When you decide to get braces, you know that you’ll be committing yourself to a lengthy treatment. But what exactly will life be like with this dental appliance? While no two cases are exactly the same, here are a few things you can expect.
Getting braces put on does not hurt, but your teeth and mouth will be sore for about a week afterward. To deal with pain and discomfort, it’s recommended that you eat soft foods for the first few days and avoid acidic drinks and foods because they can irritate mouth sores. Over-the-counter pain relievers and orthodontic wax can help with pain and irritation.
It will take some time for your mouth to get used to the appliance. Mouth sores can form if you accidentally bite the inside of your cheek while getting used to the braces. These sores should heal quickly and be less of a problem as your mouth toughens up. Your lips and gums may also develop sores caused by irritation from the roughness of the braces. A weak solution of salt water can help to ease irritation, and after a while, your mouth will get used to the feeling of the braces.
When you have braces, it’ll be more important to avoid foods that come with a high risk for cavities, such as sweets and soda. Sticky, chewy foods and hard, crunchy snacks should also be avoided because they can cause damage to the braces.
You’ll have to learn how to floss and brush around your braces to keep both the appliance and your teeth clean. This will take a bit of practice, but you should get the hang of it after a while.
You should plan to see your dentist or orthodontist more frequently. This is not only to get your braces adjusted as part of the treatment, but also so that the orthodontist can check the condition of the braces, making repairs as necessary, and the health of your mouth in general.