5 Tips for Surviving Your First Week With Braces

May 18, 2017
J. Courtney Gorman, DDS, MS

5 Tips for Surviving Your First Week With Braces

The hardest part of getting new braces can be enduring the first week. Your body is just getting used to these strange, new pieces of metal in your mouth, and you likely feel a bit sore at first. Once you get through that first week, though, you’re well on your way to a beautifully straight smile.

In order to help you feel more comfortable in your new braces, we’ve compiled a list of five tips for surviving the first week:


How should you handle orthodontic emergencies with your braces?


1. Be Prepared Before Leaving our Orthodontics Office

After getting your braces, don’t leave the office until you’ve talked to us about the following items:

  • Check wire ends. Use your finger and tongue to make sure the wires aren’t extending into areas that might poke your cheeks or run into your tongue the wrong way.
  • Understand next steps. Make sure you ask plenty of questions to make sure you know what you’re supposed to do before your next appointment, which could include wearing headgear, using elastics, following specific hygiene recommendations, and more.
  • Double check your supplies. Ask your orthodontist for plenty of dental wax, cleaning aids, elastic bands or other related materials you may need before your next appointment.

2. Be Careful What you Eat With Braces

It’s okay to eat as soon as you leave the office, but we highly suggest only eating softer foods the first few days while your mouth and teeth adjust. Stick to pasta, seedless bread, soft veggies, pudding, soup, yogurt, etc. After about 3-4 days, the soreness will start to go away and you can graduate to more solid foods, but always steer clear of those foods on the “do-not-eat list,” as they could cause damage to your teeth and braces.

3. Use Wax to Fight Sores in Your Mouth

Brackets are designed to be gentle on your mouth, but they can rub on the soft skin in your mouth and cause irritation while you’re still getting used to them. Over time, your skin will toughen and you won’t continue to get sore spots. Until then, it’s a good idea to use the wax we provide to ease any discomfort.

4. Rinse Your Mouth With Saltwater

If you’re experiencing significant irritation, we suggest rinsing your mouth out with a solution of warm salt water for 30 seconds and 5-6 times per day. Just add half a teaspoon of table salt to one cup of warm water. The salt water will help relieve pain and allow sores areas to heal faster.

5. Always Practice Good Oral Hygiene

Use the toothbrush we provide to clean your teeth after every meal, taking extra care to clear away every bit of food that might get stuck in your brackets. Don’t forget to follow your normal routine of brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing on a regular basis. Getting into these habits early on in your journey with braces will ensure that you don’t encounter any problems down the road.

Each person adapts to the discomfort associated with new braces differently, but if you follow these five steps then you’ll experience a much more comfortable path to straight teeth. Once you make it past these first few days, it’ll be smooth sailing and you won’t even notice that you have braces on!

As always, please don’t hesitate to reach out to us with any questions you may have about your orthodontic treatment plan.

 

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