About Braces

Foods to Avoid While Wearing Braces

Generally, common sense will tell you what foods to avoid during orthodontic treatment.

Hard foods, such as ice, nuts and bagels, can damage brackets and wires. Sticky foods, like licorice, gummy bears and tootsie rolls can get caught between wires and brackets. Hard and sticky foods should be avoided. Candy and other sugary snacks and/or foods can cause tooth decay, so keep those to a minimum.

Drink soda, Kool-Aid and other sugary beverages only once a day. Also, avoid nail biting, and chewing on pencils and pens, and other items, as these could damage your braces.

Check your braces each day. If you notice a loose/broken wire or bracket, contact us to schedule a repair appointment.

Sore Teeth and Mouth

After your braces are placed, your teeth and mouth may feel sore and tender. This is normal. The brackets may even scratch your cheeks.

To relieve pain you can gargle with lukewarm saltwater (1 tsp. of salt in 8 ounces of water), or take acetaminophen or another non-aspirin pain medicine.

A heating pad or warm cloth can alleviate the soreness of your jaws. You can apply wax to the brackets to keep them from irritating your cheeks.

Loose Teeth

If you notice your teeth loosening, don’t panic! This is normal. Before moving into their corrected positions, teeth must loosen.

Loose Brackets/Bands

It is normal for a band or wire to come loose during treatment. If this happens, and the wire is sticking out or causing irritation, you can use the eraser of a pencil or the back of a spoon to gently push the wire under the archwire. Apply wax or wet cotton to the loose wire if it continues to irritate your mouth. Call us as soon as possible so we can set up a repair appointment. Do not throw away any part of your appliance that comes off. Save it and bring it to your appointment.

Caring for your Appliances

During orthodontic treatment, patient cooperation is essential. Wear your appliances as directed. If not, you will prolong your treatment.

Also, take care of your appliances. Don’t eat foods that can cause appliances to break. Broken appliances require more fees and additional appointments. In some cases, broken appliances can cause unwanted tooth movement, making treatment longer.

Athletes Wearing Braces

If you participate in any contact sport, we suggest you wear a mouthguard. We offer custom mouthguards that fit comfortably and provide the best protection. If you experience any trauma to the face, check for damages immediately. If you notice any damages to your appliance or loose teeth, schedule an appointment as soon as possible. While you’re waiting for your visit, you can take a non-aspirin pain medicine, such as acetaminophen for discomfort.