Caring For Braces

It’s more important than ever to brush and floss regularly when you have braces, so the teeth and gums are healthy during orthodontic treatment. Patients who do not keep their teeth clean may require more frequent visits to the dentist for a professional cleaning. Adults who have a history of gum disease should also see a periodontist during orthodontic treatment. Watch the video below on the proper care of braces during orthodontic treatment.

1. General Soreness

When you get your braces on, you may feel mild soreness in your mouth and your teeth may be tender to biting pressures for 3 —5 days. Take Tylenol or whatever you normally take for headaches or general discomfort. The lips, cheeks, and tongue may also become irritated for one to two weeks as they toughen and become accustomed to the braces, almost like breaking in a new pair of shoes and getting a blister. We will supply wax to put on the braces in irritated areas to lessen discomfort.

2. Loosening of Teeth

This is to be expected throughout treatment. Don’t worry! It’s normal. Teeth must loosen first so they can move. The teeth will firm up in their new — corrected — positions after treatment is completed. Another reason it’s so important to wear your retainer!

3. Loose Wire, Bracket, or Band

Though it can be stressful, don’t be alarmed if a wire, bracket, or rubber band comes loose, this happens occasionally! If a wire sticks out and is irritating, try using orthodontic wax to alleviate the discomfort, if that doesn’t work use a blunt instrument (eraser end of a pencil) and carefully, gently push the irritating wire back into position. Watch the video below on how to handle an orthodontic emergency. Call our office as soon as possible for an appointment to check and repair the problem.

4. Rubber Band and Appliance Wear

It’s essential to work with your orthodontist and try your best to wear rubber bands or other appliances as much as possible. Your teeth and jaw can only move if you consistently wears your rubber bands or other appliances as prescribed. Lack of cooperation following instructions and damaged appliances lengthen the treatment time… so please follow instructions!

5. Athletics

If you play sports, it’s important you let us know. A protective mouth guard will be needed for playing contact sports. Please ask us what we recommend.

Watch this video for emergency care.