All About Braces

Brushing and Flossing

It’s important to brush and floss regularly when you have braces so the teeth and gums are healthy during orthodontic treatment. Patients may require more frequent visits to the dentist for a professional cleaning. Adults with a history of gum disease should also see a periodontist during orthodontic treatment. Please watch the two videos below on the proper care of braces during orthodontic treatment.

Eating with Braces

For the first day or two soft foods are best. Avoid tough meats, hard breads, and raw vegetables. Remember that you’ll 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, pizza crust
  • 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 makes treatment take longer to complete.

General Soreness

When you get your braces on, you may feel general soreness in your mouth and teeth may be tender to biting pressures for a few days. Take whatever pain reliever you normally take for headache or discomfort (no aspirin for kids!). The lips, cheeks and tongue may also become irritated while you become accustomed to the braces. We’ll supply wax to put on the braces in irritated areas to lessen discomfort.

Loosening of Teeth

This is to be expected throughout treatment. Don’t worry! It’s normal. Teeth must loosen so they can move. The teeth will tighten up after treatment is completed.

Loose Wire or Band

Don’t be alarmed if a wire or band comes loose. If a tie-in wire sticks out and is irritating, use a blunt instrument (eraser end of a pencil) and gently push it back in place. Simply get it out of the way. If irritation to the lips or mouth continues, place wax or wet cotton on the wire to reduce the annoyance. Call our office as soon as possible for an appointment to check and repair the problem.

Rubber Band Wear

To successfully complete orthodontic treatment, the patient must work together with the orthodontist. The teeth and jaws can only move toward their corrected positions if the patient consistently wears the rubber bands as prescribed. Lack of cooperation and damaged appliances lengthen the treatment time… so please … follow instructions.


Please let us know if you play sports. We’ll give you a protective mouthguard for playing contact sports.