Smile. Show us that glint. Teeth. A central facial feature. For a man without arms they provide an added dimension. Control the movement of my dressing stick. Pen. Stylus. They are my hands. Can’t do without them.

An overheard conversation last week. A 50 something young Grandma. Confidence destroyed for years through crumbling teeth. Trapped in a self-conscious vortex. Hurtful assumptions made. Untrue. New teeth. Just fitted. New person. A decade lost.

My 14 year old daughter is on last lap of orthodontic treatment. She knows she is so lucky. Got her early. No teeth removed. Overbite. No more. And bands are now cool. In a range of colours.

In my day one size and design fitted all. Clearly not. Everyone ended up looking like the baddie in all those Bond films. A different badge of dishonour. Not today. Encouragement needed.

Confession. An extra front tooth grew from roof of mouth. Not disability related. Removed. End of my dental treatment. At 12 parents felt I had enough challenges. Right decision. But not for vanity reasons. My formative independence years. Would have made my mouth redundant. Me. Dependent. The trade-off. Crooked teeth. Slightly bucked. But liberators. My teeth are me. The look is part of my difference.

For Purple Tuesday supporters. No need to watch visual video. For others. Watch. And accept my awkward smile.

Skip to content