In the initial phase of wearing braces, you will notice some mild discomfort. This is normal. Your mouth, jaws, teeth, gums and tongue have to get used to wearing braces.
Orthodontic pain relief can be achieved in a variety of ways. From over-the-counter pain medication to eating soft foods.
When does the orthodontic discomfort start and what can you do about it?
The initial period after having braces fitted is often the most challenging for some patients as there is a lot to get used to.
Both your mouth and tongue are not used to having braces on your teeth and you may find that some pain relief is in order.
Sticky and hard foods may cause your braces to come off your teeth and you may take longer to clean your teeth. All these things contribute to the challenge of getting used to your new braces.
The good news is this will soon pass!
Here are some ways you can relieve the discomfort.
6 easy ways of relieving orthodontic discomfort
1. Soft foods for the first few days
Eat softer foods that do not require much forceful chewing until you are more accustomed to eating with braces. Some of these foods include mashed potatoes and soups.
We have a range of braces-friendly recipes in the Knowledge section of our website that might help!
2. Cold foods
The cold from the ice cream/icy pole/ice cube helps to numb your teeth a little which can provide some relief. However, exercise some care if you find that your teeth are sensitive to cold to begin with.
Doing something completely different can take your mind off the discomfort. It’s a great time to try out that new gym around the corner you’ve been thinking about joining or get outdoors.
4. pain relief
This may help to take the edge off the discomfort while you carry on with your daily activities.
Alternating paracetamol and ibuprofen according to the manufacturer’s recommendations can be useful. But be sure to only take pain relievers when necessary, as it’s more helpful in the long run if you don’t rely on pain medication.
5. Rinse your mouth with warm salt water
Rinsing your mouth with warm salt water provides a soothing effect and can treat any sores that may develop on the inside of your lips or cheeks due to the rubbing of the braces.
6. Chilled drinks
Just like cold foods, chilled drinks such as icy cold water, juice, smoothies and slushies are a good way to ease the pain.
However, beware the hidden sugars in drinks! Try to rinse your mouth out with water after you finish any sugary drink too.
When will my teeth and gums get used to the braces?
The fact is, the introduction of braces to the usually smooth face of a tooth is a huge shock to the tongue and the buccal mucosa of your mouth.
What was once smooth is now relatively rough and it takes a while for the tongue and buccal mucosa to get used to the non-smooth surface it now interacts with.
Sore spots are a rite of passage in orthodontic treatment and the good news is that it will not persist to the same degree as treatment progresses because your tongue, cheek and gums will get used to the braces and wire.
However, every time your tooth moves, the brace and wire may interact with your buccal mucosa and tongue in a slightly different angle and may cause a sore spot to develop.
Relieving braces pain
It’s important to remember this pain and discomfort is only temporary. And with these 6 easy ways to relieve orthodontic discomfort, you shouldn’t have such a bad time of that initial teething period.
If you would like more information, or to request an appointment, please contact us today.