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How to survive the first week with braces – 5 expert tips from comfort to confidence
Kick-starting the braces journey is a momentous occasion resulting in a fantastic smile, straight teeth, and a healthy bite. Once you decide to resolve your dental issues, such as teeth spacing, bad bite, or misalignment, be prepared to receive your first set of metal braces or clear aligners (Invisalign).
The first week of braces is usually the most challenging of your braces journey. Our mouth takes some time to adjust to this new dental appliance consisting of a set of metal wires and brackets. But after a while, our body gets used to the braces hardware, and the rest of the journey becomes smooth and easy.
What to Expect During the First Week?
- After getting braces, most people get this funny feeling that their mouths and faces look different. They feel conscious of people’s gazes. One might even feel that they are talking in a funny manner due to brackets and wires inside the mouth.
Another common experience is the irritation of the soft tissues of the mouth (mainly lips and cheeks) from the braces hardware. During the first few weeks, the tongue, cheeks, and lips toughen up by adapting to the new environment, and this no longer remains troublesome. Some people initially experience mouth dryness as well.
- How to sail through the braces journey? Following are some of the tips that you should keep in mind, especially during the first week of this treatment.
One Should be Mentally Prepared
- Braces do not cause significant pain, but one should be mentally prepared for discomfort, sensitivity, or soreness, especially a few days after getting treatment. Patients should discuss these issues beforehand with their orthodontist. The good news is that these issues are temporary and usually go away after a few days or a week.
Take an Over-the-Counter Pain Reliever Before the Procedure
It is advisable to take Paracetamol or Ibuprofen for pain relief before the start of the procedure. This can significantly reduce pain and discomfort during and after the treatment.
Consume Soft Foods and Cold Drinks
- You can start eating as soon as you leave the dentist, but consuming soft foods that do not require excessive biting and chewing is highly recommended. The mouth and teeth are adjusting to braces, so the foods that help include pasta, plain bread, soft veggies, pudding, soup, yogurt, etc. Chewing gum can also help with soreness, but one should avoid taking sugary gum. The soreness will go away within a couple of days, after which you can proceed to consuming solid foods.
Use Dental Wax Regularly and Rinse with Saltwater
- Brackets can cause irritation and soreness; hence, use the dental wax thrice daily to ease discomfort. Another easy home remedy to relieve soreness is rinsing your mouth with a solution of warm salt water – five or six times daily for 30 seconds each time.
Practice Good Oral Hygiene
- Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and clean your teeth after every meal. It is important to maintain good oral hygiene, which includes brushing your teeth twice a day and flossing regularly.
Undoubtedly, the first week will be the most daunting experience of the entire braces journey. But being mentally and physically prepared can aid in this time.
- Contact Icon Dental Orthodontics today to schedule an appointment for your orthodontic needs in Seattle or Everett. Our expert dentists are dedicated to providing the best orthodontic treatment, from prevention and diagnosis to treatment and beyond. Trust us to help you achieve a healthier, more beautiful smile. For consultations or bookings, call us at (206) 225-2882 for Seattle and (425) 337-2400 for Everett appointments.