Get the most out of your treatment. Take care of your braces!
There are some things you need to keep in mind when you are in braces. Here are a few:
Eating When You Have Braces
During the first few days of having your braces, you should stick to soft foods that are easy to bite and chew. You should avoid tough meats, raw vegetables and hard breads. But don’t worry! Before you know it, you’ll be able to eat whatever you did before you got braces. Still, as long as you have braces, protect your orthodontic appliances when you eat.
There are some things you should just plain avoid though.
- Crunchy foods: ice, chips, pretzels, popcorn
- Sticky foods: gum, caramels
- Hard foods: nuts, candy
- Chewy foods: hard rolls, licorice, bagels
- Foods you have to bite into: carrots, apples, peaches, corn on the cob
- Chewing on hard things such as pencils, pens or fingernails can damage
- braces and treatment may take longer than originally anticipated.
Foods to Avoid While in Braces
Loosening Before Moving
As your braces prepare your mouth for that perfect smile, first they will work to loosen your teeth. This is a normal part of the correction process. Once the teeth are loosened, they can then be moved into position. Once they are in position, they will settle and become rigidly fixed in their new spot.
Soreness and Mouth Irritation
For the first three to five days with your braces, you may experience soreness in your mouth and your teeth may be more sensitive when biting various foods. By simply rinsing your mouth with a warm saltwater mouthwash, you can find temporary relief. To make a saltwater mouthwash, dissolve one teaspoon of salt in 8 ounces of water. While still warm, rinse your mouth with the mixture vigorously.
If the tenderness does not subside, take a painkiller similar to what you would normally take for a headache. As other parts of your mouth begin to toughen and become accustomed to your braces, you may notice your lips, cheeks and tongue growing irritated the first few weeks you have braces. By putting wax on your braces, you can lessen the irritation and soreness you experience.
Irritating Band or Wire
Occasionally, a band or wire on your braces may loosen. If a protruding wire becomes irritating, you can take action to get it out of the way. By using something blunt like a pencil eraser or the back of an eating utensil, you can gently push the irritating wire under the archwire. If the wire continues to cause irritation, place wet cotton or wax over it. This quick fix may relieve the irritation until you can make an appointment to see your doctor to repair the appliances. If any wire or piece of the appliance comes off, take it with you to your next appointment.
Dental Care and Brushing
Now that you have braces, it’s more important than ever to brush and floss regularly. This will ensure your gums and mouth are healthy when your treatment is complete—after you have invested time and money into your teeth. Those who do not keep their teeth and gums clean may require additional visits to the dentist for professional cleanings.
How to Brush With Braces!
How to Floss With Braces!
Following the Plan Consistently and Caring for Appliances
For the teeth and jaw to move toward their corrected positions, patients must work with us consistently and follow the prescribed treatment plan. By wearing the headgear, rubber bands and other appliances as recommended, you will be able to get your braces off in the minimum amount of time possible. Conversely, if you damage your appliances or wear them on an inconsistent basis, your treatment time is bound to lengthen.
Always Be Careful Where You Leave Your Retainers!
Contact Sports and Athletic Activity
If you play contact sports, ask Dr. Jennifer Eisenhuth about using a protective mouth guard to protect your appliances. If you are involved in any type of accident during athletic activity, check your appliances and your mouth immediately. If the appliances appear damaged or the teeth loosened, schedule an appointment with us right away.