Wednesday, April 23, 2014

T ~ Teeth/Braces = Tandställning #atozchallenge


All Aboard! "It's Very Swedish..." a train on a cultural journey through Sweden, exploring the differences big and small between American and Swedish culture.

***
I remember my cousin coming to visit from Sweden when I was in junior high.  She remarked (and I'll translate for you) "Wow, a LOT of kids wear braces here."  Totally true. Braces aren't as common in Sweden - not the rite of passage most American kids endure.



I never had braces.  My teeth are, if I may say so myself, well it's my blog you can't really stop me...perfectly aligned.  Neither of my boys will need braces.  The Engineer never had them either.  He has a really great smile...

There are a lot of factors that could account for this difference though, and The Swede told me to get a hold of a Swedish dentist...thanks, very helpful...so let's explore this ourselves since I don't know any Swedish dentists.

Do fewer Swedish kids have braces because their teeth don't need them?

Is it because fewer Swedes put as much emphasis on having a perfect appearance as American society pushes us to have?

Are there fewer orthodontists?  Is dental care part of the socialized medicine, or is it private and therefore just as ridiculously expensive as here in America?

What do you think?  Did you have braces?
I'd also like to know what the incidence of braces is like in your country.  Yes, I'm demanding...

~Tina, who never had braces but I think the two root canals (and crowns) made up for me not contributing to orthodontia, the oral surgeons got my $$$ instead...

P.S Alex J. Cavanaugh gets the Gold Medal from yesterday's post for remembering the that summer cottage is "stuga".  Way to go Alex!

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20 comments:

Hilary Melton-Butcher said...

Hi Tina - good for Alex for remembering Stuga .. the Swedish cottage yesterday - 'fraid I didn't.

I never had braces - but they weren't done in our day .. people may have had half braces when tooth needed to come out and the mouth had to adjust ..

In recent years they seem to be a fad .. are they all necessary - or are the kids following a fashion - an unnecessary one at that? I don't know ..

They don't look desperately enhancing .. though I know some will definitely need a bracing help ..

Cheers to healthy Swedish teeth! .. Hilary

Alex J. Cavanaugh said...

Don't know what I had for dinner last night, but I remember an obscure word from last year!
Never had braces. Thank God.

JoJo said...

I didn't have to have braces but almost all my friends did. My dentist said my overbite would go away and the space b/t my front teeth would close and they did. But he also said my wisdom teeth didn't need to be removed and I had nothing but trouble with them. I have since had the 2 left ones removed. One of my best friends is of Swedish heritage and although she's almost 50, she got braces a couple years ago, not for cosmetic reasons but something to do w/ her jaw.

DAVID WALSTON said...

Never had them. Neither have my kids yet. I guess it might be genetic, but as far as I know I have no sweedish in my gene pool. I have Scottish, it might be the Haggis!

Elsie Amata said...

I never had braces, my boys didn't have braces but my Peanut does. Two bucks a months for two years. Good thing I love her. I blame her daddy!

Elsie
AJ's wHooligan in the A-Z Challenge

Daniel carter said...

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Jo said...

Actually Hilary, and Tina of course, I did have braces in the UK. Not the awful things kids get today, it basically consisted of a plate and a wire round my teeth. I didn't wear it much I'm afraid. Hated it. No idea what age I was, but pretty young. Of course Canada is the same as the States for braces, I feel so sorry for the kids.

CA Heaven said...

I think one of the reasons why so many kids in Scandinavia have braces is that dentists make a lot of money on it, and the state pays the bill (with our tax money). Crazy system, I think (the social democracy is a good system, but not perfect)

Cold As Heaven

CA Heaven said...

BTW, I never had braces, but many of my friends had when I was a kid

Cold As Heaven

Susan Scott said...

Interesting post thanks Tina. I was always amazed at the perfect teeth of Americans. So white and bright and even! Here in South Africa it was not a deal in my day. My teeth are fine, maybe not perfect but fine enough. My boys were encouraged to wear braces as youngsters by the orthodontist ...but they wouldn't have it thank you very much. (we were pleased - the cost! Oh the cost!) Their teeth are strong and fine. It is becoming more of a thing though here in my country. Many youngsters are out and about with brrrrraces.
Garden of Eden Blog

Laura Clipson said...

My dentist wouldn't let me have braces because he said I didn't need them. Now I have crooked teeth, which I'll have to live with.
A few people had braces while I was at school, but not a lot.

homecomingbook said...

I did need braces (65 years ago). Inherited large teeth from my father and a small jaw from my mother. Even with four teeth pulled by the orthodontist and all wisdom teeth removed, my mouth is crowded. I suspect part of it is the mixed ancestry of many Americans, though part of it is cultural.

Andrew Leon said...

One of the most extensive studies about braces suggests that children that breast feed have a much (MUCH) lower incidence of needing braces than kids that used a bottle. The use of pacifiers also increases the need for braces. So there you go.

Huntress said...

Cool braces!
I wonder if our dental health professionals push braces more. Hm.

I didn't need them. Oh, no, I sure didn't. Not after the dentist pulled four teeth to let my others come in straight. YIKES.

Huntress said...

*head desk* Forgot to add:
THX FOR HOSTING 2014 A to Z!!

Author of Wilder Mage at Spirit Called
Facebook Wilder Mage

DayDreamer said...

Here in the UK it's much more prevalent then it was when I was young, when we used to look at the teeth of Americans and Canadians on TV with their perfect teeth. British people were more known for their crooked teeth. My girls have both had/have braces but only as necessary, my youngest was close to not needing them and just passed the criteria for the NHS to pay for them, otherwise it would have been classed as cosmetic only and we would have paid - if we still wanted to go through with it.

Jo, I used to feel sorry for them too, till my girls explained it's so common now and so many have them none of the children mind and no bullying goes on, thankfully.

bemuzin.com said...

No braces, but sadly I'm halfway through six months of mouth splints for jaw therapy and bite realignment from a rather spectacular bike crash last August. I have to wear the splint (done with lower; now on upper) 24/7. Talking is difficult and I sound like I have multiple speech impediments and eating is sloppy, to say the least! Bet you weren't expecting that kind of response, eh?

Fortunately my fractured neck vertabrae healed without paralysis or surgery.

Ortho bills have been equivalent to sending a kid to college for a year!


Andrea said...

Both of my kids could have used braces, but we only got them for the one who needed them!

Brian Miller said...

i have never had braces...i never had my wisdom teeth out either which is coming back to haunt me...long story, but they could not find them when i was a kid...

Kathe W. said...

by the time my adult teeth came in I was off to college- so no braces for me. Tuition took precedence!