Caring for Braces
While the results braces deliver are incredible, caring for them is less so. No, it isn’t all that difficult, but it does require some work and adjustments on your part. To help, check out our guide below.
Eating with Braces
It may be a bit of a struggle at first, and you may feel super limited in the foods you can eat.This is most difficult right at the start, when your teeth are most sensitive. For these initial days, stick to foods you can easily mash with a fork. Steer clear of foods that are hard, sticky, crunchy, or tough throughout your treatment.
There are a few tricks around some problem foods.You can cook your vegetables to make them softer, cut your corn off the cob, and slice apples and sandwiches into small, bite sized pieces.
If you’re in doubt about a particular food, ask the doctor.
Foods to Avoid
- Sticky – gum, caramel, tootsie rolls, peanut butter, toffee
- Hard – apples, carrots and other raw vegetables
- Crunchy – popcorn, chips
- Tough – bagels, corn on the cob, sandwiches, steak, ribs
Expect your mouth to feel a little sore right after you get your braces. This is because of the pressure braces place on the teeth and because the metal pieces of your braces can rub the soft tissues of the mouth, causing irritation. To address these problems, use saltwater rinses and over-the counter pain medications. Dental wax can also be placed on your braces to reduce irritation.
Loose Wire, Bracket, or Band
If the wire is flexible, you can use tweezers to push it back into place. Should you find this too difficult, dental wax can be used to stop irritation. Dental wax can also temporarily hold a loose bracket in place. Then, call us so we can evaluate the issue and provide a more permanent solution.
If you are not in any pain or discomfort, often times, we can wait until your next appointment to address the issue.Please call ahead to let us know something is loose so that we can be prepared for you and minimize your time spent at your next visit.
Care of Your Teeth and Braces
It is always important to brush and floss your teeth to keep them clean and healthy – with braces, it’s more important than ever. Consistent brushing and flossing will ensure that your gums and teeth remain healthy throughout your treatment.
We highly recommend an electric toothbrush. These vary in price but they can often be found at an affordable price at your local drug store. If you do not want to use an electric toothbrush, do not sweat it! Here are the important points to keep in mind. Using a soft bristled toothbrush begin by brushing the outside of your teeth and braces holding the brush tilted at a 45 degree angle. Brush along the top and bottom of the braces using light to moderate pressure, making sure you cover every surface very carefully. Don’t forget to brush the teeth all the way in the back and behind your back molars. It’s a good practice to brush for three minutes at least twice a day. Using a timer or singing along to a song will help you keep track of your tim.
Flossing at least once a day is very important for good dental hygiene and to keep your teeth healthy. Flossing with braces may seem difficult at first. To floss properly, you will need to thread the floss under the archwire. This can be done in two ways – either by threading the floss through on your own or using a floss threader to thread the floss under the wire.
When threading the floss, it is a good practice to start by pushing the floss vertically from the top to the bottom on your upper teeth and from the bottom to the top on your bottom teeth, always threading away from your gums. Once threaded, carefully floss around each tooth and gum, moving the floss up and down, just like you did without braces.