Life with Braces

It’s the bomb!

The braces experience is different for every patient. Many patients go through treatment without any discomfort, but for others, there can be a little discomfort when they first get their braces on. For everyone, your time in braces can be a great time in your life as you see your new smile taking shape. Below you’ll find some information that will help you minimize your time in treatment and maximize your comfort while your braces are on. At Crescent Orthodontics, our Team is here for you when you need us- help is just a call away!

Helpful Tips

  • We recommend you use a soft-bristled toothbrush with a small head. Electric and sonic toothbrushes are also recommended.
  • Brush your teeth after meals and snacks.
  • If you have eaten while away from home, use an interdental brush to dislodge any food that may get caught around your braces.
  • Rinsing with water is another way to dislodge food from your braces and to keep sugar from sitting on your teeth.
  • Floss your teeth at least once a day.
  • We recommend that you continue your regular dental cleanings and check-ups with your dentist every 6 months during treatment- or more frequently if recommended.

Eating With Braces

Now that you have your braces, how do you take care of them? It is important for you to know how to properly take care of your braces throughout your entire orthodontic treatment!

Don’t worry- you will be eating popcorn and snacking on potato chips again in no time! However, before you can start enjoying some of the treats you love, you will need to take special care to avoid any foods that could damage your new appliances.

FOODS TO BE CAREFUL OR AVOID EATING WITH BRACES:

  • Chewy foods — hard bagels, licorice
  • Crunchy foods — popcorn, chips, ice
  • Sticky foods — caramel candies, chewing gum, skittles, taffy
  • Hard foods — nuts, hard candies, ice
  • Foods you have to bite into — corn on the cob, apples, and carrots (cut these to enjoy!)

FOODS YOU CAN EAT WITHOUT BEING CAREFUL:

  • Dairy — soft cheese, pudding, milk-based drinks
  • Breads — soft tortillas, pancakes, muffins without nuts
  • Grains — pasta, soft cooked rice
  • Meats/poultry — soft cooked chicken, meatballs, lunch meats
  • Seafood — tuna, salmon, crab cakes
  • Vegetables — mashed potatoes, steamed spinach, beans
  • Fruits — applesauce, bananas, sliced fruit, most berries (but watch out for seeds)
  • Treats — ice cream without nuts, milkshakes, Jell-O, cake

SMILE CONSTRUCTION UNDERWAY!!!!

When you first get your braces, you may notice that your teeth and mouth feel a little tender or sore. This is perfectly normal for patients who have just gotten their braces put on, and we promise your mouth will not be sore forever! To relieve the pain, we recommend dissolving one teaspoon of salt in eight ounces of lukewarm water. Swish and gargle this solution in your mouth for just a couple of minutes (do not swallow the salt water).

If the pain is more severe and does not go away after rinsing, you can also try taking a pain reliever. It is also not uncommon for your lips, cheeks, and tongue to become irritated for one to two weeks as they toughen and become used to the braces. We would be happy to give you some wax that you can put over the braces to lessen the tenderness. If you need some wax, please let us know!

Loose Teeth

If your teeth begin feeling a little loose during treatment, don’t worry- this is normal! Your braces must first loosen your teeth in order to move them into the right position. Once your teeth have been repositioned, they will no longer be loose.

Loose Wires and Bands

The wires and bands on your braces may come loose. If this happens, please contact us as soon as possible so we can adjust your appointment and reserve the time to repair your appliance. If any piece of your appliance comes off, be sure to save it and bring it to the office with you.

You can temporarily fix the loose wire by using tweezers or the eraser end of a pencil to carefully and gently push the wire back into place. If the loose wire is causing irritation to your lips or cheeks, put wax over the broken wire to relieve the pain. You can also clip the wire as we showed you in the office to remove the poking wire and we will repair at your next appointment.

Take Care of your Appliances

Damaged appliances can increase the length of your treatment process, so be sure to take care of all your appliances. Your teeth and jaw can only move into their correct positions if you consistently wear the rubber bands, retainer, or other appliances prescribed by your doctor.