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Life With Braces - Tips & Advice for Life with Braces

Foods on the Good List:

While you must modify your diet while wear braces, there are still many things you can enjoy. Here are some examples:

Foods to Avoid:

Habits That Will Damage Your Braces:

In addition to the above-mentioned foods, there are habits that can bend and break your braces.

General Soreness

Right after you get your braces put on, you may feel a bit of pressure or tenderness in your teeth and gums. This will usually go away after three to five days, but you can take Tylenol or Ibuprofen to help in the meantime. Certain areas of your mouth may become irritated because of the metal brackets as well, but they will adapt and toughen up over time. Rinsing with saltwater or placing dental wax over an offending bracket can help minimize any irritation, too.

Loosening of Teeth

This is to be expected throughout treatment. Don’t worry! It’s normal. Teeth must loosen first so they can be moved. The teeth will again become rigidly fixed in their new-corrected position.

Rubber Bands

Rubber bands are small elastics that create a continuous force causing the upper and lower jaws to align properly. Unless otherwise advised by the doctor, you need to wear your elastics 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You may remove the elastics only when eating and brushing your teeth. You should wear the rubber bands the way the assistant has shown you. If you forget how to wear them, please call the orthodontic office so we can explain proper placement. You should replace your rubber bands with new ones at least once a day. After a while, elastics lose their strength. Always carry extra elastics with you in case they break or get lost. If you run out of elastics or lose them, please stop by the orthodontic office to pick up more. If it is not convenient to do so then call us and we will be more than happy to send them to you.

Your teeth may feel sore for a couple of days while adjusting to the elastics. The soreness will go away with continuous wear. Giving your teeth “a break” from the elastics will only make them feel sore the next time you put them on and set you back in treatment.

Brushing and Flossing

Good oral hygiene practices are important to a healthy mouth with or without braces. With braces, food and plaque have more places to hide. It is important to take a full 2-3 minutes of quality brushing 2-3 times a day. You should make certain to brush along the gum line where food and plaque can easily get caught. After your braces are placed, one of our team members will go through detailed hygiene instructions with you. We will provide you with an orthodontic “survival kit” that has all the tools you will need to care for your teeth and braces.

Retainers - Essix Retainers - clear retainers

Congratulations!! You have made it through treatment and now you have a beautiful smile. In order to keep your great smile, you must wear your retainers or else the teeth will move back. You will need to follow these directions to take care of your retainers and your brand-new smile.