7 Tips for helping you through the first week of your braces

The hardest part of getting dental braces is making it through your first week. This is when your body is beginning to get used to that strange, new metal in your mouth. You could also experience some degree of soreness and discomfort during the first week after inserting your braces. However, it is reassuring to know that once you get past the first week you are well on the way to get a beautifully straight smile.

While today’s dental braces are far smaller, streamlined, and comfortable than in the past, there is still an adjustment period that you will need to get through for your braces to become a part of you. In this article, we’ll give you 7 tips to help you through the first week of your braces…

  1. Get used to slight discomfort on the first day: While dental braces typically do not hurt, they may cause some minor discomfort. This sensitivity to the braces in your mouth is mild and goes away in a few days. If you do experience discomfort or pain, you can take an over-the-counter (OTC) pain reliever prior to your dental appointment for adjustment of your braces and especially during the first week. This should work well to combat any sensitivity you may be feeling due to your braces. 
  2. Stock up on and eat braces-friendly food and drink: For the first week after inserting your braces, you should stick with soft foods and cold drinks and be careful what you eat. These soft foods and drinks include smoothies, mashed potatoes, yogurt, soup, pudding, ice cream, applesauce, and iced water. If you drink cold beverages they have the added advantage of numbing your mouth. Once you are used to your braces you can go back to eating the foods you love. However, try not to eat hard, sticky, or chewy foods, such as caramel, toffee, popcorn, hard bagels, nuts, pizza crust, and tough meats. In short, any food that can damage your braces. You should also not bite directly into certain foods, such as apples and carrots. You can, instead, cut the foods into small bite-sized pieces and chew them with your back teeth.
  3. Use a saltwater rinse and orthodontic relief wax: During your first week with dental braces, you may experience some degree of irritation on the inside of your cheeks and lips. After a while, your mouth will toughen up and your brackets and wires will not bother you anymore. During the first week, you can relieve the irritation with a saltwater rinse. You can add a teaspoon of salt to a glass of warm water and swish it around in your mouth before spitting it out. You can also repeat this as many times a day as you need to, as your mouth can get dry. You can also take a small piece of warm orthodontic wax between your fingers and place it on the areas of the braces that are uncomfortable.
  4. Get used to brushing and flossing with braces: Brushing and flossing around the brackets and wires will seem strange at first. However, it is imperative to maintain good oral hygiene after inserting your braces. Using a soft-bristled toothbrush and moderate pressure, you should brush your teeth in the morning, after meals, and before bed for at least three minutes for each session. You should use non-whitening fluoride toothpaste. You should also floss daily using an orthodontic flosser if needed. You can and should floss between any set of teeth and also floss up and down the side of each tooth all the way up to your gums before moving on to the next set of teeth. You can also use tools such as interproximal brushes for brushing around your brackets and under the wires. Other tools, such as a Waterpik can be used for reaching into the nooks and crannies. These tools leave your teeth sparkling clean.
  5. Do not panic if your teeth feel loose: After inserting braces, especially during the first week, your teeth may feel loose. This can cause you to panic. However, this is completely normal and there is no danger of your teeth falling out. The teeth are getting adjusted and have to loosen so that they can move into their new positions. When your treatment is over, your teeth will lock into place. 
  6. Learn how to handle braces emergencies: While a true braces emergency is extremely rare, there could be situations such as minor mishaps and discomfort that you need to manage at home. Some of these minor mishaps include soreness, a broken or loose braces bracket, and a poking wire. You can deal with soreness by sticking with soft foods and cold drinks. You can also use a saltwater rinse or an OTC pain reliever if you still experience discomfort. To deal with a broken or loose braces bracket, you should put it gently back into place in your mouth and schedule an appointment with your orthodontist right away to fix it. To deal with a poking wire, you should use a clean cotton swab to push it out of the way and against the nearest tooth. You can dry it off with some tissue and then cover it with orthodontic wax before scheduling an appointment with your dentist.
  7. Do not forget your mouthguard: If you are an athlete you need to wear a mouthguard to protect your face and braces when you are playing any sport. It should be part of your routine at all times, but especially when you are wearing braces and especially so during the first week. Your mouthguard will prevent irritation and lacerations if you get hit in the face. It will also prevent damage to your braces and prevent you from losing or damaging your teeth. A custom mouthguard will give you the most protection with the best fit.

During your first week with your dental braces, you may feel a bit strange. After all, your lips and tongue are not used to sharing space with wires and brackets. You may also feel that you look different. However, this feeling will pass quite quickly and you will barely notice your braces after a while. And if it helps, try to focus on the end result and visualize your wonderful smile once you are done with braces. This can really help you deal with the discomfort.

Because your braces are going to be a part of your mouth and body for some time, it is essential that you choose the right orthodontist to fix your braces. At Vistadent, the Orthodontic Speciality Clinic, we specialize in fitting braces. We work with each patient individually and holistically depending on the contours of their mouth and the alignment of their teeth.

We will fit you with the braces you need and ensure minimal discomfort during that vital first week after fitting. We will also follow up with several appointments during the period that you have the braces, as also treat you promptly for any side effects or discomfort that you may experience. 

So, if you are planning on fitting braces and are unsure where to go, do think about Vistadent and come away with a superior and relatively painless experience. Here’s to that perfect smile!

For more information about braces or any other dental problems, as well as other dental procedures, contact Vistadent, the Orthodontic Speciality Clinic, at 040-23388111 or +91 9866572482 or at info@vistadent.net or visit our website at http://vistadent.net/.

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