Life with Braces

At NTOA we want your smile to last a lifetime, and having perfect occlusion (a good bite) is the way to make this happen. Now that you’ve started your orthodontic journey, you’ll need to take special care of your braces and appliances so they can efficiently and effectively. If you ever have questions about taking care of your braces, you can always call our orthodontists at our  West Allen, FriscoMcKinney, or Plano orthodontic offices.

Eating with Braces

You may be surprised by what you can eat with braces, and how short the “no-no” list of food is! However, before you can go back to enjoying some of the treats you love, you will need to take special care to avoid any foods that could damage your new appliances. This generally includes everything that is very sticky or hard.

Foods to avoid with braces:

  • Chewy foods — bagels, licorice
  • Crunchy foods — popcorn, chips
  • Sticky foods — Soup Patch candies, chewing gum
  • Hard foods — nuts, hard candies, ice

Foods that require biting into (corn on the cob, apples, carrots, etc.) can be eaten if they are cut into small, bite-sized pieces first.

Foods you CAN eat with braces:

  • 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

Brushing with Braces

Brushing and flossing your teeth when you have braces is not difficult, but it may be more time consuming. Brush your teeth like normal, paying close attention to the areas underneath the wires and at the gum line. We also recommend using a Sonicare™ toothbrush which makes it very easy to keep your teeth clean during your treatment.

Take Care of Your Braces and Appliances

Damaged appliances can increase the length of your treatment process, so be sure to take care of all your appliances. Your teeth and jaw can only move into their correct positions if you consistently wear the rubber bands, headgear, retainer, or other appliances.

It is also necessary to wear a mouthguard to protect your braces while playing sports. In case of a sports emergency, be sure to immediately check your mouth and appliance for damage. If you notice any loose teeth or appliance damage, please contact one of our North Texas orthodontic offices right away. You can temporarily relieve the discomfort by applying wax or rinsing your mouth with warm saltwater.

Soreness Caused from Braces and Appliances

Your teeth may be sore for a few days after your braces are placed and after your adjustment appointments. You may take an over the counter pain reliever like Tylenol or Advil to alleviate any discomfort.

Loose Teeth

If your teeth begin feeling a little loose, don't worry; this is normal! Your braces must first loosen your teeth to move them into the right position. Once we remove your braces, your teeth will become firm and stable in their new positions.