Is this your first week with braces? Exciting, nerve-wracking, and full of adjustments. It’s natural to feel a little overwhelmed. You might be wondering how to deal with braces – Don’t worry. This blog post is here to help patients who are about to get braces or have gotten them recently. Keep reading!
From the moment you walk into your orthodontist’s office, you are on the path to a beautiful and healthy smile. But getting braces the first time isn’t always a smooth ride. During your first week with braces, there are some essential things to remember that can help you stay comfortable and on track.
Braces are a big commitment. You want to do everything possible to get the best results. Here are 10 things you need to know about your first week with braces to get you off to a great start.
1. Be Fully Prepared Before Leaving the Clinic
When you leave the orthodontics clinic with your braces, you must be equipped with proper braces aftercare instructions and supplies. For instance, you can ask for bite blocks for braces. Bite blocks are small, spongy devices designed to fit over your braces and help keep your teeth in place. They protect your teeth and make the transition to braces easier.
2. Apply Orthodontic Wax to Deal With Sores
Your mouth might be a bit sore after getting braces. That’s normal, and it mostly lasts for a few days only. To help ease this braces pain of the first week, use orthodontic wax. This wax is designed to stick to braces and provide a cushion between your braces and your lips, cheeks, and gums.
3. Be Prepared for a Different Look & Feel of Your Face and Mouths
Braces can cause discomfort in your face and mouth for a few days. You might also feel your mouth is bigger and your lips sticking out. But that is because of initial swelling. This is normal, and it should go away after a few days. Make sure to follow your orthodontist’s advice on reducing discomfort.
4. Your Mouth Can Get Dry
Braces can also cause your mouth to get dry. Keep drinking plenty of water and avoid sugary and acidic drinks. This will help keep your mouth hydrated, and it will also help prevent bacteria from building up around your braces.
5. Consume Braces-Friendly Food and Drinks Only
Having braces doesn’t mean you have to give up all your favorite foods and drinks. But it means you need to be more careful about what you eat and drink. Stick to soft foods like mashed potatoes, oatmeal, and smoothies. And you should avoid hard and crunchy foods like popcorn, nuts, and chips.
6. Embrace Saltwater Rinses
When you make a checklist of “what to do after getting braces,” saltwater rinses come at the top. Mix a teaspoon of salt with a cup of warm water and swish it around in your mouth for 30 seconds. Do it a few times a day. Saltwater rinses are a great way to reduce bacteria build-up around your braces and keep your mouth clean with braces.
7. Learn How to Handle Braces Emergencies
One of the most important things to know during your first week with braces is what to do in an emergency. You can make a handy emergency kit with basics like wax, floss, and extra elastics. Don’t forget to keep it in your purse or backpack whenever you go out. Always call your orthodontist as soon as possible if any mishap happens.
8. Take care of Your Oral Hygiene
Taking care of your teeth and braces is essential during the first week with braces. Make sure to brush after every meal and floss once a day. Good oral hygiene is integral to braces aftercare, which orthodontists strongly recommend.
9. Brush With a Soft Bristle Toothbrush
It’s important to use a soft-bristled toothbrush when you have braces. It will help ensure you don’t damage your braces or irritate your gums. Using a good quality toothbrush is also important to get the job done right. This is not a thing to do only during the first week of braces. You must continue using a soft-bristled toothbrush till you have braces.
10. Focus on the Ultimate Outcome
Don’t forget that you’re on a journey with your braces, and the result will be worth it! Keep your eyes on the prize and focus on the beautiful smile you’ll have when your braces come off.
Getting braces can seem overwhelming at first. And you may spend a lot of time thinking about how to get used to braces. But it’s not so bad once you get the hang of it. Just remember to take care of your braces, practice good oral hygiene, and stay focused on the result. With a little bit of patience and dedication, you’ll have a beautiful smile in no time!
Dr. Satish Pai is an orthodontist and Ivy League-trained dentist who has served as a faculty at Columbia University. He believes a perfect smile makes a person look great and feel great. As the founder of Putnam Orthodontics and a Partner at Brite Orthodontics, he is dedicated to providing the best orthodontic treatments to his patients. He also writes to educate people about orthodontics, the importance of correctly aligned teeth, and good oral health. In his free time, you can find him golfing, doing yoga or surfing, and spending time with his family.