What to Expect with Braces
All new things feel different.
Are braces uncomfortable?
Braces take some getting used to.
Two common things to expect in the first few days after braces are placed.
- tooth soreness
- cheek irritation
All discomfort will pass after a few days, but until it does, discomfort can be managed using the same medication you would use for a headache. For example, over-the-counter pain medication like ibuprofen or acetaminophen. The inside of the cheeks will “toughen up” after a few days, but until they do you can use the wax provided in your homecare kit.
As the bite changes, certain teeth may interact differently. Bite changes are expected and part of the process.
Follow-up appointments are known as “adjustments”. At adjustment appointments, wire sizes are changed, braces are added, and sometimes orthodontic elastics introduced. Any time changes are made, it is normal to experience some mild discomfort.
The better your oral hygiene is, the better your overall health will be. It is important to brush your teeth after every meal with a fluoridated toothpaste and floss at least once per day. When brushing, remember to include your tongue, cheeks, and the roof of your mouth.
Whether it be a manual toothbrush or an electric toothbrush, soft bristles are recommended to avoid damage to your gums.
At Varble Orthodontics, we strongly encourage our patients to practice healthy oral hygiene habits. To do so, we teach them proper brushing and flossing techniques while in treatment and provide them with an electric toothbrush. The electric toothbrush has soft bristles that rotate in a circular motion offering more brush strokes and a better clean than a manual brush in the same given timeframe. Subsequently, it reduces the risk of gum disease and tooth decay.
The things we eat and drink during orthodontic treatment are just as important as oral hygiene.
Two important considerations when it comes to braces treatment and diet:
- What and how you eat
- What you drink
What and how you eat
Braces are attached to the teeth with an orthodontic specific adhesive. This adhesive is intended to be removed at the end of the braces treatment without damaging the enamel surface. Hard foods can create enough pressure to break this adhesive bond and dislodge the braces from the teeth. We provide a list of foods commonly associated with bracket breakage, but the list is not complete. Another important factor is how we eat certain foods. Care needs to be taken with all foods to avoid placing large pressure on the braces. Broken brackets are uncomfortable and may extend the time it takes to complete orthodontic treatment.
What you drink
Drinks with high sugar and acid content should be avoided. People who consume these drinks during braces often find ugly white scars on the teeth when braces are removed. Limiting the consumption of sodas, juices, and athletic drinks can eliminate the chances for tooth damage.
What do I do if I break a bracket?
A broken bracket is not an emergency, but we would like to know about it. Call the office and we will determine if a repair appointment is necessary.