Braces are a huge adjustment when you first get them so it’s a great idea to learn as much as possible about braces beforehand to help make the adjustment process go more smoothly. Whether it’s planning easy-to-eat meals for your first week with braces, or how to protect them from damage while playing sports, or how to navigate flossing with braces, we’ve got you covered with what you need to know about braces before you get them, while you have them and when you’re getting ready for the big day when you get them off.
Your First Week With Braces
Your first week may feel like a crash course in what you need to know about braces, but don’t worry, it gets a lot easier! For your first week, it may be helpful to plan ahead with meals and snacks that don’t require a lot of chewing, such as soups, pastas, puddings and smoothies. It may also be helpful during the adjustment period to plan some quiet time hanging out with a good tv show to marathon watch or with a good book to read since it may take some getting used to before talking a lot will feel as comfortable as it did before you got your braces.
Braces will feel bulky at first in your mouth, but you will soon adjust and likely even forget they are there. Your orthodontist may give you some dental wax to cover the brackets that may be in places that cause extra irritation at the beginning or recommend a mild topical numbing gel or over the counter pain medication while your mouth gets used to the new feeling of your braces.
Playing Sports with Braces
As you get used to your braces, you’ll probably start to think about all the hobbies and activities you enjoy doing, and wonder if braces will interfere. The good news is, probably not! Your orthodontist doesn’t want you to have to sacrifice your lifestyle for orthodontic treatment, so braces are designed to fit with as little intrusion as possible. To protect your braces and your smile, though, your orthodontist will likely recommend a mouthguard specially designed to fit over braces to wear when you play contact sports that put you at risk of trauma to the mouth. What you need to know about braces and sports typically comes down to how to protect your braces, teeth and lips from impact before you can engage just as you did before!
Brushing and Flossing with Braces
Brushing your teeth with or without braces is much the same, just be sure to angle the brush to reach all the surfaces on either side of the brackets and wires. However, flossing can be a bit more complicated! What you need to know about braces and keeping your teeth clean with them is often greatly simplified by knowing about the right tools. Your orthodontist can recommend small tools called dental picks to help clean around brackets and between teeth. Your orthodontist may also provide you with floss threaders or recommend a special kind of floss that has a threader, or stiff portion of floss, built in to help you thread the floss under and through your braces. Don’t worry, you’ll get the hang of it soon!
Ask Your Orthodontist!
Whatever questions or challenges come up, don’t hesitate to call and ask your orthodontist about it! Your orthodontist has likely dealt with the issue you’re facing many times before, and probably has a solution ready to make things easier for you! Your orthodontist is your best resource for what you need to know about braces and always here for you to help make the process of orthodontic treatment as easy and comfortable as possible.
Call our 5th Street, Riverside, Galleria, Heights, Oak Forest, Rice Village, Richmond, Spring or Hulen dental offices to make an appointment with a dentist who may be able to help you find out more about this topic, and improve your oral health.