Traditional metal braces use small brackets that are affixed to your teeth with an specially designed oral cement. These brackets hold thin wires in place that apply gentle but constant pressure on your teeth to shift them into proper alignment. These wires are minutely adjusted over time to gently guide teeth into the proper placement and alignment within your mouth.
Although braces don’t hurt, for the first couple days after getting braces, you may feel a slight discomfort as your teeth and mouth begin adjusting.
Caring For Braces
When you have braces, it is vital to brush your teeth around four (4) to five (5) times a day. Food has a tendency to get stuck in the small crevices between your teeth and brackets, so brushing after every meal will help remove particles and debris.
What you choose to eat will directly affect the condition of your teeth during orthodontic treatment in Summerhill. Here are some tips on what kinds of foods to avoid, and how to carefully enjoy some of your favorites.
With braces, it can be difficult to chew certain foods. Foods that are too hard or crunchy can be harmful to braces because they can bend wires and even displace brackets. Avoid them entirely during the first couple weeks of having your braces, since teeth are the most tender at this stage. Also, be sure to avoid them after having your wires changed or any damage repaired.
Tips for eating hard foods:
- Fruits are an essential part of a balanced diet, but some are hard to bite into. If you want to eat apples, pears and peaches, do not bite directly into them. Instead, cut them into small pieces before consuming.
- Nuts can still be enjoyed with braces, but use care. If you enjoy eating almonds, cashews or peanuts, consider grinding them and mixing them with cereals and yogurt.
- While eating chicken wings or ribs, remove the bones before eating them. This keeps you from accidentally chewing on a bone and dislocating a bracket.
- While eating corn, remove the kernels from the cob to keep them from getting stuck between your teeth or inside the brackets.
- Avoid chewing on ice. You can suck on ice cubes but never bite them.
Sticky and Sweet Foods
Sticky foods have a tendency to get stuck in your teeth and braces, and can even result in the braces getting pulled off. What’s more, sweet and sugary foods are high in sugar and can lead to tooth decay if overindulged in.
If you enjoy eating candy, eat it in moderation. It’s also preferred to suck on candy rather than chew on it to prevent damage to your braces. Be sure to rinse your mouth with water to avoid sugar buildup on your teeth.
Avoid chewing gum above all else. Gum can stick to braces and may be difficult to clean off. It can also loosen the wires and brackets.
Be sure to contact Iconic Orthodontics with any questions about braces.