Home Care

Braces Diagram Pic

Please refer to the diagram and make yourself familiar with the orthodontic terms. This will help us communicate with you when discussing your treatment and will help you be able to more clearly describe and explain any questions or concerns you may have during the course of treatment.

Brushing

It is very difficult keeping your teeth clean when you are wearing braces. This is because food particles are stuck between the teeth and inside the brackets, and can only be cleaned out with flossing and brushing. Cultivate the daily habit of brushing your teeth after meals because the formation of plaque on the teeth often leaves an indelible white mark on the teeth surface. Invest in a good soft toothbrush. Apply a firm and steady pressure when brushing and make sure to brush at an angle of 45 degrees to the tooth. Circle the brush below and above the brackets. Do not be surprised if your toothbrush wears down faster than usual. This will be because of the increased friction with the braces. Simply replace it as soon as the bristles start falling apart.

There are several choices to choose from the market. Interplak toothbrushes are awesome. Waterpik is okay, just that it is not capable of brushing away gummy plaque that sticks to the teeth. You should also make daily use of dental floss. Floss threads can be reused.

Eating Habits

Absolutely No

Sticky Foods:
Caramels
Sugar Daddies
Starbursts
Caramel Apples
Sugar Babies
Licorice
Toffee
Tootsie Rolls
Now & Laters

Hard Foods:
Nuts
Popcorn
Bagels
Apples
Corn on the Cob
Pizza Crusts
Carrots (uncooked)
Doritos
Pretzels

You must select the type of foods you eat when you are undergoing orthodontic treatment with braces. Hard foods such as nuts, crisps, popcorn, hard bread rolls etc. should be left out of your diet plan. These foods are hard enough to break your brackets and wires. You can have whole carrots and apples only if you cut them into bite-size pieces. If you must eat corn, make sure you remove it from the cob before eating.

Also, totally stay away from all sticky and gummy foods such as bubble gum, sticky candy, caramels etc. If you have the habit of chewing or biting your nails, pencil or pen, this is the time to drop it.

After drinking or eating anything, make sure you rinse your mouth thoroughly with plain water. Also, brush your gums after brushing your teeth.

RINSE WITH WATER AFTER EATING OR DRINKING ANYTHING!
BRUSH YOUR GUMS AFTER BRUSHING YOUR TEETH!

Braces

Always devote a specific period once a week to examine your braces for any bent or loose components. If you notice you have a broken wire, band or bracket, urgently contact our office so that we can schedule a repair appointment for you. Be very specific and detailed while describing the problem to the receptionist. If however you lost your rubber bands, we would be happy to send some over to you through mail or you can simply walk into our office and collect some.

Sore Teeth

You will experience some soreness of the teeth for 2 or 3 days after putting on the braces. Advil, Tylenol, sugarless chewing gum are enough to ease you from this discomfort. You may also feel slight irritation of the tongue and cheeks - this is normal and you shouldn't be worried. However, if you have sores, or feel anything sharp, cover the brace with wax and contact Dr. Waters.

Elastics

Elastics attached to braces are responsible for creating the pressure needed for teeth mobility. You must endeavor to wear your elastics always, and change them every day if you want this pressure to be steady. Failure to wear your elastics constantly will result in a longer treatment period.

Find below your duties concerning the use of elastics:

  • You are responsible for placing the elastics on your braces between appointments. Make sure to wear them as instructed. Remove them only when brushing your teeth, gums, and braces after meals. Then put them back on immediately.
  • Always carry a few elastics with you, so if one breaks you can replace it right away. If your supply is low, call the office and we will mail you an additional supply of elastics.
  • If you forget to insert your elastics one day, don't double up the next day — just follow your regular instructions.
  • Elastics become worn out. When they lose their elasticity, they don't provide the proper pressure on your teeth and jaws. It is very important to change them as directed, even when they are not broken.
  • If your elastics are rubbing your cheeks, try twisting the elastic prior to attaching it to one of the terminal hooks.
  • If your elastics break frequently, a wire or band loosens, or a hook breaks off — call our office immediately. Don't wait until your next appointment. These problems need to be corrected as soon as possible!

Removable Appliances

These devices have been meticulously designed to hold or move the teeth. Make sure you wear them according to the instructions and have them with you at each of your visits. Find below how to use and care for your removable appliances:

  • It is recommended that you wear your appliance always, even when sleeping. You may only take them off while swimming, eating, or during strenuous sporting activities. With practice and patience, you will regain your normal speech pattern after 2 to 3 days of wearing them.
  • Resist the urge of turning the appliance around in your mouth with your tongue. This act can lead to teeth and appliance damage.
  • It is normal to have sore teeth for 1 or 2 days after you start wearing braces. However, if the sore is on your gums, quickly contact our office for immediate adjustment of the appliance.
  • Do not use any type of toothpaste in cleaning your appliance, as this will encourage a buildup of plaque. Clean the appliance daily, using only a toothbrush with soap and warm water. For a more detailed cleaning, you can make use of denture cleaner. Floss daily, and if you are putting on a bonded wire retainer at the back of your teeth, ensure to be very careful when cleaning the wire and surrounding area.
  • Do not use tissue or paper napkin to wrap your appliance and keep where people can easily pick it up and throw away. Do not also place it in your pocket as it may break there or get lost. Anytime you are not wearing your appliance, make sure it is in its plastic container.
  • Do not let your pets near your appliance to prevent them from chewing the appliance.
  • Keep the appliance away from any heat source. Do not sterilize your appliance by boiling it. If there is any need for sterilization, bring it to us and we will happily and professionally do it for you.
  • For constant breakage of appliances, you may be charged and extra fee for repairs. Lost appliances attract a replacement fee.

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