One of the most common misconceptions about braces is that they are painful to have put on and adjusted. While getting braces placed on your teeth is NOT painful, your gums and teeth will most likely be sore for a little bit. The discomfort after braces can last anywhere from a few days to a week. Discomfort or soreness after new braces is caused by your teeth and body adjusting. It is very likely that you can experience the braces rubbing against your gums and cheeks. The discomfort is usually mild and there are several things you can try to help any soreness. Try these tips to reduce discomfort and adjust to your new braces as quickly as possible ☺
USE ORTHODONTIC WAX
When your braces are put on or adjusted, our assistants will give you a special wax that can be applied to the braces to act as a barrier or band-aid, between the brackets and your cheeks and lips. Applying orthodontic wax to your gums, teeth, and braces can reduce discomfort while preventing gum irritation from the friction between your new braces and your mouth.
Simply break off a small piece of the wax and form a small mold with your fingers before applying it to any area where the bracket irritates your mouth. This wax is non-toxic, but remember to remove it before eating, brushing, or flossing. Apply more wax after each meal or as needed.
SALT WATER RINSES
Rinsing your mouth with warm salt water a few times a day can help heal sores and cuts on your cheeks and gums while reducing mild swelling and discomfort. Make a simple salt water rinse by mixing one teaspoon of table salt into a glass of warm water. Swish the rinse around in your mouth for about one minute before spitting it out.
ENJOY SOME COLD TREATS
Frozen or cold treats like popsicles and ice cream help numb the cheeks and gums to quickly reduce soreness. Frozen foods and ice can also reduce mild swelling in the gums.
MASSAGE YOUR GUMS
Whenever you feel discomfort, try rubbing your gums with an ice cube then rubbing your fingers gently over your gums. This can reduce swelling and numb your gums against mild pain.
AVOID CERTAIN FOODS
Some foods should be avoided when you have braces. Some of these foods can damage your braces while others can get stuck in the brackets or cause discomfort while chewing. The list of foods to avoid include:
▪ Gummy or sticky foods like taffy and soft caramel
▪ Foods with a tough texture or hard surface like apples and bagels
▪ Corn on the cob
▪ Chewing gum
▪ Ribs and beef jerky
▪ Raw carrots
Call Varghese Orthodontics to schedule your complimentary consultation with us in our North Aurora and Huntley areas today. Remember that every beautiful smile begins with healthy, straight teeth, and that is the goal of Dr. Varghese and our team at Varghese Orthodontics ☺