The 1-minute video that shows how braces really work.

Image: Katy Perry embraces the ‘metalmouth’ look 

There aren’t many people who managed to escape high school without enduring the adolescent rite that is… braces.

Nothing goes better with teen angst and awkwardness than a mouth full of metal – and, in some cases, external headgear. Talk to anyone who went through The Brace Face Phase, and they will rattle off a long list of grievances that can arise when teeth are being pulled and pushed into alignment. These include, but are not limited to:

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It goes on. Aches, pains and food/social/romantic issues aside, braces are pretty amazing devices – and are almost always worth the results they produce.

Because they move teeth gradually it’s hard to observe exactly how braces operate; and you can only really appreciate and admire the process once you have them removed (and manically run your tongue over your strangely slimy, perfectly straight teeth).

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However, this one-minute time lapse video provides a rare insight into how braces actually work. The clip, created presumably quite a long time ago by the American Association of Orthodontists, depicts how an 11-year-old’s crooked teeth were aligned over a period of 18 months.

Accompanied by some seriously mystical music, it makes for fascinating viewing – and will bring back all your teenage orthodontic memories. Brace yourselves:

Did you have braces growing up?

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