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Discussion in 'Trumpet Discussion' started by riefil, Aug 14, 2012.
He's already the coolest kid in the band because I'm his dad.
It's going to take some adjustment, but just remind him to keep at it. All of the above suggestions are great. I've had several students go through the braces thing and it does vary for each individual. The key thing here is that the braces won't last forever. The most important thing is to keep practicing and not lose the progress he has already made. It will be another adjustment when they come off, as his mouthpiece placement may well have shifted. Just let it happen.
I suggest playing without any aids, but have wax available in his case if needed. I use wax on my bottom teeth if they start to cut my lip a little if I'm playing a lot. It doesn't affect my playing. I had a student with braces. He made first chair in his high school wind ensemble with braces !
I was really frustrated when I first got braces because I couldn't even make a sound but I kept practicing and became first chair in my middle school band. In 9th grade I decided to go to baritone my freshman year in high school and I quickly became their best baritone player. In 10th grade I went back to trumpet and was still able to play well enough to get a solo in our half time show, that year in September I got my braces off and quickly became 1st chair. Don't be discouraged by the hardships that braces bring to trumpet playing. They will make you a better player!
Just like other people have said dont purposely change how you play when he gets those braces. I played with braces on almost threw all high school years. The only thing i would do is put on the wax my orthodontist would give me. That only helped me out for about a month until my lips got used to the braces being rubbed with that damn wire. Since you say he doesn't have a horn yet and has not played all summer im assuming when he gets back on it with braces hes going to have such a difficult time (or maybe not) with the braces and all that time off he took. My only recommendation to your son would be practice every day and be very very very very very very patient with your self. Dont let that frustration get in the way. There is not much to it.
I should have a horn for him by this weekend. He's actually looking forward to getting it. I was thinking just to get him used to playing, practicing with only the mouthpiece. This way he doesn't have to put as much pressure against the braces at first.
PS it's a cool Horn- circa 1930 Cleveland. Has an out of round 1st valve that a local tech says he can fix. The tech was excited just to see such a cool horn, let alone work on it. Got it for nothing to boot.
An update. Picked up the horn on Friday. They did a fine job on the repair and cleaning(see pix in Vintage Eye Candy thread). Plays beautifully. We tried a few different mouthpieces 10-1\2c, 3C, 5C etc... He was most comfortable with the 3C. He said it doesn't really hurt much. In fact his mouthpiece positioning looks better than when he was using a 7C. In fact I find it easier as well. Thanks for all the advice. It really gave us a place to start.
Thanks for the update!
I went through the whole braces deal in high school. I used these plastic bumpers that worked. They just fit over the edges of the braces and gave me a smoother surface to play on. It was definitely an adjustmenet period though. I went from 2nd overall chair as a freshman to 3rd overall as a sophomore with braces. It's important to not be discourages, because once he gets his braces off, he will shoot up. That's what I've heard of other peopl as well. Bumpers aren't for everyone, but they are worth it to try. By the way, the wax the orthodontist gives out is not a good idea to use. It gets incredibly annoying hen it gets stuck in between braces
No pain no gain! I got my braces on a little over a year ago. At the end of my 8th grade year in band. I got them on right before a chamber concert I had to do a solo in (Oh the agonizing pain). I had a tough time adjusting and it took a lot of practice, concentration, and patience. I'm on chuck's side with this. No aids would be best, but if needed use wax. I only had to use wax on my braces once and that was for MPA that year where I was horrified of messing up since I was the only one playing the part I was on. I'm more worried about getting my ambrochure adjusted AFTER the braces are taken off. It all gets easier though, but you have to build the calluses on your lips first. If it's getting to the point that his braces are cutting his lips and they're bleeding (I can personally say that has only happened to me the first of my braces). Then he can use use wax. Those brace guard products aren't going to do anything that wax cannot. Good luck! The first month was the hardest for me, and the constantly changing ambrochure will help in the long in the way I see it.