Life with Braces
Taking proper care of you braces is one of the most important things you can do to make your orthodontic treatment at Robinson Orthodontics a success. Here are some tips and tricks for living with braces.
Eating with Braces
When you have braces or orthodontic appliances there are some things that you should avoid. Ice, chewing on pens and pencils, nuts, power bars, jerky, gum, popcorn, hard or sticky candies, bagels, and chewy breads are some of the things that are particularly hard on braces. Remember, anything hard, sticky, gooey, or chewy should be avoided!
Foods and juices that have higher sugar content encourage tooth decay, which can interrupt your orthodontic treatment. Candy, cakes, and cookies are all part of that group. Please limit your soda intake; it is particularly bad. If you do choose to drink soda, use a straw. And remember to brush after all sugary foods.
It may seem like there is an endless list of things you can’t eat, but there are plenty of tasty, healthy foods that you can still enjoy. Braces are not a reason to not eat apples, raw celery, or raw carrots, just cut them up first. Corn on the cob is ok if you cut off the kernels—just don’t bite into it. When in doubt, cut the food into bite-sized pieces.
Be patient! Remember, braces are not forever… smiles are!
Your mouth and teeth may be tender for two or three days after each visit to our Grants Pass, OR orthodontic office. The medication you normally use for headaches may be used during this time. It is easier to deal with discomfort before it happens; we advise that you take the pain reliever before you visit. If you get a sore in your mouth from your braces rubbing, we recommend that you rinse your mouth with 1/2 teaspoon of salt in a glass of water (as warm as you can tolerate) before each meal.
Solving Issues at Home
You may be able to solve some braces problems temporarily until you can schedule a repair appointment at Robinson Orthodontics.
Loose Band or Bracket: If it is still attached to the wire, then leave it in its place. If it is uncomfortable, try using wax. If it comes out completely, save it, and schedule an appointment.
Loose Wire: Try to place the wire back in any of the holes in the band using tweezers. If that is not possible, or it does not stay, clip the wire with fingernail clippers behind the last tooth it is fastened to.
Poking Wire: Try using a spoon or eraser end of a pencil to gently bend the wire down. If not possible, try to cut the wire as above.
Retainers Not Fitting: Call our office as soon as possible.
Loose Appliances: If possible, leave it in place and call our office ASAP.
Brushing and Flossing
Oral Hygiene Toolkit
Dr. Robinson and our team have put together a kit that will help you maintain good oral hygiene. We want to help you establish good tooth-brushing habits that will last the rest of your life. It is also very important that you still see your general dentist for your three- or six-month checkups, whichever your dentist recommends.
In your kit you will find:
1. Toothbrushes — One is a travel toothbrush. We are giving you this one to take with you to school or work. The second one is a proxy brush for those hard-to-reach places. Pay attention and brush each individual tooth while looking in a mirror to make sure all surfaces are clean, especially around each bracket and under wire.
2. Floss threaders and floss — Flossing is very important! You pull the floss through the loop of the threader and pass the threader under the wire and floss each tooth.
3. Wax — Soften the wax up between your fingers, then apply to the area that hurts or is poking. The drier you can get the area where you need the wax, the better it will stay. You may need to apply the wax a few times. It might take a couple of days but that area of your mouth will get tougher.
4. Rinse — Using a fluoride rinse is extremely important during orthodontic treatment. We recommend using Phos-Flur twice daily.
As you know, you need to take time to brush your teeth properly, especially with braces on. It takes time and patience, but the end result is well worth it!