Congratulations! Your braces are about to come off. After months – or years – of wearing your braces, your teeth are ready and your orthodontist is going to take off your braces. Your orthodontist will schedule your final appointment to remove your braces. This appointment usually takes about an hour.
Removing the braces is a fairly simple procedure. During your appointment, your orthodontist will use pliers to clip off the brackets of the braces, removing them from your teeth. This is not a painful process, but you will feel some pressure and hear a popping sound as the bracket comes off of the tooth. Because the brackets were adhered to your teeth with a cement-like adhesive, some of this will remain on your teeth. Your orthodontist will remove this, either scraping it off by hand or by using a polishing device.
Once your braces have been removed, you are likely to be fitted for a retainer. A mold will be taken of your mouth and your orthodontist will create a custom retainer for you. The retainer will prevent your teeth from shifting back to their original positions. It’s important to wear your retainer exactly as your orthodontist recommends. If you don’t, your teeth could shift back into their old positions, and your time in braces would be wasted. Be sure to keep your retainer in its case when it’s not in your mouth. Never wrap the retainer in a napkin or paper towel, as this is a sure way to accidentally throw it in the trash.
After you have left the orthodontist’s office, schedule a regular dental cleaning and check-up with your dentist. Wait a minimum of one month before undergoing any kind of whitening treatment, as the newly exposed enamel from under the brace brackets will be sensitive at first. Be gentle with your teeth and gums for several days, as they are likely to feel a bit sensitive.
It’s important to take care of your new smile. Be sure to maintain good oral hygiene habits and brush, floss, and see your dentist regularly. This way you’ll enjoy your new smile for years to come.