We live in a post-braces world – a world that no longer stigmatizes those who wear braces. Quite the contrary, with recent advancements in orthodontic medicine, braces can be as much a fashion statement as a medical treatment. Of course, as much as the medical community continues to make progress in the orthodontic field, there’s no doubt that adjusting to wearing braces takes more than a little time, and more than a little patience.
Life without Certain Foods…
Or: The only time when you can categorize chewing gum and corn together! The first thing orthodontists tell their patients, after how to properly care for their newly braced teeth, is that certain foods can no longer be a part of a patient’s menu:
- Corn-on-the-cob is no longer permitted.
- Apples need to be sliced.
- Popcorn should be consumed slowly and carefully.
- Chewing gum is right out.
Every orthodontist wishes the best for their patients, but every doctor knows that patients don’t always follow procedure down to the letter. In the case of foods like corn, that can easily get stuck in-between braces, it’s important to brush and floss immediately after consumption, to avoid harming teeth. Crunchier foods, like apples, should be eaten in smaller sizes – like slices – to avoid potentially damaging one’s braces. Gum is still generally best avoided.
Playing Sports with Braces
Even though all orthodontists take great care to make sure that brackets and wires stay firmly in place, wearing braces places the onus of safety on the patient. Braces are meant to make a patient’s mouth, smile, and life better; this means that braces should never take away from one’s experiences. However, this also means that patients will have to adjust to wearing braces in more ways than one. For example, certain activities, like contact sports, will require the addition of a mouth-guard (though most contact sports require a mouth-guard anyway).
Worrying about Appearances
Every patient worries about how they look with braces. Today’s braces are far less intrusive and noticeable than models from even 15 or 20 years ago. At clinics like Abougoush Family Dental Care, orthodontists make an active effort to get to know their patients on a personal level, to better understand their day-to-day experiences.
Basic Braces Maintenance
Of course, when patients first get braces, the presence of something foreign in the mouth requires acclimatization. Many first-time patients assume that wearing braces is a constantly painful experience. While this might be true for the first few days when the mouth is getting used to the wires adjusting the teeth, braces are an often painless experience.
Stay in touch with your orthodontist if:
- Pain persists.
- There’s a poking sensation.
- Something feels wrong.