For some people, they think that braces are all about looking good. They think that the sole purpose of going to the orthodontist is so that you can correct crooked teeth. What else could braces possibly give you other than a beautiful and confident smile? To others, this sounds like pure vanity. They think that braces should not encourage such narcissism and they should only be about dental health. The sole function of braces is to straighten the teeth so that the chewing motion is as smooth as possible and the gaps between teeth are clear so that dental hygiene can be easily maintained. So who is right? Are the people that think that orthodontics are just about having a good smile correct, or are the people that think that orthodontics are just about dental health correct? Well, if you ask me, I think that it is a combination of the two. I think that they are both correct in the assertion that both of these features are important and products of braces. And I think that they are both wrong in their assertions that orthodontics are just about only one of those things. The beauty of braces is that they can combine both of these benefits in one fell swoop. The beauty is that you do not have to choose. A confident and beautiful smile is the epiphenomenon of a healthy smile. If your teeth are straight, the roots of the teeth are going to grow as they should and maintain a healthy root. This will reduce the likelihood of gingivitis and other diseases of the gums. These diseases are serious because they do not just affect the mouth but other parts of the body. The bacterial diseases can spread through the blood stream. This means that they eventually wind up in your heart. This is the dynamic at play when people say that gingivitis can lead to heart disease. Additionally, straight teeth make it easier to keep your teeth, gums, and the spaces between the teeth clean and bacteria free. But at the same time, what are we actually doing to the teeth to ensure all of these health benefits? We are making them straight and symmetrical. So we are obtaining a beautiful, confident smile by the very act of obtaining a healthy smile. Straight teeth can be a great way to increase your sense of poise and confidence. It is the first thing that people see when you meet them because it is right in front of them. Your smile is your key to making a positive impression on people. A warm, attractive smile can win people over in a moment. The great thing is that this winning smile is also a healthy smile. To repeat, you do not have to choose. So to return to the two voices at the beginning, they are both right. Both an attractive smile and a healthy one are important. And the disagreement between the two is an imagined one. There is no tension because you can, and will, have both.