July 21, 2023
Getting braces brings some big changes into your life. These orthodontic appliances take some getting used to as they shift the positions of your teeth into better alignment, and they require a dedicated effort on your part to do the job. This includes eating restrictions and specialized oral hygiene. The adjustment can be challenging, and you will probably be a little sore for the first week. Here are some tips on managing the transition and starting off right on your way to a straight and beautiful smile.
Before You Leave the Office
When your braces are first placed, you should be sure to do the following before you head out the orthodontist’s door.
- Make sure you have all the supplies you’ll need. Ask your orthodontist for cleaning aids, elastic bands, dental wax, or anything else you might need before your next appointment.
- Check if wires are going to poke into your cheeks or tongue. Probe around your new braces with your finger and tongue to see if anything is sticking out strangely and talk to your orthodontist if you find anything.
- Take care that you understand what you need to do before your next appointment. This includes headgear, elastics, hygiene, and dietary requirements.
Understand the Dietary Requirements
There are some foods you shouldn’t eat with braces, but you’ll probably want to stick to softer foods during the first few days after getting them. These include things like soft veggies, pudding, soups, yogurt, mac and cheese, mashed potatoes, and the like. When the soreness subsides a few days later, you can work your way back up to more solid foods.
While wearing braces, steer clear of tougher foods like hard candy, popcorn, nuts, and crusty bread, and chewy or sticky foods like bagels, gum, caramel, and taffy. Food is also off-limits if you have to bite directly into it, such as an apple or corn-on-the-cob. These can all interfere with the treatment by warping the wire or dislodging the brackets.
Know Your Oral Hygiene Needs
Having braces adds a few items to your oral hygiene routine. You should brush your teeth after every meal, taking care to clean away any food that gets stuck in the brackets. You must floss every day, which usually requires a floss threader product to get under the wire. You might also have to use a gum massager, a water pick, and an interdental brush to reach between the brackets.
If you experience sores, you can use orthodontic wax to cover any pointy parts on your braces. This will protect the soft tissues in your mouth from irritation resulting from constant poking. Rinsing your mouth out five or six times a day with warm saltwater for thirty seconds can help sores heal and relieve pain. Just add a teaspoon of salt to a cup of warm water.
Braces can be a lot of work, but they are worth having well-aligned teeth that bite better, are easier to clean, and harder to injure. Braces are a temporary situation with the long-term result of a healthier, more beautiful smile.
About the Practice
Serenity Orthodontics brings smiles into better alignment in the area around Cumming, GA. Led by Drs. Susan Podray-Donovan, Kylie Lewis, and Karolina Grochowska, the staff provides families with lasting results through compassionate service and the latest technology. Services include traditional braces, InBrace Invisible Orthodontics, Damon Braces, Invisalign, and other oral appliances. If you’re curious about what else to expect during your first week with braces, contact the office online or call the Vickery Village office at (678) 879-3006.
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