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Can I Play Trumpet With Brackets, Piercings, Dentures, Etc?

Brackets, Invisalign, piercings, dentures, and mustaches all affect your trumpeting technique.

It is possible to keep playing trumpet after any of these changes, but all require practice time to adjust to a new mouth position.

Let’s discuss how to continue playing trumpet after embouchure adjustments:

Here’s How Brackets, Piercings & Dentures Affect your Trumpeting:

After getting braces, brackets, dentures, or piercings, trumpet players face the problem of learning a new embouchure. It can affect your technique and in some cases cause you pain. Depending on the kind of treatment your teeth get, or where you place your piercing, they can affect your playing.

Can You Play Trumpet With Brackets?

Dentists may recommend that your teeth need realignment using braces.

With this, trumpet players worry that this will affect their progress, but countless musicians have successfully continued playing trumpet after getting brackets. Despite being uncomfortable and affecting clarity and tone, braces are an obstacle that can be overcome.

It can feel strange and uncomfortable, but it is possible to play trumpet with braces.

This is a common struggle for young musicians, as most teenagers get braces. About 4.5 million people in America wear braces, so no matter how frustrated you get, you are not alone.

After getting braces, trumpet players face the problem of learning a new embouchure. Metal brackets can be painful. The added pressure of a mouthpiece can cause those new braces to dig into the back of your lips and make playing an uncomfortable experience.

Although this can be discouraging, you have a chance to get rid of bad habits.

Because brackets are uncomfortable, you can’t use pressure to hit high notes. You will also need to use more air to create sound, which will make you a better player when those braces eventually come off.

The muscle memory that has formed by practicing will most likely be affected. It’s important to start slowly, practicing long tones and finding what technique produces the best sound.

After you get braces, you have the opportunity to form good habits! Be patient, as it may take time to adjust to how your new embouchure feels.

Can You Play Trumpet With Invisalign?

Invisalign is an alternative strategy for teeth alignment.

Instead of having a permanent fixture on your teeth, these are removable. Because of this, it is much easier to continue playing trumpet normally.

With Invisalign, you can avoid relearning your embouchure because they are removable.

Invisalign should be worn for 20-22 hours every day. This allows musicians to take them out during practice or ensemble rehearsal.

Removing Invisalign would ensure that your technique stays the same.

If you’re concerned about leaving your Invisalign on a music stand, you can leave them in while playing. This comes with similar difficulties as playing with braces, but Invisalign is more comfortable.

Since Invisalign doesn’t have metal brackets, it offers more comfort than braces.

Although they are more comfortable, there is still a learning curve when playing with Invisalign. Your mouth will feel different, which will change how your embouchure feels.

Can You Play Trumpet With Lip or Tongue Piercings?

If you’re considering piercing your lip or tongue, it’s important to understand how this might affect playing your trumpet.

The lips and tongue work together to make sounds, so any change in their position will alter your tone and/or technique.

Both lip and tongue piercings will affect the way you play.

As you play, the position of your tongue compresses air, allowing you to properly hit notes. Deciding to get any type of tongue piercing will take up space in your mouth and inevitably affect your sound.

Piercing any part of your body will irritate the skin for a while. It’s important to know that you won’t be able to play your instrument until your tongue piercing fully heals.

The same goes with lip piercings. After getting pierced, your priority is avoiding infection, which means no playing for a while.

It’s important to think about placement when getting a lip piercing. Since a trumpet mouthpiece rests on the middle of your lips, any piercings in the center will make playing impossible.

Studs on the outside of the mouth are the best option, as any rings may affect your ability to buzz.

However, playing trumpet with piercings is possible. It only takes a period of adjustment!

Like braces, you can adjust the way you play to navigate any piercings. Music instructors may mention removal, but if you manage to have good tone and technique through diligent practicing, piercings won’t be a problem.

It all comes down to how much you want to practice. If you decide to get a piercing, you should expect that you’ll need to relearn how to create a good sound.

Can You Play Trumpet With Dentures?

Many trumpet players worry that with age, they’ll eventually need dentures.

This is viewed as a career-ending moment, but the reality is that many renowned musicians have played with dentures.

Both Roy Eldridge and Chet Baker continued their music careers after getting dentures.

Any changes in mouth posture will affect your technique. After being fitted with false teeth, Eldridge and Baker faced the struggle of relearning their embouchures.

Their passion for music gave them the endurance to keep practicing, and both were met with great success and fame.

Some tips:

  • Consider permanent dentures
  • Model the dentures after your natural teeth
  • Figure out what method of bonding has the best hold

With permanent dentures, you can play trumpet without worrying that they’ll move around. Dentures often come with the hassle of constantly removing them, but permanent dentures will feel more like natural teeth.

If you have spent years practicing, you’ll want to keep the same embouchure that you’ve developed. When you get dentures, it’s important to model them after your natural teeth. This will make your playing feel as normal as possible.

When deciding to get removable dentures, you’ll need to find out which bonding method is best. Whether using paste or powder, make sure that it has a good hold throughout your practice time.

Getting dentures comes with an adjustment period. Regardless of what kind of dentures you choose, patient and diligent practicing is key to preserving your playing ability.

Can You Play Trumpet With a Mustache?

When it comes to playing trumpet with a mustache, trumpet players can’t agree on whether it helps, hurts, or makes no difference in technique.

This implies that growing facial hair is entirely a personal decision. Growing a mustache could limit the amount of control in your embouchure.

Some trumpet players need to be clean-shaven to play well. Having an extra barrier between the lips and mouthpiece can create problems, like affecting flexibility and control.

On the other hand, it could improve your playing.

A mustache reduces the amount of pressure that the mouthpiece has on your lips. Having facial hair could reduce the bad habit of forcing high notes through extra pressure.

Less pressure on your embouchure could allow you to have more endurance. When you can comfortably practice for longer periods, your technique will improve.

If you decide to have a trimmed mustache, it might not affect your technique at all. With well-maintained facial hair, you can keep your mustache from touching the mouthpiece. This option will make no difference in the way you play, but you still get to have a mustache.

Ultimately, this will vary from person to person. Every trumpet player has their own opinion about how facial hair affects their embouchure.

You won’t know how it affects your playing until you try it out, so you might as well grow a mustache and decide for yourself!

Final Thoughts

Changes in your body are unavoidable, which can be troublesome for trumpet players who are trying to keep a consistent technique.

Whether you are facing the obstacle of braces, Invisalign, dentures, or considering body alterations like piercings or facial hair, you’ll need to spend some extra time in a practice room.

The most important thing to remember is to be patient.

When your mouth posture changes, it can be a frustrating experience. It may feel as if all your previous practice time was wasted, as you’re forced to relearn how to play your instrument.

Many musicians have endured similar experiences and have overcome these obstacles, and you can too.

This can be an opportunity to forget bad habits and cement good ones, so take this time to fall in love with music again.


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