Braces Tips

braces tips - Lyons Orthodontics

braces tipsThe end results of wearing braces are well worth the wait and minor discomfort! Most patients say they experience some minor discomfort after they’ve had their braces adjusted or new Invisalign aligners put in. Braces also require a few lifestyle adjustments in order to ensure that you not only get the best results but that you don’t risk damage to them or to the soft parts of your mouth.

Our Lyons Orthodontics team has gathered some handy tips for those who are undergoing their Just Smile orthodontic treatment. We truly care about making your smile transformation the best it can possibly be. Keep in mind that if something happens, including injury to your mouth or damage to the braces, it’s important that you call our orthodontics office for professional help.

Keep a Braces-care Kit on You

You’ll find it beneficial to keep a care kit on hand. This kit should contain everything you will need to keep your teeth and braces clean when you’re on the go. Students can carry their kit with them at school, and adults will find it useful to have on hand in the office. A small container or zippered pouch should be sufficient to hold your toothbrush, toothpaste, and orthodontic wax.

The Importance of Orthodontic Wax

Orthodontic wax can prove to be very beneficial for more than just protecting the insides of your mouth from the metal of the braces. Whether you have braces on top teeth or on both bottom and top teeth, you may have a wire, band or bracket that comes loose. This can cause irritation or pain. If this is the case, cover the irritating part with the orthodontic wax and make a call to be seen by your local orthodontist.

Rinsing with Salt Water, When Feeling Discomfort

It’s not unusual to feel discomfort when you have braces, particularly after first getting them placed and after adjustments. A rinse with warm salt water can help ease your mouth discomfort. Your orthodontist may also recommend using over-the-counter pain relievers to ease some of the discomfort you may be feeling.

Wearing Your Aligners as Instructed

If you have Invisalign El Dorado Hills patients will need to follow the instructions given when it comes to wearing the aligner trays. Each of the Invisalign aligner trays are designed to be worn almost continually for two weeks at a time. They can be removed for eating, drinking and cleaning your teeth, but you will need to ensure they are worn as instructed if you are to get the best in results from the treatment.

Keep Up with Your Orthodontic Appointments

When it comes to seeing your El Dorado Hills orthodontist, patients shouldn’t skip appointments. Whether it’s an appointment for adjusting your traditional braces, or an appointment to check on your progress, it’s important that you stick to the schedule.

Keep in mind that your appointments are also an opportunity for your orthodontist to identify any minor issues that you may need to resolve during the course of treatment. 

Are you interested in transforming your smile? Do you need to schedule a follow-up appointment with Dr. Lyons? When in need of an orthodontist El Dorado Hills patients know that they can rely on Lyons Orthodontics to help them get the beautiful and confident smile they’ve always wanted. 

Chewing Gum with Braces

chewing gums with braces - Lyons Orthodontics

chewing gum with bracesOnce you start your orthodontic treatment, your orthodontist will usually tell you to avoid certain foods until the treatment is completed. If you have traditional braces, you’ll have to avoid foods like popcorn, caramels, toffees, and whole apples. Traditionally, orthodontists have said that patients should stay away from chewing gum when they have braces. However, there are some that say that chewing gum with braces is okay. So, who is right? Is it possible to enjoy gum when you have braces?

 

Why You Should Not Chew Gum with Braces

Gum is sticky, that’s about the gist of it. It’s this same stickiness that can see it being stuck to the wires and the brackets of your traditional braces. Gum stuck to your brackets can prove to be difficult to remove and may require an unplanned visit to your orthodontist in El Dorado Hills. Beyond the sticky factor, the gum could result in the bending of the wires. Even the smallest bends in the wires can result in your teeth moving the wrong way. Our Lyons Orthodontics team wants you to have the best orthodontic experience possible, so our professionals highly recommend avoiding gum if you have traditional braces. Otherwise, it can potentially add weeks to the duration of your treatment if your teeth move further from alignment.

Why Do Some Believe it’s Okay to Chew Gum with Braces?

We’ve all heard it, from friends or family members or from something posted on social media. “I’ve chewed gum with my braces and I was just fine.” Typically, they will be referring to having sugar-free gum. Sugar-free chewing gum is quite often free from the stickiness seen with the sugary varieties. This can help avoid bending of the wires and keep it from getting stuck in the brackets

There are also some benefits of sugar-free gum, including its ability to help you avoid cavities. This is because artificial sweeteners help reduce the bacteria that lead to cavities. In addition, the chewing of gum can help remove small food particles that are between your teeth if you’re not able to brush or floss after enjoying a meal.

Some also believe that chewing sugar-free gum after getting your braces placed or after adjustments can help to ease some of the discomforts you’re feeling. This can be particularly true when it comes to braces for teens who may feel a fair amount of discomfort after getting their braces.

So, What’s the Verdict About Gum and Braces?

Like we’ve stated above, gum and traditional braces just don’t mix! If you have additional questions about what you can or cannot have with braces, contact Lyons Orthodontics in El Dorado Hills! Once or twice won’t necessarily interfere with your treatment, but there is always the risk of damage to your braces. Dr. Kacos, one of the best dentists in Shreveport, LA, adds that braces are one of the most popular cosmetic dentistry options today, but they’re not for everyone. Invisalign is another great cosmetic dentistry option. Invisalign El Dorado Hills orthodontic patients will learn is a bit different. These aligner trays are removable, so you can enjoy a piece of gum once in a while. As it’s recommended that you keep the aligner trays in place as much as possible, you shouldn’t remove them too often to enjoy gum.

 

Alternatives to Chewing Gum with Braces

There are a number of other options that will give you the same benefits seen with chewing sugar-free gum. If you’ve been told that gum can help relieve discomfort, opt for over-the-counter pain relievers. They will help relieve both inflammation and discomfort. An ice pack can further help reduce any inflammation. 

Staying hydrated will also help reduce the signs of inflammation and will also help wash away the bacteria that may otherwise result in cavities. Avoid chewing on ice, as this can damage both your teeth and your braces.

If you’ve been relying on gum to help keep your breath fresh, there are a number of alternatives. Coldwater with lemon or orange can help keep you hydrated while also freshening your breath. Sugar-free mints that don’t need to be chewed or are not overly sticky.

If you do wind up with gum stuck on your braces, don’t panic. Simply call up Lyons Orthodontics and we will schedule you in for an appointment. In the meantime, use your toothbrush to clean off as much of the gum as is possible. Use dental floss to loosen and remove any gum that might be stuck between your teeth.

Protecting your braces from the potential damage that gum and other sticky foods can do will help ensure you get the best results from your treatment. If you have any questions about your braces and what needs to be avoided, be sure to call the office to speak to an orthodontic professional.

How to Eat With Braces

eating with braces - lyons orthodontics

eating with braces - lyons orthodonticsFor most people, adjusting to eating with braces is the biggest challenge they have yet to face! If you are one of those people, this brief guide compiled by the dental care experts at Lyons Orthodontics in El Dorado Hills is perfect for you! 

How to Eat With Braces

  • Opt for soft foods.
  • Avoid sticky or crunchy foods that could damage the brackets of your braces.
  • Cut your food into smaller pieces.
  • Take smaller bites of food.
  • Eat slowly and chew your food carefully.
  • Avoid biting into corn on the cob, apples burritos, and other similar foods.
  • Use your back teeth to chew.
  • If sensitivity develops while you eat, ask Dr. Tim Lyons for pain relievers.

You may notice that your teeth no longer fit together like they used to before you got the braces. Lyons Orthodontics experts explain that this feeling is due to the changing position of your teeth, and it can make the act of eating feel awkward. Eating slowly is the best solution to still enjoy your meal without putting your oral health and the orthodontic devices at risk.

What Are the Recommended Foods For When You First Get Braces?

If you just got new braces, or your current set has just been tightened, you are better off eating liquid or soft foods, like mashed potatoes, yogurt, meal replacement shakes and soup.

Dr. Tim Lyons, a Folsom orthodontist, recommends that you eat cold foods, like ice cream, to ease any discomfort or pain you may be experiencing. Make sure that those cold foods don’t have anything crunchy in them and avoid biting hard into them while you eat.

As you get more used to having braces, you can gradually shift back to your normal favorite foods. Talk to your Fair Oaks orthodontist for advice about when and how to make this transition.

As you decide what food to eat, remember that sections of your braces, such as the ligatures, may be stained by pigmented foods (beetroot, curry sauce and blackcurrants, for example). Try your best to avoid these foods as much as possible.

What Snacks Are Okay for People With Braces?

The professionals at Lyons Orthodontics in El Dorado Hills advise patients to refrain from eating snacks like crunchy chips and popcorn when they start wearing braces. 

Softer snacks, such as applesauce, soft cheeses, soft cookies, and muffins are safe to eat if you wear braces. Although, don’t overdo the sugary snacks as a way to compensate for missing out on the crunchy snacks. Excess sugar isn’t good for your teeth and overall health, and getting braces can be a good time to adjust your sugar intake accordingly!

To make it easier to avoid overconsumption of sugary snacks, stock up on healthy snacks, like bananas, blueberries, and yogurt. 

Recommended Eating Habits for People With Braces

Our busy lives have forced us into the habit of taking big bites of food eating in a hurry. However, if you wear braces, this style of eating will not only cause you pain, but it will also endanger the different components of the braces, like the brackets.

Dr. Tim Lyons recommends that you make a deliberate effort to bite small pieces of food and then chew them slowly so that you don’t put your braces at risk. Eating slowly can help you enjoy your food more and digestion! 

Sterling Heights dentist, Dr. Farhart, suggests that another helpful eating habit is consuming plenty of water with your food. This habit is good for two main reasons. The first reason is it will help you swallow the small bites of food if you are finding it difficult to chew the food thoroughly. The second reason is the water you drink will rinse the mouth so that any food particles stuck on your braces are washed away. This makes maintaining oral hygiene even easier!

You must check your braces each day to see if anything is out of sync. If you see anything abnormal, contact us at Lyons Orthodontics immediately regardless of having a scheduled visit planned within the coming days. Prompt attention to any defect will prevent any injuries by damaged braces and allows your orthodontic treatment to stay on course!