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Your braces are on. Now what?

Here are some tips how to get used to your new orthodontic braces and how to best care for them throughout your treatment.

Eating with Braces

You can eat almost anything with your braces, as long as you avoid foods that might cause you to lose a bracket or break a wire. Just take care to avoid foods that may damage your new braces.

Foods to AVOID

  • Ice — Avoid completely. It will destroy your braces

  • Snack chips — Doritos, hard shell tacos, Tostitos, Cheetos

  • Sticky foods — caramel candies, chewing gum

  • Hard foods — nuts, hard candies

  • Foods that require biting into — corn on the cob, apples, carrots

Foods You CAN Eat

  • Dairy — soft cheese, pudding, milk-based drinks

  • Breads — soft tortillas, pancakes, muffins without nuts

  • Grains — pasta, soft cooked rice

  • Meats/poultry — soft cooked chicken, meatballs, lunch meats

  • Seafood — tuna, salmon, crab cakes

  • Vegetables — mashed potatoes, steamed spinach, beans

  • Fruits — applesauce, bananas, fruit juice

  • Treats — ice cream without nuts, milkshakes, Jell-O, soft cake

General Soreness

When you get your braces on for the first time, you may feel general soreness in your mouth and your teeth may be tender to biting pressures for three to five days. This can be relieved by rinsing your mouth with a warm saltwater mouthwash. Dissolve one teaspoonful of salt in eight ounces of warm water and rinse your mouth vigorously.

If the tenderness is severe, take aspirin or a pain reliever. Your lips, cheeks, and tongue may also become irritated for one to two weeks as they toughen and become accustomed to the surface of the braces. You can put wax on the braces to lessen this discomfort. We are happy to provide wax for you in our office.

Loosening of Teeth

This is to be expected throughout your treatment— don’t worry, it’s normal! Your teeth will once again become rigidly fixed in their new, corrected positions.

Loose Wires and Bands

If the band or bracket is still attached to the wire, leave it as is; you can cover it with orthodontic wax if it is irritating the inside of your mouth. If it can be removed easily, place it in a plastic envelope and bring it with you to your next appointment.

Try to place a loose wire back in place with sterilized tweezers or needle nose pliers. If it is not possible to put the wire in a comfortable position, clip the wire with fingernail clippers behind the last tooth to which it is securely fastened. If uncomfortable, place wax on it.

Care of Appliances

The patient must work together with the orthodontist in order to successfully complete the treatment plan. The teeth and jaws can only move toward their corrected positions if the patient consistently wears the rubber bands, headgear, or other appliances as prescribed by the orthodontist.

Playing Sports

We do not want you to stop playing the games you love! A protective mouthguard is advised for playing contact sports. In case of any accident involving the face, check your mouth and the appliances immediately. If teeth are loosened or the appliances damaged, please  phone us as soon as possible. In the meantime, treat your discomfort as you would treat any general soreness.