Article Summary: My teeth journey started when I was young. I was an avid thumb-sucker and ended up with bucked, gapped teeth. In elementary school, I got the works from Dr. Dudas: top and bottom braces; an expander (my only memory from a Disney vacation was lying on the hotel bed and wincing as my mom turned it); and a Herbst, a metal contraption that connects the top and bottom teeth. After a few years, the braces came off—oh, boy, did I flash a big smile in all my high school pics. In college, I got lazy about wearing my retainers and my bottom teeth shifted. Now, at 36, I'm embarking on yet another treatment. Along with whitening services and pre- wedding lip filler, I've put a lot of effort into my mouth. But it seems like a good place to invest, right? If you aren't confident with yours, here is what's helping me fall back in love with my smile.