No matter whether your teenage son or daughter is getting braces or if you've opted to get braces in your adult years, they take a bit of getting used to. You certainly will get accustomed to them eventually, but there are a few things you need to be aware of while this happens.
Some Initial Discomfort Is Normal
Some pain in the days immediately after receiving your braces is very common. You will very likely find it very uncomfortable to bite down on food as your teeth adjust to the new pressure placed on them. This pain will soon go away and you'll be able to chew normally again. However, if your braces are causing intense jaw pain and/or headaches, then see your dentist as soon as possible. The braces might need a very small adjustment which can be taken care of quickly. For any minor discomfort, an over-the-counter painkiller will do the trick.
Your Bite Will Change
You may notice a difference in your bite almost immediately as the braces begin to get to work. Your bite will begin to align correctly, and this takes some getting used to. It's the braces doing what they're supposed to, so it's not a cause for alarm. Visit your dentist if your jaw repeatedly becomes stiff. Again, a small adjustment might be needed.
Trapped Food Is Inevitable
No matter how carefully you eat, you are likely to get food trapped in between your braces and your teeth. It's practically unavoidable! Do a spot check in the mirror each time after you eat. It's more of a potentially embarrassing situation rather than a dental problem, but it could certainly become somewhat of a problem if left unchecked. A piece of food trapped next to a natural tooth can cause bad breath as it begins to degrade. You should get into the habit of bringing a toothbrush, toothpaste, and a small bottle of mouthwash (check with your dentist for the best brand to use with your braces) with you. This allows you to clean your teeth and remove any debris after each time you eat, no matter whether you're at work, university, or a social occasion.
Dental Wax Is Your Friend
The inside of your mouth will need to adjust to the sensation of metal rubbing against your inner cheeks and lips. This adjustment can take a little time, and the sensitivity can reoccur from time to time with sports or even due to your sleeping position. Dental wax is your best friend to deal with this sensitivity. A small amount of dental wax can be dabbed onto the braces where a sharp edge might be causing sensitivity. The wax is self-adhesive, so it will stay in place, and only a tiny amount is needed. It's a good idea to keep some dental wax on hand at all times, just in case it should ever be needed.
Just think of how beautiful your smile will be when the braces have done their work, not to mention the symmetry of your bite and how this will put less stress on your jaws. It's certainly worth it, even if you need to get used to looking in the mirror after you eat! If you would like to have a new smile, look for braces in your local area.