9179 Mentor Avenue, Unit K | Mentor, OH 44060 | (440) 205-1222 · 26300 Euclid Avenue, Suite 610 | Euclid, OH 44132 | (216) 261-9121
Life With Braces
Your braces will be attached quickly and easily to your teeth without any pain. The adhesives take 24 hours to fully set, so it is a good idea to eat soft foods during this period. Also, for those patients involved in contact sports, our office will supply you with special mouth guards upon request.
Several hours after the initial placement of the braces, your teeth will be tender or sensitive to pressure. This is completely normal and will go away in several days. To alleviate most of the discomfort, we recommend the following:
- Ibuprofen, every 4-6 hours
- soft food diet
- warm salt water rinses
- orthodontic wax*
*The braces may irritate the inside of the cheeks for the first several days. Don’t worry, calluses (thickening of the tissue) will form and the irritation will be gone. In the meantime, use the orthodontic wax as needed. The wax may also be used for long wires, broken wires, or broken brackets if needed.
Throughout your orthodontic treatment, especially following an adjustment, you may experience discomfort. This will not last as long as when the braces were initially placed. Using any or all of the above mentioned treatments will alleviate the discomfort.
Breakage of 1 or 2 brackets throughout treatment is common. If a bracket becomes loose and you have an appointment scheduled in the next couple of weeks, this usually can wait until then as long as you are experiencing no discomfort.
Your braces are attached to your teeth with a strong adhesive, but may become loose as a result of eating certain foods. It is also possible that wires could become bent or broken. As a result of these disruptions, your treatment will take longer and the desired goal of treatment may not be achieved. Patients should avoid foods that are sticky and chewy. The foods below are known to cause breakage of orthodontic appliances and are examples of what NOT to eat:
- Beef jerky
- Hard candies
- Laffy Taffy
- Twizzlers (licorice)
Fruits and vegetables such as apples, carrots, and celery should be cut into small, thin slices. Snacks such as corn chips and nuts should be eaten one at a time. Gum should be limited to once or twice a week at most. The least amount of gum chewing, the better. Breakage of the braces and distortion and weakening of the archwires will result in extra visits for repair and extended treatment time. Any specific questions regarding food choices should be directed to the clinicians.