Life With Braces

Brushing and Flossing

Now that you have braces, it is more important than ever to brush and floss regularly, so the teeth and gums remain healthy during treatment. Adults who have a history of gum disease should also see a periodontist during orthodontic treatment.

Eating with Braces

What can you eat? Let’s talk about what you should not eat! For the first day or so, stick to soft cool foods as much as possible, and avoid tough meats, hard breads, raw vegetables and any type of chewy or crunchy foods. You will need to protect your orthodontic appliances when you eat for as long as you’re wearing braces.

Foods to Avoid

  • Chewy foods: bagels, hard rolls, licorice
  • Crunchy foods: popcorn, ice
  • Sticky foods: caramels, gum
  • Hard foods: nuts, candy
  • Foods you have to bite into: corn on the cob, apples, carrots

Chewing on hard things (for example, pens, pencils or fingernails) can damage the braces. Damaged braces will cause treatment to take longer.

General Soreness

When you get your braces on, you may feel general soreness in your mouth and your teeth may be tender to pressure for about 3 – 5 days. You might experience some discomfort after an adjustment for a few days. Over-the-counter medication such as Tylenol is sufficient for relief.  The lips, cheeks and tongue may also become irritated for one to two weeks as they become accustomed to your braces or Invisalign. We will supply wax to put on the braces in irritated areas to lessen discomfort. If you run out of wax, just call us or stop by the office.

Tooth Mobility

Some degree of tooth mobility is to be expected throughout treatment. This is a normal part of the process of moving teeth. The teeth will stabilize in their corrected positions once treatment is completed.

Loose Wire or Band

Occasionally, a wire or band can come loose, so don’t be alarmed if this happens. Call our office as soon as possible for an appointment to repair the problem. If irritation to the lips or mouth occurs, place wax on the wire to reduce any discomfort.

Rubber Band Wear

To successfully complete orthodontic treatment, it is necessary that the patient works together with the orthodontist. The teeth and jaws can only move toward their corrected positions if the patient consistently wears the rubber bands or other appliances as prescribed. Remember, lack of cooperation and damage to the appliances will lengthen your treatment time, so please, help us help you by following your specific instructions.


If you play sports, it is important that you let us know. If you are in braces, Shock Doctor makes a mouth guard specifically to go over your brackets. You can find this mouth guard at any sporting goods store.