Eating with Braces
What should you eat? Well firstly let’s talk about what you shouldn’t eat! If you’ve been wanting to lose weight, the first week wearing braces is just your chance! For the first day or so, stick to soft foods. Avoid tough meats, hard breads and raw vegetables. Before long, you’ll be able to bite a cucumber again. But you’ll need to protect your orthodontic appliances when you eat for as long as you’re having orthodontic treatment.
Foods to Avoid
Chewy foods: bagels, hard rolls, licorice
Crunchy foods: popcorn, ice, chips
Sticky foods: caramels, gum
Hard foods: nuts, candy
Foods you have to bite into: corn on the cob, apples, carrots
Chewing on hard things (for example, pens, pencils or fingernails) can damage the braces. Damaged braces will cause treatment to take longer.
When you have your braces fitted, you may feel soreness in your mouth and our teeth could be tender for a few days. This can be improved by rinsing your mouth with warm salt water made as a mouth wash. Simply dissolve one teaspoonful of salt in 8 ounces of warm water, and rinse your mouth out. If the tenderness is severe, you may take pain relief or use what you would usually take for a headache or similar pain. Your lips, cheeks and tongue may also become irritated for one to two weeks as they harden and become accustomed to the surface of the braces. You can put wax on the braces to lessen this.
Loosening of Teeth
This can to be expected throughout the course of your treatment. Don’t worry! because it’s normal. Teeth must loosen first so in order that they can be moved. The teeth will again become rigidly fixed in their new, desired correct positions.
Loose Wire or Band
Don’t be alarmed if a wire or band comes loose. This can sometimes happen. If a wire protrudes and is irritating, use a blunt instrument (back of a spoon or the eraser end of a pencil) and carefully, gently push the irritating wire under the archwire. Simply get it out of the way. If irritation to the lips or mouth continues, place wax or wet cotton on the wire to reduce the annoyance. Call our office as soon as possible for an appointment to check and repair the appliances. If any piece comes off, save it and bring it with you to the office.
Care of Appliances
To successfully complete the treatment plan, patients have to work together with the orthodontist. 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. Damaged appliances would increase the treatment time.
It’s more important than ever to brush and floss regularly when you have braces, so the teeth and gums are healthy after your orthodontic treatment. Patients who do not keep their teeth clean may require more frequent visits to the dentist for a professional cleaning or may get unsightly staining. Adults who have a history of gum disease should also see a periodontist during orthodontic treatment.
If you play sports, it’s important that you consult us for special precautions. A protective mouthguard is needed for playing contact sports. In case of any accident involving the face, check your mouth and the appliances immediately. If any teeth are loosened or the appliances damaged, phone us at once for an appointment. In the meantime, treat your discomfort as you would treat any general soreness.