If you or a loved one recently began orthodontic treatment, you might be discovering that braces can lead to some level of discomfort. Some patients experience soreness of the cheeks, lips and tongue, while others have an overall ache in the teeth and jaw. Some patients develop moderate to severe headaches after braces application and/or after each adjustment.
If you are experiencing these headaches, you can take steps to get some relief.
- Over-the-counter medications that relieve pain and also reduce swelling are excellent choices to treat braces-related headaches. Ibuprofen is an excellent choice, as is naproxen sodium.
- Applying a cool cloth, ice pack, or bag of frozen vegetables (such as corn or peas) to your head, face and neck can relieve a headache.
- Drink something cool, like a milk shake, frozen yogurt or iced drink, slowly, so as not to get a “brain freeze.” Sometimes a beverage with a little caffeine can help alleviate a headache.
- Use your hands to massage your temples, neck and head. If you’re able, ask a friend or spouse to massage it for you. If possible, regular visits to a massage therapist can help reduce the severity of a headache.
- Avoid crunchy or chewy foods while your teeth ache. This can make your headache worse.
- Seek out pressure points, like those in the webbing between your thumb and forefinger, and apply pressure to help a headache go away.
- Spend time in a darkened, quiet room. Avoid bright lights and loud noises while your headache is present.
If your headaches persist, talk to your orthodontist for other tips to manage them. Your orthodontist should know what to do to help you deal with your orthodontia-related headaches.
Sherman Oaks Orthodontist