Your dentist has recommended you get braces, but you’re not sure what to expect. How do they feel? Do they hurt? What happens when you get them tightened? Braces can be different for everyone, but there are some things that remain standard for this treatment. Read below for some insight into what you may expect from the day they are placed to your first adjustment.
If your back teeth are too close together, your dentist may put spacers made from rubber bands or metal between them a week or two before receiving your braces. Doing this pushes your teeth forward, making it easier for your braces to fit properly. When it’s time to get your braces placed, it will typically take your dentist one to two hours to do it. This process can be a bit uncomfortable, due to having to keep your mouth open for long periods of time. During your appointment, your dentist will dry your teeth and glue each bracket to the center of each tooth. You may feel pressure as the brackets are placed, but it is not painful. The final step is connecting the brackets with archwires. When this process is complete, you may want to stick to soft foods for the first few days until you get used to this new device.
Wearing braces can be a pretty significant adjustment. As your teeth begin the alignment process, it’s common to feel some slight aching and pressure. This is because they are slowly but surely starting to straighten your teeth. Rinsing with warm salt water and taking some over-the-counter pain relievers can help you manage any discomfort. If your braces create mouth sores, your dentist can show you how to place wax over the metal area that is causing them. Oral gels and creams can also provide instant relief.
Your New Normal
Now that you’ve started your treatment, you will visit your doctor about every 6 weeks to have your braces readjusted. During this visit, the rubber bands that hold the brackets to the archwires will be removed, followed by the archwires themselves. Next, your doctor will examine your progress and let you know whether you need new wires or if your old ones are working well. Once they are placed into your brackets, new rubber ligatures will be added to hold everything together. If this is your first tightening experience, you may feel some discomfort. Medication like ibuprofen or acetaminophen can help provide pain relief.
Keeping your teeth healthy during your treatment is important. Be sure to brush and floss after every meal and try to avoid foods that may get stuck in or damage your braces. Getting used to your new braces may take time, but the results you get will definitely be worth it!
About the Author
The team of dentists at the Texas Dentistry in Mesquite are committed to providing you and your family with a positive experience. Drs. Anne Lindley, Thanh Tran, Yosuk Lee, and Victoria DeLeon are all members of key organizations, including the American Dental Association, the American Academy of Pediatric Dentistry and more. If you or your child is in need of braces, contact the office at (972) 329-4200 or visit the website to learn more.