Congratulations on getting your brand new braces and beginning your journey to the smile you’ve always dreamt of! Braces come with some extra responsibilities to keep up with if you want the treatment as efficient and effective as possible. One of those responsibilities is properly taking care of your shiny new appliances. Lucky for you, we want to break down the process of taking care of your braces with detailed instructions so it’s less stressful on your end.
Soreness With Braces
After you initially receive your orthodontic treatment, you may experience some general discomfort for about the first week. We’re here to tell you that this is normal and can be easily mediated with some pain reliever that you may normally take for headaches, such as ibuprofen. If you find the new braces are irritating your gums and the inside of your cheeks, feel free to apply some orthodontic wax provided to you to relieve the irritation.
Brushing With Braces
Brushing your teeth with braces should be part of your daily routine that’s performed at least twice a day. On top of that, we highly advise brushing your teeth after each meal as well since there’s a higher chance of food getting stuck in your teeth or between the brackets.
When brushing your teeth, make sure you are:
- Brushing gently, applying the same amount of pressure that you would when writing with a pencil.
- Brush the outside of each tooth at a 45 degree angle.
- Brush where your gum and teeth meet in a gentle, circular motion.
- Brush on the inside of each tooth (as you would normally)
- Brush the chewing surfaces of each tooth (as you normally would)
PRO TIP: Use a toothpaste with fluoride to strengthen your enamel and decrease your risk for cavities.
Flossing With Braces
Having braces can get in the way of the standard flossing you’ve been accustomed to doing as part of your routine. Luckily, there’s many different tools to make flossing with braces as simple as possible.
Different types of flossing instruments:
- Floss Threader
- Oral-B Super Floss
Options to be used in addition to traditional flossing include an air-floss or water flosser.
Yang Orthodontics recommends flossing 1-2 times a day to ensure you get rid of the plaque that hides away in the cracks and crevices that a toothbrush just can’t reach. When flossing, make sure you reach between each tooth as well as up under your gum margins. Afterwards, rinse with clean water or mouthwash.
Foods to Avoid
Yes, the rumors are true. There are certain foods you need to avoid in order to complete your treatment and have that beautiful smile as fast as possible. The following list is a no go zone when it comes to foods while going through treatment:
- Chewy or sticky foods like taffy, caramels, and jerky
- Harder foods like raw carrots, whole apples, hard candy, cookies..etc
- Crunchy foods like corn chips, popcorn, almonds, and corn nuts
Feel free to still eat fruits and veggies, just cut them up into small pieces to protect your braces.
Sports & Braces
If you play a sport, especially if it’s one that has some contact involved, we recommend getting a special mouth guard meant for braces. Orthodontic mouth guards are specifically designed to conform to upper brace brackets for instant comfort and prevention from lacerations while providing essential protection for your mouth.
At Home Braces Emergencies
Unfortunately braces aren’t indestructible and accidents can happen. When they do, more often than not, there’s no need to schedule an emergency visit to Yang Orthodontics. Some common issues that can occur include broken or loose brackets, poking or loose wires, or broken rubber bands. If you’d like to learn about how to fix each one of these issues, click here to read our blog on orthodontic emergencies.
At your initial appointment at Yang Orthodontics, we explain everything you need to know. We hope you can use this page as a refresher on things to expect and do properly when going through your braces treatment. We’re here to help you get the smile you deserve.
If you have any additional questions, feel free to give us a call/text at 215-757-0864 or email us at [email protected].