The following is a list of instructions to help you look after your fixed braces. To ensure your treatment runs efficiently please keep all of your appointments.
It is normal for your teeth to ache for 3-5 days after the brace has been fitted – painkillers such a paracetamol will help. Each time the brace is adjusted it may also be sore for 1-2 days.
It takes a while to get used to the feel of the brace and initially you may get discomfort and ulceration. A gel for mouth ulcers and orthodontic wax will help. To use the orthodontic wax, break a little piece off, roll it into a ball and stick it to the brace. This will act as a temporary barrier until the ulcer heals.
Hard and sticky foods
Initially you will have to eat very soft foods as the teeth may be sore and the glue may not be fully set. Once everything has settled down, it is necessary to avoid certain food such as; apples, raw carrots, crusty bread rolls, hard and chewy sweets, nuts etc. These may break your brace and prolong your treatment.
Staining of the teeth
Your teeth are at risk of marking/staining during your treatment if you are not careful. This can be caused by a combination of leaving plaque on the teeth and snacking on sugary food and drinks. Neglect will cause swelling and bleeding of your gums, tooth decay and marking/staining of the teeth around the brackets.
Once the brace is fitted you will need to spend more time cleaning your teeth. You must clean them after each meal and use an inter-brace brush once a day to clean underneath the wire. We will demonstrate good brushing and then it is up to you to maintain a high standard of brushing.
The orthodontist will remove your braces before treatment is complete if your oral hygiene is poor.
Fluoride mouth rinse
Fluoride strengthens the surface of the teeth and helps prevent marks during treatment. Use an alcohol free, fluoride mouth rinse such as fluoriguard or swirl once a day for one minute and do not rinse with water after use. Ideally, use this at a different time to brushing. An orthodontic cleaning kit is available at reception which contains mouth rinse, wax, interbrace brush and a travel toothbrush.
If your brace breaks, it will likely to increase the length of treatment. You will need an extra visit to have the brace repaired, which will involve you, and your orthodontist additional time. Following our instructions can avoid this.
Remember that you should continue to visit your own dentist for a regular check-up and any necessary treatment during your orthodontic treatment.