Life with Braces
Once you have braces, life changes a bit. It isn’t too radical, but you will need to do certain things to accommodate your new appliance. Here are the basics to keep in mind.
Your Diet Will Change
Eating is a little tricky with braces. Many foods have the potential to damage your appliance, which can derail treatment and hurt your results. Below are the foods you should avoid while you have a fixed appliance:
- 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
Now, that does leave many foods you can eat, including:
- Dairy — soft cheese, pudding, milk-based drinks
- Breads — soft tortillas, pancakes, muffins without nuts
- Grains — pasta, soft cooked rice
- Meats/poultry — soft cooked chicken, meatballs, lunch meats
- Seafood — tuna, salmon, crab cakes
- Vegetables — mashed potatoes, steamed spinach, beans
- Fruits — applesauce, bananas, fruit juice
- Treats — ice cream without nuts, milkshakes, Jell-O, soft cake
Ultimately, it isn’t too hard to deal with, and before you know it, your braces will be off and you will be eating like normal again.
You Will Experience Soreness
Soreness or tenderness of the teeth is part of having braces—but luckily it does not last the entire time. This soreness is at its worst right after you first get your braces because your teeth must adjust to the forces caused by the appliance. This might last a few days, then come back for a few hours after each adjustment. Saltwater rinses help, as will an over-the-counter pain reliever. And should your appliance cause irritation of the mouth, continue with the rinses and add dental wax to the offending part of your braces.
You Will Have Loose Teeth
Your teeth are held in place by a series of ligaments. For your teeth to change position, these ligaments must become loose. And when they loosen up, so do your teeth. This can feel disconcerting, especially for teens and adults. However, it is vital to the process. Don’t worry—they will not fall out and they will not stay loose.
You Must Take Great Care When Playing Sports
With or without braces, your teeth can become injured when playing sports. However, with braces, things can get a lot worse. In addition to injured teeth, your appliance can cut your mouth in multiple spots and the appliance itself can become damaged, requiring expensive repair. Sports are still okay to play, but you will need a special mouthguard, which we are happy to make for you.