If you’re thinking about investing in any orthodontic treatment in order to improve the look and feel of your smile, you may have a number of concerns, including whether or not you will be able to speak normally when wearing your braces. Although you may experience some speech problems during teeth straightening treatment, when your braces are first placed on your teeth or when adjustments are made throughout the process, your speech will go back to normal after a while.
This will happen once your tongue, lips and cheeks have got used to having your braces in your mouth. So if you’re worried about the long term effects braces may have on your speech, don’t worry, any effects that you experience will only be temporary!
And it’s not just braces that can affect your speech, any foreign object that you place into your mouth can cause a lisp or make it difficult to say certain letters. However, your lips, mouth and cheeks are super quick at responding and adapting to change.
And really, when you think about it, it’s a small price to pay considering that at the end of your teeth straightening treatment you will be the proud owner of beautiful, straight teeth, right?
But why do braces affect your speech?
We all have our own unique way of talking, moving our lips, and using our facial muscles. These movements become a unique part of our identity over time so, when your braces are first placed on your teeth, it can take a little time for your mouth to adapt to a whole host of new sensations and movements.
Your oral structures will automatically adjust in response to new movements when it comes to the way you talk, eat and smile. So, in time, you will find it much easier to go about your day-to-day life with your new braces.
How to gain control when it comes to your speech
When you first get your braces, it’s certainly worthwhile learning more about speech function, as this will help you to gain more control and understanding when it comes to your speech functions.
You’ll learn things like the importance of posture when you are speaking, as well as the processes involved in voice sound and controlling pitch from your diaphragm.
Some patients undergoing teeth straightening orthodontic treatments also swear by using dental wax on their braces in order to enhance their speech. This is because the dental wax helps to provide improved smoothness and glide for speech. Of course, as with any dental treatment, your dentist or orthodontist will be able to offer lots of advice when it comes to helping you to overcome any challenges you may face when it comes to a change in speech.
Tip for Teeth Straightening – practice, practice, practice!
When your braces are first placed onto your teeth, you may find that you will develop a slight lisp. Although this can be annoying at first, the majority of patients find that their lisp entirely stops after only a few days of wearing their braces.
However, not everyone’s experience is the same and some people find that they need a little help and hand when it comes to adjusting to their braces. For example, there are lots of speech exercises that you can do in order to slow down your speak and improve the pronunciation of certain words which can trigger a lisp.
Words with D’s, S’s and T’s in them often prove to be problematic to many patients but the good news is that there are a number of ways that you can improve your speech including:
Singing – even if you are not the best singer in the world, we all love belting out our favourite song from time to time, right?
And if you love nothing more than hearing the sound of your own singing voice, you will be pleased to hear that singing is great for helping you to adjust to new oral movements when wearing braces. It can also help your lips, tongue and facial muscles move better when wearing braces.
Speaking and reading out loud – There are a number of cases where patients have found that talking, singing or reading out loud has really helped them when it comes to speech function.
Of course, making a conscious effort to slow down your speech with purpose will also hello you to adjust to your new braces and help with clearer speech.