It is important to understand what to expect with your braces as well as how to properly care of them. Choosing the right foods and performing regular dental care is crucial to help you get the most benefit from your braces and reduce your treatment time.
Eating With Braces
There are certain foods you should avoid with braces. Although you may have to take precautions with food and treats you enjoy for a short time, the benefit of straight teeth and a beautiful smile will be worth the temporary discomfort. After the removal of your braces you can go back to enjoying all of the foods you love.
While you have braces you should avoid the following types of foods:
- Chewy food
- Crunchy food
- Sticky food
- Hard food
Although you may need to avoid certain foods for a while, there are many foods that you can still enjoy, including:
- Most dairy products
- Soft breads, tortillas, and muffins without nuts
- Soft grains
- Tender meats, lunchmeat, and ground beef
- Most seafood
- Cooked or soft vegetables
- Soft fruits and fruit products including applesauce, bananas, and fruit juices
- Ice cream without nuts, milkshakes, pudding, soft cake
Soreness and Discomfort
It is common to experience some soreness and discomfort immediately after you get your braces on and sometimes after an adjustment. This tenderness should not last longer than a week or two and there are several things you can do in the meantime to alleviate some of the discomfort.
- Rinse your mouth with a salt water solution. Dissolve one teaspoon of salt in 8 ounces of warm water to rinse. Do not swallow the salt water solution.
- Take a pain reliever if rinsing does not reduce the irritation
- Use wax over the wires and brackets as the inside of your cheeks and lips become used to the irritation
- Follow instructions for emergency care if you have a problem with your braces
You may experience some loosening of your teeth after you get your new braces. A little loosening is normal and the teeth will no longer feel loose after they have moved into their new position.
Loose Wires and Bands
Loose or broken wires are common with braces. If one of your wires becomes loose or broken it is important to contact us immediately to schedule an appointment to have this problem fixed. In the meantime you can try pushing the wire back into place with a pencil eraser or a spoon. Additionally, you may place some wax or a wet cotton ball over the end of the wire to prevent it from irritating your mouth.
It is important to take good care of your appliances and wear them as directed. You will receive the maximum benefit from your braces if you follow all of our care instructions. Call immediately if any of your appliances become broken or missing.
Orthodontic treatment does not inhibit your ability to participate in sports or athletic activities. You should always wear a mouth guard when participating in any athletic activity to protect your teeth as well as the appliances in your mouth. If any part of your braces or teeth becomes damaged in the duration of an athletic activity you should call our office immediately for repair. Our orthodontist can help you find the right mouth guard for your protection.