Life with Braces

Life with braces is tough at first, but you quickly adjust to their presence in your life. There are some changes to be made, and not all of them are fun. However, they ensure you get the best possible results from your treatment. Here are some simple guidelines on life with braces.

Eating with Braces

When you first get braces, your teeth will feel sore and sensitive to biting pressure. Soft foods you can mash with a fork will make up your diet until your teeth adjust. After that, you can eat more foods, with some restrictions.

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

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 encounter a food you are not sure about, give us a call.

General Soreness

As we noted above, your mouth will be sore when your braces are first placed. This lasts for about five days, though mouth irritation may take longer to go away. Salter-water rinses will help with both of these issues, and dental wax can protect the soft tissues of the mouth. Expect the sensitivity to biting pressure to return for a day or less after each adjustment. If ever the soreness is more than salt-water rinses can manage, you can use the over-the-counter pain medication of your choice.

Loosening of Teeth

For most of our patients, this is actually the hardest part of treatment—especially for older teens and adults. The sensation of your teeth being loose can be upsetting, but we promise you: this is normal. To move teeth, the ligaments holding them in place must become loose, and this will leave your teeth feeling a little wiggly. Do not worry; they will not fall out. And once treatment is over, they will firm up into place.

Appliance Problems

Because your mouth moves constantly to eat, speak, and breathe, it is inevitable that something will go a little off with your appliance at least once. Do not panic. There are fixes you can do at home or you can come see us. For loose wires, try pushing them into place and if a bracket becomes loose, use dental wax to hold it in place until you are able to see us.