Guide To Your First Week in Braces

Getting braces is a big decision that will change your life for the better! At Dillehay Orthodontics, we ensure every patient feels completely prepared to take on their braces treatment after leaving their first appointment with a comprehensive guide to their first week in braces. Read on to learn more about how braces are placed, food recommendations, emergency care, and more!

The Braces Placement Process

During your initial appointment, placing braces on your teeth will take about an hour. Dr. JK will determine the best position for effective results and glue on your brackets. Though a painless procedure, our team will be around whenever you need us to ensure you are comfortable! You can expect a short adjustment period as you get used to your braces, but it shouldn’t last more than a week.

The length of your treatment will depend on the type of braces you choose, your current oral health, and your age. On average, it will last from one to three years. After your placement, we’ll schedule subsequent check-in appointments every four to eight weeks to ensure everything goes according to plan.

Fill Your Cabinets With Braces-Friendly Foods/Meals 

During your first week of braces, you may feel some minor discomfort as your teeth adjust to the slight pressure placed on them by your appliance. One of the most important things to learn early on is which foods are safe to eat and which are not. Eating the wrong foods can place additional pressure on your braces and potentially damage them. 

Choosing The Right Foods

There are plenty of soft, easy-to-chew foods you can stock up on and enjoy during your first week and throughout treatment. Some friendly choices include pasta, soups, steamed vegetables, well-cooked chicken, oranges, and eggs. Especially as your teeth adjust, the softer the food, the better!

On the other hand, anything that is hard, sticky, or you need to bite into will need to stay behind in your cabinet. For example, apples, crackers, popcorn, nuts, pizza crust, and bagels pose a challenge for braces-wearers. While you may be unable to eat your favorite food during treatment, this is a great time to try new meals you may have previously passed up.

Guide To Your First Week in Braces

Understand How To Deal With Braces Emergencies 

General Soreness

You will likely encounter a period where your teeth may feel sore after getting your braces or after an adjustment, but braces themselves are not a painful appliance to wear. If the soreness does not go away after a few days, try swishing warm salt water around your mouth to ease discomfort and rid the area of lingering bacteria. 

Pointy Wire

 There is always a chance that a wire may wiggle itself loose and irritate your gums and cheeks. This can happen after eating something especially chewy or simply due to normal wear and time. Luckily, you can temporarily fix this at home by placing a small piece of orthodontic wax on the end of the wire so it stays flush against your teeth. Orthodontic wax is digestible, so don’t worry if it falls off your bracket without noticing! Then, call our office so that we can determine if an office visit is necessary.

Loose or Broken Bracket

Should a bracket become loose from its position, your first step is to stay calm. This is a fixable emergency, and we recommend you notify our office as soon as possible so we can help you determine the best next steps. Our team will help in setting up an emergency appointment. In the meantime, your best temporary solution is to rotate the bracket back into place and place orthodontic wax to avoid irritation or injury inside your mouth.

Properly Maintain Your Oral Hygiene

One of the cornerstones to keeping your teeth in perfect condition is maintaining exceptional oral hygiene by routinely brushing and flossing! 

Dillehay Orthodontics suggests you brush your teeth in the morning before you go to sleep and after each meal. This ensures no small food particles linger and build up bacteria. We will demonstrate exactly how to properly brush your teeth with braces after you get them placed.

Flossing also remains crucial to keep your oral health in check. Any appliance with wires, like braces, makes it a slightly more involved task, but we will provide you with special flossing threaders you can use to clean everything thoroughly. 

Great Time To Establish Routines

The earlier you can establish good routines, the easier it will be to keep your appliance and teeth healthy throughout treatment. There are extra steps that require you to set aside more time to practice your oral hygiene, but the better care you take now, the better shape your teeth will be in later in life.  Setting reminders on your phone or asking another member of your household to remind you of the above tips will help you develop a simple routine you follow instinctively.

Guide To Your First Week in Braces

Your Braces Journey Starts Here!

Dillehay Orthodontics is here to support your braces journey from the first step into our office to after you complete treatment with us! Please let us know what we can do to make your experience as comfortable and stress-free as possible. We have offices in East and West Wichita as well as Derby. Give us a call to schedule your free consultation so you can begin treatment and straighten your smile today!