What to expect during your first week of braces

When you first get your braces on, you may have questions about how to care for them properly.  There are a few simple rules that will make your first week of braces successful.

How to Prepare

The best way to prepare for a successful first week in braces and beyond is to have a few items on hand prior to your appointment.  First and foremost you will want to have soft foods like hearty soups, pastas and ingredients for nutritious protein shakes or smoothies.  You may also want to have your preferred Ibuprofen or Acetaminophen readily available to assist with any soreness you may experience. Focusing on soft, brace-friendly foods will also help avoid broken brackets and appliances.

Foods to Eat

When it comes to orthodontic-friendly foods, SOFT is the thing to remember. Here are some great ideas:

  • Mashed potatoes
  • Mac and Cheese
  • Soup
  • Scrambled Eggs
  • Yogurt
  • Bananas
  • Oatmeal
  • Veggies cooked until they are soft
  • Soft fruits
  • Pasta (short noodles are easier than long one)
  • Protein shakes
  • Pudding
  • Soft breads (no crusts)
  • Flour Tortillas

Foods to Avoid

It’s important to avoid anything that is difficult to chew which may cause damage to your appliances or discomfort after braces are put on or tightened. Damaged and broken appliances and brackets can result in extended treatment times. Here is a list of foods to avoid throughout your treatment:

  • Nuts
  • Hard, chewy, or sticky candy
  • Uncooked, hard vegetables and fruits
  • Chips
  • Tough meats
  • Beef jerky
  • Granola
  • Bagels
  • Popcorn
  • Ice (in your drink is fine, but don’t chew it!)

Pain Management

It is pretty common to have some soreness after braces are put on or tightened. Generally, it takes a few days to get used to the pressure on your teeth. Usually, your preferred over the counter pain reliever will help. Some patients may also have a hard time adjusting to braces in the beginning because the brackets and wires may rub on their cheeks or gums. To help your mouth adjust, you can apply the orthodontic wax that will be provided to you at your appointment to create a barrier between the braces and the insides of your cheek.

Discomfort is Only Temporary!

The good news is that any pain or discomfort experienced after getting braces on or tightened is temporary and should only last a few days at the very most. If you feel the pain is excessive or experience any loose wires or broken brackets, be sure to contact us immediately. After a couple days of adjusting to braces you can move from soft foods to most of the foods you love, but remember to continue to avoid foods that may damage or break your orthodontic appliances.

Welcome to the exciting journey to your new smile!

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