Orthodontic braces can correct bite issues and teeth alignment problems. Many children and even adults use braces to straighten their smile. Gone are the days when your only choice was traditional metal braces.
There are now lots of options for orthodontic systems available. The one you choose will depend on the severity of your issue, your lifestyle and your budget. Read on to find out what else you need to consider before getting braces and what to do once they are fitted.
Before Getting Braces
- Choose The Right Orthodontist
There are a few things to consider when choosing an orthodontist such as their experience, do they offer extended hours, is the service personalized and who oversees your treatment?
Don’t be afraid to book a consultation at more than one practice and ask lots of questions. The more informed you are about your dental health, the better you will understand your dental issues and how to treat them.
- Get Dental Work Done
Before getting braces fitted, schedule a professional cleaning and a dental exam so you begin your treatment in good dental health. If you have severe overcrowding, your orthodontist may suggest removing one or more permanent teeth to make room for your other teeth to fit comfortably. Your dentist may also recommend getting your wisdom teeth extracted pre-braces, so they don’t impact your smile and your bite once they erupt.
- Be Prepared For Some Temporary Pain
You may initially experience mild discomfort because the brackets will rub against the soft tissue inside your mouth. Use orthodontic wax to cover the brackets and to prevent irritation. The pressure from the wires can also be uncomfortable especially initially and after an adjustment. This is actually a good sign because it means teeth are shifting, and the braces are doing their job.
Your cosmetic dentist in Ormskirk may prescribe over-the-counter painkillers to alleviate discomfort or recommend rinsing your mouth with salt water to help your sores heal. Also, stick to soft foods when you are first fitted with braces and for a day or two after a wire adjustment.
- Take A Before Selfie
Orthodontic treatment can be a long process. Take a before selfie so you don’t forget how much your smile has improved when reveal day rolls around.
Things To Do After Getting Braces
- Cleaning Is Crucial
Thoroughly cleaning your teeth while wearing braces is critical because food particles can become trapped in the small spaces in your brackets. Poor oral hygiene can cause cavities, bad breath, gum disease and decalcification or white spots.
Your dentist may suggest booking more frequent professional hygiene cleanings while you are undergoing orthodontic treatment to ensure your teeth and gums are clean.
- Improve Your Brushing
Brushing your teeth while wearing braces takes some time and effort because it is essential to get all around the brackets and under the wires to eliminate all traces of plaque.
A soft-bristled toothbrush can easily access the small crevices on the brackets. Hold it at a 45°-angle above and below the brackets to ensure you are reaching all the spaces and along your gum line. Be careful not to apply too much pressure on the braces because you can damage them.
Always carry a travel toothbrush and toothpaste so you can brush after you eat. If you are unable to brush immediately drink some water to help remove food debris from your brackets.
Flossing after you eat is encouraged to help remove food particles trapped between teeth.
Flossing with braces has to be done carefully. Thread the floss under the wire between every bracket to floss. Alternatively consider using threaders, interdental brushes or a Waterpik. Using too much force when flossing can damage the braces.
- Adjust Your Diet
You’ll need to protect your orthodontic appliances when you eat for as long as you wear braces. Some foods can damage brackets, so you will need to adjust your diet. Sticky, crunchy or chewy foods like popcorn, gum, and nuts can make damage your brackets and arch wires. Foods you need to bite like corn on the cob, carrots, and apples should also be avoided. Cut them into small bite-sized pieces instead.
The Northway Dental Practice is a well equipped and reputable dental clinic located in Ormskirk, England. Dr. Andrew Crosby and Dr. Priyal Crosby are highly experienced in the area of cosmetic and conservative dentistry.