health
"It can be concluded that, although in general participants'
self-esteem increased over the 20-year period, it was not as a result of
receiving braces," Shaw said.
crooked : having or marked by bends,
curves, or angles（弯曲的）
orthodontic treatment :正牙治疗