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Helpful Tips

Hygiene With Braces

  • Use a soft-bristled toothbrush with a small head. Electric and sonic toothbrushes are also acceptable.
  • Brush your teeth after meals and snacks.
  • If having eaten while away from home, use your interdental brush to dislodge any food that may get caught around your braces.
  • Rinse with water to dislodge food from your braces and to keep sugar from sitting on your teeth.
  • Floss your teeth at least once a day.
  • Have a checkup with your dentist every 6 months.
  • Limit consumption of pop, juices, and sports drinks as they may cause white spots and cavities.

A Few Extra Tips

Soreness caused from braces and appliances.

When you first get your braces, you may notice that your teeth and mouth feel a little tender or sore. This is perfectly normal for patients who have just gotten their braces put on, and we promise your mouth will not be sore forever! To relieve the pain, we recommend dissolving one teaspoon of salt in eight ounces of lukewarm water. Swish and gargle this solution in your mouth for just a couple of minutes (do not swallow the saltwater).

If the pain is more severe and does not go away after rinsing, you can also try taking a pain reliever. It is also not uncommon for your lips, cheeks, and tongue to become irritated for one to two weeks as they toughen and become used to the braces. We would be happy to give you some wax that you can put over the braces to lessen the tenderness. If you need some wax, please let us know!

Loose Teeth

If your teeth begin feeling a little loose, don’t worry; this is normal! Your braces must first loosen your teeth in order to move them into the right position. Once your teeth have been repositioned, they will no longer be loose.

Loose Wires and Bands

The wires and bands on your braces may come loose. If this happens, please contact us as soon as possible so that we can check and repair your appliance. If any piece of your appliance comes off, be sure to save it and bring it to the office with you.

You can temporarily fix the loose wire by using the back of a spoon or the eraser end of a pencil to push the wire back carefully and gently into place. If the loose wire is causing irritation to your lips or cheeks, put wax or a wet cotton ball over the broken wire to relieve the pain.

Appliance Care

Damaged appliances can increase the length of your treatment process, so be sure to take care of all your appliances. Your teeth and jaw can only move into their correct positions if you consistently wear rubber bands, headgear, retainer, or other appliances prescribed by your doctor.

Playing Sports with Braces

Game, Set, Match – we have great news for athletes! You can still play sports even while undergoing orthodontic treatment! If you do play sports, it’s recommended that you wear a mouthguard to protect your teeth and your appliances. Let your doctor know if you need help finding the right mouthguard for the best protection.

In case of a sports emergency, be sure to immediately check your mouth and your appliance for any damage that may have occurred. If you notice any loose teeth, or if your appliance has been damaged, please contact our office right away. You can temporarily relieve the discomfort with wax or by rinsing your mouth with warm saltwater. You can repeat this several times a day for the first few days.