Whether you are a teen or an adult, if Dr. Song recently started you on the path to a beautiful new smile with braces, you want to be sure you know everything you can do to help that process reach this goal.
These are her top recommendations:
Food and Snacks
Be sure you understand the foods and snacks that are safe for your particular type of braces. Modern ones are stronger and restrictions are fewer, but regardless, it is important to avoid hard or sticky foods that can damage them. These include ice, nuts, cum, taffy, and hard candy. But many foods can be eaten if you adapt them: cut vegetables into bite-sized pieces or cook them, cut up breads into pieces that are easier to chew, and cut meat off the bone. And you can indulge in lots of delicious foods that are healthy, such as cooked grains, beans, pasta, avocados, bananas, oranges, soups, dairy products, eggs, and soft meats (such as chicken, turkey, and seafood). For more examples: https://www.isongorthodontics.com/care-instructions/
Brushing and Cleaning Habits
Be clear on how to brush and clean your teeth, since there are more crevices for food particles to get trapped and cause plaque to build up. If you need the techniques shown in person, ask for this at your next appointment. Water flossers, floss threaders, and an orthodontic-grade mouthwash will help stop periodontal (gum) disease from developing.
Make sure all aspects of the braces are comfortable between appointments. If in the process of wearing them, eating, brushing, and flossing, any wire starts to poke your tongue, lips, or cheeks, call for an appointment to have this fixed. Meantime, you can use a small roll of orthodontic wax to put on the injured area, taking it out before eating and replacing it afterwards. You can also use a pencil with a clean eraser to push the wire in a new position. If an archwire has slipped out of its bracket, you can use tweezers to place it back on. If you feel any pain, you can use ibuprofen or acetominophen, as well as swish around your mouth for 30 seconds a half teaspoon of salt in water for 30 seconds as often as you need.
Be sure you keep your appointments with Dr. Song because braces require adjustments as the teeth move in response to the pressure and it is important to have her decide whether changes should be made (including the application of technology that could speed up the process). If you have questions about your experience or need to change your appointment, call us today.