So it’s your first week with braces, huh? What an exciting time!
Keeping your braces clean, choosing braces-friendly foods, and knowing what to do in the event of a braces emergency – it can sound overwhelming when you first get started. We promise it’s not too complicated, and the process is incredibly rewarding!
We’re here to help you prepare with 4 essential tips for new braces wearers.
Tip #1: Keep Tylenol in your cabinet.
While everyone’s experience with braces is different, it’s common to feel some tenderness around your gums and teeth during the first week with braces. Your teeth aren’t used to the pressure of your brackets and wires, so it can feel odd to suddenly have braces on your teeth 24/7.
The good news is – you can take precautions to help minimize soreness if you experience braces pain on the first day, second day, or third!
Consider getting an over-the-counter pain reliever to reduce soreness. Studies have shown that ibuprofen and aspirin can slow down tooth movement, so it’s best to choose a medication with acetaminophen – like Tylenol.
Orajel is another solution to help relieve discomfort. Orajel is a topical gel medication that uses benzocaine, a local anesthetic, to numb the gums. It works by blocking nerve signals in the body and can desensitize the mouth to help with soreness.
Tip #2: Keep orthodontic wax on deck.
You’ll thank yourself later! Ortho wax, also called dental wax, can come in handy in many ways during your braces treatment.
At some point, a bracket may bother you; a wire may pop loose if you bite down too hard; or a bracket may detach from your tooth – it happens! If it does, Just place a small ball of orthodontic wax on the bothersome bracket or wire, and make an appointment to see Dr. Jewett!
Ortho wax serves as a temporary solution for a number of different ‘emergency’ braces scenarios, so it’s smart to keep some in your bag or pocket when you’re out and about.
Tip #3: Stock up on your favorite soft foods!
Soft foods will be your best friend during your first week with braces. Soft snacks and dishes are easier to eat when your teeth and gums are sore, so it’s a good idea to stock up on things like mashed potatoes, mac ‘n’ cheese, soft-cooked chicken, soup, soft sandwiches, pancakes, yogurt, toast, pasta, eggs and ice cream!
Biting down on a hard food, like an apple, can leave you feeling pretty uncomfortable. Knowing what to eat with braces the first week depends on your own personal experience. If you’re ready to move back into harder foods after a few days of having braces, then that’s great! You decide when you’re ready to reintroduce all of the braces-friendly foods in your fridge.
Throughout your braces treatment, it’s best to avoid hard candies, nuts, and other hard, crunchy foods that could damage your braces. One of the best tips for new braces wearers is to get creative with your palate! Try out some new braces-friendly recipes – you never know which one could become your new favorite.
Tip #4: Use your resources!
There are tons of resources out there to help you adapt to your new life with braces. Don’t be afraid to do some research, read through some forums to hear about people’s experiences, check out our Life with Braces page for answers to frequently asked questions about braces, and ask your friends or family members who’ve had braces!
Please don’t hesitate to ask us any questions either. Our team is here for you, and we love chatting about your experience! We’ve got tips, tricks and advice to support you through your journey with braces or Invisalign.
If you haven’t begun your journey, but you’re ready to take the first step – request your complimentary consultation with Local Orthodontics in Johnson City today! Or if you’d rather get started from home, simply begin an online assessment to get a personalized smile assessment and cost estimate from our highly-experienced orthodontist.