Orthodontic treatment requires specific care to maintain healthy teeth and gums and having ideal results. At Laguna Niguel Orthodontics, we want our patients to have the best outcome and improved dental health, therefore we take the time at each visit to monitor the patient’s home care status and educate them in how to improve for optimum oral health.
Brackets, bands, and wires are part of a system Dr. Majd uses to move the teeth with control and in a specific direction to achieve ideal results of perfect teeth and healthy bite. These little devices do a lot of hard work, but they’re not invincible. It’s important to take care of all parts of your braces to ensure your treatment stays on-time and is as successful as possible. This means avoiding some types of food and practicing good oral hygiene at home.
Eating with Braces
As a general rule, applying too much force to the braces (biting into hard or sticky foods) can break the glue (bond) that holds braces in place and once loose, the brace will not function as it is supposed to and can cause delays in the progress of orthodontic treatment.
Carbonated (acidic) drinks, high-sugar and sticky snacks, and crunchy and crusty foods or bread can lead to damage or loosening of the braces. You’ll need to avoid the foods listed below, and generally use caution when it comes to food choices.
These foods are to be avoided during orthodontic treatment:
- Chewy foods — bagels, licorice
- Crunchy foods — popcorn, chips, ice
- Sticky foods — caramel candies, chewing gum
- Hard foods — nuts, hard candies
- Foods that require biting into — corn on the cob, apples, carrots
Keeping your teeth clean with a good mouth hygiene routine is very important during orthodontic treatment, as is keeping regular hygiene appointments with your general dentist. Damage to the teeth and gums can happen with poor oral hygiene and/or if treatment is not supervised regularly. At Laguna Niguel orthodontics, your dental health is our first priority and we take every possible step to help you maintain or improve your dental health during the course of your orthodontic treatment.
To brush your teeth with braces, move and rotate the brush around the brackets and try to reach under the wire to clean the teeth thoroughly. There are specific types of toothbrushes for braces, but any kind of toothbrush can do the job as long as it is used properly. Electric or battery powered toothbrushes and waterpik are helpful tools as well as special flossers for braces and Flouride mouthwash that aids with cavity prevention and protection of the enamel of your teeth. We always provide you with the information and the tools you need for care of your teeth and braces. Cleaning around braces and under the wire is the biggest challenge, but with time and practice, it does get easier!
Soreness and Discomfort
You may experience some soreness or discomfort during treatment, this is normal and should subside within a few days after activation of your braces. The physical presence of braces or aligners/attachments can be irritating to the tender tissues inside the mouth for a few days until you get used to these new things!
Also, as the teeth need to be pushed into their aligned positions, the body's reaction to this process includes inflammation and pain that is mild and mostly upon chewing for one to two days after adjustment visits. Generally, the degree of pain associated with orthodontic treatment is mild and occasionally requires over the counter pain medications like Advil, Ibuprofen, or Tylenol.