girl with braces smiling

Braces and Orthodontics: How to Deal with the Pain

Crooked or crowded teeth can negatively affect not just your smile, but also your self-esteem and oral health. It can make you self-conscious about your teeth and try to hide or cover your mouth when you smile, laugh, or talk. They also make you prone to dental issues like cavities, gum disease, and bad breath. Improperly aligned teeth can be harder to clean than straight teeth.

Unfortunately, many of those who need orthodontic treatment put off wearing braces because of many reasons, one of them being the pain of the process.

Do braces hurt?

Wearing braces can cause discomfort and pain. The process of having them on could hurt, and you are likely to feel some pain and pressure. Both your teeth and gums might also feel a little sore afterward, but this is normal and part of the treatment. Many dentists who focus on orthodontia in West Jordan and other places explain that there are many things you can do to ease the pain, but your teeth will soon adjust, and the pain will lessen. Here are some things you can do to ease the pain.

Use Over-the-Counter Medication

If you feel pain after your orthodontic treatment, ask your dentist or doctor if they could prescribe any pain medication that you could take before and after treatment.

Use an Icepack

You could also use an icepack to lessen the inflammation and pain. An icepack applied to that part of your mouth that feels painful can lessen it. If you don’t have an icepack, you could also use cold water or ice. A cold glass of water sipped slowly can reduce the pain significantly.

Use a Warm Rinse

If you don’t like cold water, you could also use a warm water rinse mixed with salt as a gargle. Using this mix as a rinse can help heal cuts and sores from the braces.

Use Oral Anesthetics

Woman with braces and apple

You could also ask your dentist to recommend an oral anesthetic for the pain. You can apply this gel or cream directly using a swab or a finger. The anesthetic can desensitize teeth and gums.

Avoid Hard and Crispy Food

You should eat soft and mushy food when you have orthodontic appliances. Crispy food can make the pain feel intense. It would be best to avoid eating crispy and hard foods. Soups, mashed potatoes and cereal are all acceptable dishes you can eat when you just adjusted your orthodontic appliances.

Use Orthodontic Wax

If your gums and lips feel sore after you’ve adjusted your braces and brackets, you could ask your dentist for a tooth wax that will protect your lips and gum from the braces. The wax can prevent the sharp ends from irritating the gums.

Feeling pain while wearing braces means that your teeth are adjusting and reacting to the dental appliance. But you will soon be accustomed to wearing them within a month. After six months, you might not even notice that you have them on your teeth.

Pain can also be evident when you have your braces adjusted or tightened. This, however, is not as intense when you first had your braces. The pain is mainly due to the increased pressure on your teeth to push them to align and adjust.

What should you know?

Metal braces are the most common type of braces, but there are also other discreet options like clear braces and Invisalign. You can consult your dentist about them to find out if they are right for you.

It is understandable that you (just like most patients) will want the less conspicuous option when straightening your teeth. There is no problem with doing so, but you also have to take note that they are not right for every situation. You have to listen to your orthodontist for an effective treatment.

Braces can cause some discomfort, but this temporary pain shouldn’t scare you away. The best thing you should do is to focus on the result, which is a straighter smile that can improve your self-esteem and quality of life.

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