Welcome to the world of orthodontics! You will be surprised at how little time it takes to adapt to your braces. Here are some suggestions and information on braces and what to expect.
During the initial adjustment period, patients may experience minor symptoms:
- Discomfort can be expected during the first week of having your braces and after your regular adjustments. Your teeth will become sore, especially when you bite down. Common pain relievers, such as Aspirin, Tylenol and Advil will help, along with eating softer foods until the discomfort subsides.
- Irritiations that feel sharp can occasionally occur, even though we take every precaution to avoid it. If something feels like it is “poking,” cover it with wax to make a smooth surface temporarily, and call us to schedule a time to come in as soon as possible, We don’t want you to be uncomfortable.
- Mouth sores occasionally develop as your mouth is adjusting to your braces. Rinsing with warm salt water (1/2 tsp. salt in 8 oz. warm water ), will be soothing until these areas “toughen up.”
- Mobility – As your teeth begin to move, they sometimes feel “loose” and mobile. It is a normal but strange sensation: in fact, you may feel your teeth becoming mobile off and on throughout the treatment.
Proper care of your teeth while in braces must include:
- Regular dental check-ups must be maintained with your family dentist during our treatment. Regular cleanings are especially important while wearing braces, and frequency of check-ups will vary between patients.
- Brushing and flossing will take extra time at the beginning to keep your teeth, braces, and gums clean and healthy. Brushing after every meal and snacks is theonly way to prevent plaque build-up and decay. Another handy device is an oral irrigator (waterpik), which is a recommended addition to good brushing.
- A fluoride rinse should be used every day for extra protection against permanent marks (decalcification). The 0.5% Sodium Fluoride rinse is available as ACT, Fluorigard or Oral-B Anti-Cavity Rinse over the counter at the drugstore.
Avoid breakage by watching your diet:
- Avoid hard, sticky foods that may damage the appliances or bend the wires. For example: ice, gum, hard candy, popcorn, nuts, corn nuts, pretzels, etc.
- Cut up some foods into bite-size pieces before eating, such as: hard crusts (pizza, breads. etc.), apples, carrots, celery, steak, etc.
- Avoid habits that will break the appliances: nail-biting, chewing on pencils or pens, pulling or picking on your appliances.
If you damage your braces, the situation can prove to be uncomfortable, and may delay your treatment time. If any part of your appliance becomes loose or broken between visits, please call our office as soon as possible.