If you or your child have a new set of braces, you will want to make sure to take proper care of your new orthodontia to ensure the treatment phase is efficient and successful.
Initially, you will want to choose a soft food diet for a few days to allow time for the sensitivity to subside. Once your mouth has adjusted to your new hardware, there are some simple guidelines you can follow to make sure your braces do their job effectively:
- Avoid chewing hard or sticky foods such as ice, some candies, gum, hard chips, and popcorn kernels that can damage your braces.
- Cut chewy meats off the bone, cut hard fruits and vegetables into small bites, and tear or cut chewy or hard bread into bite-size pieces.
- Refrain from chewing on fingernails, pens, pencils or other hard objects to avoid damaging your orthodontia.
- Wear a protective mouth guard when participating in contact sports and alert your orthodontist immediately if your braces are damaged in any way while playing.
- Brush and floss regularly to maintain healthy teeth and gums while undergoing orthodontic treatment.
- To maintain your gum health during and after having braces, floss using either a floss designed for braces or regular floss used with a floss threader.
- Always wear rubber bands, retainers, or any other appliances as recommended by your orthodontist to ensure your teeth and jaw move into the correct position.
Taking care of your braces takes very little work, but offers many rewards. Maintaining the functionality of your braces will result in faster treatment time and a lifetime of straight, beautiful smiles.
Sherman Oaks Orthodontist
Once you’ve completed your treatment with braces, your orthodontist will fit you for a retainer. A retainer is designed to prevent your teeth from shifting back into their former spaces, and promotes them to stay even and aligned. For the first year or so, you will have to wear your retainer most of the day, and later, you’ll only sleep in it. One thing’s for certain, you won’t want to lose it.
Because you will take out your retainer from time to time, the possibility exists that you’ll misplace it.
Here is some important advice from your orthodontist about protecting your retainer:
- Never, ever wrap up your retainer in a paper towel or a napkin. This makes it look like a piece of trash that needs to be thrown away. Even if you put it safely into your lunchbox in the napkin, it’s too easy to grab it up and throw it away later without thinking.
- When your retainer isn’t in your mouth, it should be in its case. Choosing a brightly colored case means that it will be unlikely to be overlooked. A bright red or neon green case might seem garish and conspicuous, but that same case isn’t going to be forgotten when you get up from the table, and if it happens to make it to the trashcan, you’re going to find it a lot faster if it’s bright and easy-to-see.
- Wear your retainer as recommended by your orthodontist. If you are wearing it in your mouth, you know exactly where it is. It will never be lost or damaged if you have it on.
- Once you’re able to wear your retainer only at night, leave it in its case in one single place each day. This spot could be your purse, your backpack, your sink, your nightstand or your locker. Developing a habit regarding your retainer can be essential in keeping track of it.
Following these important tips from your orthodontist can help you keep track of your retainer.
Sherman Oaks Orthodontist