First Day in Braces

The adhesive used for attaching the braces to your teeth cures rapidly initially but takes 24 hours to complete cure.  Yon can eat anytime after leaving our office, however, we ask that you be mindful of suggested eating list for food that may be harmful to braces.  Until you become accustomed to eating with your new braces, you may find it beneficial to follow a diet consisting of soft food.

Will the braces cause discomfort?

Initially the braces will feel like they “stick out.”  This is normal.  As you become accustomed to your braces and tooth alignment improves, this sensation will cease to be a concern.  Although the brackets have been rounded and smoothed, until the cheek tissues have “toughened,” you may find it helpful to use a small piece of orthodontic wax around the bracket that is creating the irritation.  If your supply of wax runs out, call our office for more.  The wax may also be purchased at a local drug store.

You may notice some discomfort beginning a few hours after your braces are placed.  Some teeth, usually the front teeth, may be “tender” and sensitive to pressure.  Occasionally, patients report that they experience no discomfort, but most patients have some soreness during the first eight hours and dissipating in 2-7 days.  Exactly when the discomfort ceases is impossible to predict and differs with each patient.  Non-prescription pain remedies are recommended for discomfort, such as Tylenol or Ibuprofen.  For maximum effectiveness, it may be best to take such medications before the discomfort begins.

Before leaving the office

There are routine steps that we ask you to take prior to leaving the office.  These steps will minimize discomfort related to irritation from the braces and ensure an optimal response to treatment.  Please make these steps a part of each office visit:

  1. Using your finger and tongue, check that the wire ends do not extend into areas which might poke or cut the tongue or cheek.
  2. Make sure you understand what you are to do until your next appointment.  This could include wearing headgear or elastics as instructed, activating and expander or following specific hygiene or diet instructions.
  3. Make sure you have an adequate supply of orthodontic wax, special cleaning aids, elastic bands or other related materials you may need between appointments.
  4. Always schedule your next appointment before leaving the office.  Waiting 1 or 2 weeks after an appointment to schedule your next office visit complicates the scheduling process, since appointments are scheduled weeks in advance.  Postponing appointments is a common contributor to extended treatment.
  5. Make sure that your questions about treatment are answered.  Treatment goes better when everyone understands the treatment process.  We encourage parents to accompany their children to their appointments, allowing us the opportunity to update you on treatment progress.

braces diagram