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It’s not very often that adolescents get excited about having braces. Of course, they know the benefits of this type of orthodontic treatment, but no one likes to be called “metal mouth,” especially at such an awkward age. However, in one part of the world, having braces is not something to be ashamed of, but rather celebrated.

In certain parts of Asia like Thailand, Indonesia and Malaysia, teenagers are shelling out around $100 for what has become known as black-market braces. They can be purchased at beauty salons, open-air markets and retail businesses. Boys and girls can also opt to get them in different colors and even various themes like Hello Kitty.

Risks of Fake Braces

Although fake braces may be all the rage in Asia, orthodontists want adolescents who are thinking about getting them to know that there are risks involved. Some of the wires may contain lead and the metal brackets could cause sores inside the mouth. One 17-year-old from Thailand even died after a pair of black-market braces gave her a thyroid infection which led to heart failure.

The reason that this pseudo-orthodontic treatment has been making waves in the eastern part of the world is because a mouth full of metal has become a status symbol. The majority of families cannot afford the hefty price tag and so fake braces have been deemed the next best option to looking “cool” or climbing the social ladder within teenage circles.

Luckily, if you live in the New York City area, you don’t need to put your health in danger by purchasing fake braces for you or your child. If you’d like to get the smile of your dreams, consider contacting the Dr. Tanya Vaysman of Upper Eastside Orthodontists. Her experienced staff will help answer any questions you have and give you the information you need to determine whether you or your son or daughter is a good candidate for orthodontic braces.

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