This week I’ve been going through photos and reflecting a lot. My oldest daughter is graduating from High School, something that she’s smiling widely about. I know it won’t be long till my younger daughter (presently a freshman) is standing on the front doorstep in a cap and gown as well.
Thanks to Invisalign Teen for Sponsoring this post about Teen Confidence. All opinions are my own.
For my oldest in particular, I’m struck by how things have changed since she started school. I had to dig through boxes of printed(from film!) photos to find her kindergarten pictures. When she started school, Facebook wasn’t a thing. There was no Twitter or Instagram. Social media barely existed.
My daughters have come of age alongside social media. They are first generation users. As a parent I am navigating uncharted waters, helping them through a time in their lives that has always been fraught with storms, and awkward spells. Now every second of these trials has the potential to be documented forever. I’m not sure I could have dealt with this constant pressure. Our kids don’t really have a choice.
According to a study on teen confidence conducted by Invisalign, 54% of teens felt their life would be better without social media.
I’m not sure my own teens feel this way ALL the time, but I know they have both had moments where they wished for an escape from the constant scrutiny.
For girls in particular (but also for boys – my 11yr old son is right behind his sisters) appearances are a huge factor in self self esteem. Now more than ever. Not a day goes by without a selfie, “ussie”, or facebook post. Snapchat stories are broadcast throughout the day, every day as friends share their activities and whereabouts.The makers of Invisalign clear aligners commissioned the Teen Confidence Survey to understand how teens and their moms really feel about braces and its affect on teen self-esteem. Consider the following data from Invisalign’s study:
- 54% of teens felt their life would be better without social media
- 40% feel their appearance is being judged more closely on social media than in person
- 90% of teens feel judged by their peers; 94% of teens believe looks affect popularity
- The majority of teens (57%) think that crooked teeth are embarrassing vs. 23% of Moms. But while 41% of teens feel wearing traditional braces is embarrassing, only 18% of moms agree
- 92% of Teens say that wearing metal braces would keep them from fitting in with their peers
Go to invisalign.com/unbraceteenconfidence to view and download the free interactive pocket guide, view the complete survey and learn more about what teens and moms have to say about confidence.
My daughters have both been fortunate enough to use Invisalign aligners as part of their corrective treatment. It’s minimized their time in traditional braces and had a positive and lasting impact on their self esteem. I’m actually a little jealous that they have so many great photos of themselves in their teens. I don’t think many people from my generation can say the same! For both convenience and confidence I would make the same decision about orthodontic treatment again in the future. I would, and will choose Invisalign for my sons and my husband is looking to enter treatment shortly as well.
We don’t always want to consider the superficial things. In a perfect world it wouldn’t matter what you looked like. But this is not the world we live in. We can’t change the world, but we can make some simple choices that minimize the impact of teasing and self consciousness on our kid’s psyches and self esteem. Simple decisions that have lifelong impact. For me this is a no-brainer.
The Teen Confidence survey was conducted in 2014 and polled 3,577 US teenagers ages 13-17 and 2,118 US mothers of teens ages 13-17, plus an oversample of 101 mothers of teens ages 13-17 who wear or have worn Invisalign clear aligners. The survey was conducted on behalf on the makers of Invisalign clear aligners by Kelton, a leading global consumer insights and research firm.