Once you have braces, it is important that you take care of them throughout your entire treatment. Damaged appliances can increase the length of your treatment process. Your teeth and jaws can only move into their correct positions if you consistently wear the appliances prescribed by our orthodontist, and if all appliances are in working order. Smile at the World Orthodontics has provided some basic information on caring for your braces on this page. To learn more about life with braces and to schedule your appointment with Dr. Knowles, call us at 254-773-8028 today.
Eating with Braces
There are some types of foods that can damage your braces. Our orthodontist recommends that you avoid the following types of foods:
- Chewy foods – bagels, licorice
- Crunchy foods – popcorn, tortilla chips
- Sticky foods – caramel candies, taffy, gooey candies
- Hard foods – nuts, ice, hard candies
- Some foods that require biting into – corn on the cob, raw apples, raw carrots
- Sodas – any carbonated beverage
Soreness Caused by Braces or Other Appliances
When you first begin wearing braces, you may experience some soreness or aching for a few days as your teeth begin to move and your mouth adjusts to your braces. This mild aching can also occur following adjustments to your braces. If you experience persistent pain, please contact our office as soon as possible, and make an appointment with our orthodontist so that we can resolve the problem.
To relieve discomfort, we recommend dissolving one teaspoon of salt in 8 ounces of lukewarm water. Swish and gargle this solution in your mouth for a couple of minutes – do not swallow the saltwater! If further pain relief is needed, you can also take a pain reliever, such as ibuprofen.
If anything is irritating or rubbing against your cheeks or lips, our orthodontist recommends placing wax over any brackets or parts of your appliance that may rub. We provide this wax to you with your new patient kit.
Loose Wires, Bands, or Brackets
If your wires, bands, or brackets come loose, please contact our office as soon as possible so that we can check and repair your appliances. If any piece of your appliance comes off, be sure to save it and bring it to the office with you. If you cannot come into our office immediately, we will be able to provide you with instructions on caring for you lose or broken appliance until you can visit us.
Playing Sports with Braces
Braces do not stop you from playing sports. Our orthodontist does, however, recommend that you be fitted for a custom mouth guard to protect your teeth and appliances, as well as your lips, cheeks, tongue, jaw, and soft tissue. Please ask us about sports mouth guards when you visit our office.
If there is a sports emergency, check your mouth and appliance for damage immediately, and contact our office for any needed repairs.