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Afya,  Random

How to smile when you feel self conscious after extracting a tooth

Oh! how I missed chewing on the right side of my mouth

– Me every other day these days

I’m gonna go ahead and say that I think I stopped smiling in pictures in 2018, or maybe early 2019. There are different reasons that led to this, one being I was really depressed in 2020 especially, the other being smiling in pictures stopped making sense, it became so fake like why are we even just smiling for the picture even if that moment didn’t bring a smile on our faces, but I think another reason I stopped smiling in photos is because I had extracted a tooth and another one had a procedure done, so I was self conscious.

Also Read : How to know if you are depressed

I have a very beautiful smile, but after I extracted a tooth, the procedure that brought me relief since that tooth had decayed and it was a source of major discomfort in my body, I became worried that the loss will be the first thing people notice and not my beautiful smile anymore. Recently when I extracted another tooth, the one that had a procedure done, I started to see the whole loss differently. It’s not true that I would choose to stay with a decayed tooth forever to keep a smile that shows all teeth intact, it’s not true that my beauty has changed because I extracted two teeth, by the loss of the teeth I had gained my ability to chew on both sides freely something that was so painful before. Recently I have started to be grateful for the loss, that maybe it was also a gain in disguise. Having done so many procedures to keep my tooth together, letting it go set me free, set my mouth free. I look at my grandma having few teeth in her mouth, living joyful and I think why am I being so hard on myself while it is a normal thing to happen to a human being? In a world where we are all self conscious, my gaps will be the last thing someone thinks about. Constantly feeling bad for the loss, makes me oblivious to the gift that the loss has given me, the gift to chew on both sides pain-free.

So how does one smile when they have extracted a tooth and they feel self conscious? By letting go of their previous idea of beauty, that they only thought they were beautiful because they had their teeth together, letting go of that. By finding beauty in the loss, looking at it in a different light. By embracing the gaps, as something beautiful that was left after the loss, after one decided to get rid of the tooth that was causing pain, this gap, this freedom, this ability to chew again, to eat and be merry. By making your own definition of beauty and deciding not to be a prisoner of another person’s definition of beauty, to live life freely and laugh as loud as you can at a joke and get lost in the moment of joy, think of yourself less, how you look less, enjoying life more. By being like my niece who is losing a lot of her teeth right now and she is so busy playing to make a big deal about how her teeth look like. You are beautiful, with mouth full of teeth or with none.

Also Read : Here’s how you can learn to love your body


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