Here are ten things you should know when starting your journey with getting braces.
Do braces hurt?
WHAT SHOULD YOU DO IF YOU FEEL SORENESS?
The actual process of putting braces on your teeth does not hurt.
Since the braces are new to your teeth, it’s normal to feel discomfort or soreness in the first couple of days.
Try to eat soft food the first day you get your braces, and if you feel any soreness, rinse with warm salt water.
Currently, clear aligners offer the fastest correction speed. For reference, Invisalign treatments can be finished in several months, whereas metal braces can take several years. It’s not just clear aligners that offer speed. Another form of fast-correcting braces is self-ligating braces.
How Long Does it Take for Braces Treatment?
Everybody is different, and depending on the severity of your case, it could take around 2 to 3 years to complete your treatment.
Now this will vary between patients because no two teeth are alike. Depending on various factors such as the severity of the issues, any bite issues such as crossbite, your age and the health of your teeth can all affect how long your treatment will take.
Generally speaking, orthodontic treatment can take anywhere from 12 to 36 months.
Process of Getting Braces
How Are Braces Put On?
Traditionally, orthodontic brackets are placed directly onto the teeth one at a time. We use a unique indirect bonding technique that allows us to put on all of your braces at once To get a behind-the-scenes view of what happens before braces are put on.
How often should you come back for your braces appointment?
You must come back periodically to get your braces tightened or adjusted. That way, we can also ensure that your teeth move in the right direction.
How Should You Brush with Braces?
We recommend that you use a toothbrush with some bristles. Brush in small circular motions along the gumline.
Make sure to brush above and below the wires and around all of your brackets.
Please also brush the outer surfaces, the inner surfaces, and the chewing surfaces of your teeth.
You can also use a small proxy brush to remove some of the food around and through brackets if you’d like.
You should try to eat soft foods such as pasta, mashed potatoes, soup, or even smoothies during your treatment.
Try to avoid hard, sticky, or chewy foods like gum, hard candies, bagels, and beef jerky.
If you can, try to cut everything into small pieces to avoid broken brackets.
How Do You Floss with Braces?
- One way you can floss is just with regular dental floss. Make sure to thread the floss underneath the wire first. Move the floss up and down on either side of the tooth.
Make sure to hug the contours of each tooth. Remember to floss on the other side of the tooth as well.
You can also use a platypus flosser, which can be easier because it can go underneath the wire.
Slide the thin side of the flosser, called the spatula end, under the wire. Move the flosser up and down on one side of the tooth.
Do the same thing on the other side of the tooth.
- Another way you can floss is using a Waterpik water flosser.
First, fill it up with warm water. If you’re new to water flossing, we recommend starting at the lowest pressure.
The Waterpik flosser can remove food from around wires in the brackets. Be careful not to aim directly at the gum line.
What should you do if you have a broken bracket, a pokey wire, or irritation?
You can apply wax if you have any cheek irritation due to brackets. Dry the bracket with a tissue before applying wax.
Place a small piece of wax and place it directly onto the bracket.
If you still feel any irritation or soreness, rinse with warm salt water, and if you have any poking wires or loose brackets, use a little wax to secure it in place and call your orthodontist as soon as possible.
If you have recently had braces put on your teeth, you may experience some pain from braces or discomfort around your teeth, gums and inner cheek.
Don’t be worried; this is normal. The discomfort usually goes away after the first few days.
Here are some tips to help you ease the discomfort:
Apply Ice Packs
One of the easiest ways to ease the pain caused by braces is to use ice packs around the painful areas.
In the same way, you would apply ice to an aching tooth, applying ice packs to the area of discomfort is an effective way to reduce swelling and inflammation and alleviate the pain.
Take pain relief medications.
When force is applied to teeth by braces, an inflammatory response around your teeth is initiated during the first few days.
It is this inflammatory response that results in the discomfort you experience.
Taking pain relief medications, such as ibuprofen or paracetamol, can help relieve the pain in your jaws and gums. However, pain relievers are not the best solution as they can be addictive.
Take pain relief medications only if you need to.
Using orthodontic wax
Most patients will be given orthodontic wax once they start orthodontic treatment.
Orthodontic wax can be applied to areas that are poking or sticking out. It acts as a barrier between the soft tissues and the braces.
Applying orthodontic wax to braces provides excellent relief to the discomfort caused by your braces.
Change Your Diet
The food you eat can make a difference in reducing braces’ pain. When you start wearing braces, your teeth and gums may become sensitive.
This means you can no longer continue with your regular eating habits.
Ideally, you should avoid crunchy or hard foods like raw veggies and chips and instead opt for softer foods like yogurt, cheese, mashed potatoes, and soups.
Warm salty water rinses
Another simple and quick home remedy to relieve discomfort from braces is regular warm salt water rinses.
Salt is a natural curing ingredient. Simply gurgling salty water a few times a day can help ease the pain from ulcerations and swelling on your gums and inner cheeks.
Observe Good Oral Hygiene
Pain caused by wearing braces typically subsides over time as your teeth adapt to the adjustments.
You may experience mild pain and discomfort for several days, but the outcome will always be well worth it.
Use a floss designed to work around braces, and brush gently around your teeth and gums with soft bristles toothbrush.
Don’t forget to brush around your braces, as food can be trapped under the braces and wires.
Contact your orthodontist
Some pain and discomfort are expected after your braces are put on and after your orthodontist tightens your braces.
If, however, after you have tried all home remedies and the pain persists, you may Contact Specialists in Orthodontics to organize a FREE consultation appointment with our specialist orthodontists.
Can You Still Get a Dental Checkup with your Braces on?
The American Dental Association recommends getting a cleaning and dental checkup every six months.
Taking good care of your teeth with your braces on is essential since you don’t want to have any cavities.
What happens after braces treatment?
After finishing your braces treatment, you will receive retainers. Make sure to wear these retainers to maintain your beautiful smile.
We recommend that you wear your retainers at night time for a lifetime.
Please call us if you’d like to learn more about braces treatment.