New Braces Tips

Now that you have started orthodontic treatment, here are a few hints to help get you through the first several days with minimal discomfort.

General Soreness

You may experience a feeling of general soreness in the mouth. This can be relieved by rinsing with a warm salt water solution.  Dissolve one teaspoon of salt in 8 ounces of warm water, and rinse vigorously.  If the tenderness is severe,  acetaminophen or ibuprofen, as you would take for a headache, may give some relief. Soreness should not last longer than 3 to 4 days.


Be careful to protect the orthodontic appliances when you eat. Faithfully follow our instructions on foods to avoid. For the first day or so, soft foods will be more appropriate. Avoid tough foods, hard breads, and raw vegetables, plus any other specific foods we discussed which can cause problems.  Remember, you must avoid all sticky, chewy foods while in braces.


If you take part in athletics, it is important that you consult us for special precautions. In the case of any accident involving the face, check your mouth and the appliances immediately. If the teeth are loosened or the appliances damaged, phone us at once for an appointment. In the meantime, treat your discomfort as you would any general soreness. 

Loose Wire, Band or Bracket

If a wire, band or bracket comes loose, don’t be alarmed. This happens occasionally. If a wire protrudes and is irritating you may use a blunt instrument (a pencil eraser or the back of a spoon) to adjust it. Carefully push the irritating wire under the arch wire to get some relief. If irritation to lips or mouth continues, orthodontic wax or wet cotton can placed on the wire to reduce discomfort. Call our office as soon as possible for an appointment to check and repair the appliances. If any orthodontic piece comes off, please save it and bring it with you to the office.