Life with Braces

Once you have your braces put on, you will go through a period of adjustment. It’s not uncommon for patients’ mouths to feel uncomfortable for the first couple days, but we promise it won’t last forever! During the day, we recommend Tylenol, it is effective and well tolerated.  Should you choose to use Advil or similar pain reliever, make sure you take the medicine with food to prevent stomach upset.  

Many patients also find rinsing with warm saltwater to be soothing. Simply dissolve one teaspoon of salt into eight ounces of warm (NOT scalding) water, then swish and gargle the solution for a couple minutes (do not swallow the saltwater!). It is not uncommon for your lips, cheeks, and tongue to become irritated while they’re getting used to your new braces. We do provide you with some wax to cover offending brackets or wires and help make you more comfortable.

Sometimes, patients may also feel their teeth starting to become a little loose. If this happens, don’t worry! It’s normal for teeth to loosen up during orthodontic treatment. This happens as they prepare to move into their new position. Wires and bands may come loose occasionally as well. If this happens, please contact us as soon as possible so we can check and repair your appliance. In the meantime, you can temporarily move the wire back into place by gently pushing it with the back of a spoon or a the eraser end of a pencil. Damaged appliances can increase the length of your treatment process, so it’s important that you follow the suggestions above and take good care of them. If you play sports, wear a mouthguard. Just ask for one at the office and we will be delighted to give you a mouth guard that will enable tooth movement. If something happens to your braces, always let us know right away so we can make repairs and get you back on track. If any pieces break off, be sure to bring them into the office with you.

You should take care to maintain a balanced diet throughout the course of your orthodontic treatment. The following suggested foods are soft and easy to eat, a big plus at the beginning of treatment until you get used to your teeth moving toward your fabulous smile!  

  • Soup, yogurt, pudding, or Jell-O
  • Pasta (spaghetti, lasagna, macaroni & cheese, etc.)
  • Eggs (omelets, scrambled, quiche, etc.)
  • Cheese (hard & soft, cottage cheese, blintzes, cheese cubes, etc.)
  • Rice, potatoes, or cooked vegetables
  • Salads (tuna, salmon, egg, etc.)
  • Pancakes or French toast
  • Milkshakes
  • Fish, soft meats, or poultry (not on the bone)
  • Canned or soft fruit
  • Peanut butter
  • Cereals (cold oatmeal)

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