Eating With Braces
After getting braces, eating food will take some getting used to. For the first day or two, it is best to consume soft foods such as macaroni and cheese, soups, mash potatoes, pasta, and ice cream as your mouth will be mildly sore. During the first few days it is best to avoid tough meats, hard breads, and raw vegetables. Don’t worry, it won’t be long before you will be back to eating your usual diet – however you may have to modify the manner in which you eat certain foods. It is essential to protect your orthodontic appliances when you eat for the duration that you will be wearing braces. Because your teeth are already beginning to move into place, there may be some discomfort present.
Foods to Avoid for People with Braces
Certain foods that are chewy such as bagels, hard rolls and licorice should be avoided. Crunchy foods such as popcorn, ice cubs and chips also may pose a threat. Sticky foods like caramels and chewing gum are not a good idea for people with braces. It is also a good idea to avoid hard foods such as nuts and candy as they may cause damage. It is also very important to be careful of foods that you have to bite into such as corn on the cob, apples, and carrots.
It is also a bad idea to chew on hard things like pens, pencils or fingernails as this can damage the braces as well.
If your braces do become damaged, it will increase your treatment time. When your braces are installed, we will give you tips on how to eat the foods you love without causing damage to your braces.
General Soreness Associated with Braces
After your braces are put on, you may feel general soreness in your mouth. In addition, your teeth may be tender to biting pressures for three to five days. If the pain and tenderness is severe, take Tylenol or whatever medication you would normally take for a headache or similar pain. Until your mouth becomes accustomed to the braces, your lips, cheeks and tongue may also become irritated. This sensitivity can last for one to two weeks as your lips, cheeks and tongue become accustomed to the surface of the braces. There are methods to alleviate the discomfort caused by braces. Wax can be used on the braces and rinsing your mouth with a warm salt-water mouthwash can also help. We will show you how to apply wax to the braces and give you instructions on making a salt-water mouthwash.
Loosening of Teeth Due to Braces
It is normal if your teeth become loose throughout treatment. Don’t worry! The braces procedure requires that teeth first loosen so that they can be moved. Once the braces treatment is complete, your teeth will become rigidly fixed in their new corrected positions. It is for this reason that retainers are necessary after orthodontic treatment.
Care of Braces Appliances
To obtain a beautiful smile, the patient must cooperate with any special instructions given by Dr. Eckstein and Dr. Yusupov. In order for the teeth and jaws to move toward their corrected positions the patient must consistently wear the rubber bands or other appliances as prescribed. As mentioned before damaged appliances will lengthen the treatment time.
Brushing With Braces
It is more important than ever to brush and floss regularly when you have braces. It is important that your teeth and gums are healthy during and after orthodontic treatment. When you get your braces, we will instruct you on the proper way to brush and floss to maintain a healthy and beautiful smile. It is very important to maintain good dental hygiene during orthodontic treatment to minimize your risk of getting cavities, decalcification of enamel (“white spots”), and gingivitis/periodontitis.
In addition, patients who exhibit difficulty in maintaining good oral hygiene may require more frequent visits to the dentist for a professional cleaning. Adults who have a history of gum disease should be monitored by a periodontist during orthodontic treatment to minimize the risks of complications.
Dr. Eckstein and Dr. Yusupov strongly recommend the Sonicare toothbrush for all orthodontic patients. It is by far the best toothbrush on the market right now and well worth the investment!
Flossing With Braces
For a patient with braces, flossing becomes a much more difficult task because of the wire that connects the braces. Flossing is also more important than ever. Generally, patients without braces don’t floss enough, and are now expected to floss even more so with braces when it is more difficult. Flossing with braces can be a problem, leading to red and puffy gums that bleed easily. To assist in making flossing easier, Dr. Eckstein and Dr. Yusupov recommend the Platypus Flosser from Paradise Dental Technologies and the Waterpik/Hummingbird Flosser. These items are all inexpensive and highly recommended to ensure maximum results.