Orthodontia can make your teeth look beautiful, but braces can be quite painful. This is most often the case immediately following appointments to have the braces tightened. Tightening typically occurs every three months or so, and the pressure can be intense for the first few days. While the results are worth every ounce of pain, you may be looking for ways to ease the ache. These tips will help you find a way to reduce that pressure.
1. Sip On Something Cold
What do you do when you have an injury? You probably apply an ice pack. You can do the same with your mouth, or you can drink something cold enough to numb the pain. Water does the trick, but you can also drink juice (with no added sugar) or a slushie. Stay away from soda and other sugary drinks. You can also suck on ice or popsicles. Just don't chew them!
2. Munch On Something Soft
Soft foods, especially cold ones, can ease the pain. This is especially the case because you need to maintain a healthy diet while you are wearing braces, but you must avoid chewy and hard foods. Baby food is hardly appetizing, but it can help if the pain is too intense. Otherwise, yogurt, jell-o, rice, soft fruits and vegetables can do the trick.
3. Take Something for the Pain
Painkillers, like Tylenol, can be helpful. Take one or two pills, according to the instructions, before the appointment. Take another dose several hours after the appointment. This dulls the pain for several hours at a time. Just make sure not to overdose or rely on pills. This is a technique best used in conjunction with other methods.
Numbing gels can also work wonders for your mouth. Orajel and Anbesol are both helpful, applied with a cotton swab or finger, to ease pain for up to an hour. These gels are available over the counter.
4. Brush with Something Soft
A soft toothbrush is your best bet when you are brushing with braces. In fact, a soft toothbrush is more than a good pain reliever. It also prevents gum recession caused by harsh brushing. Brushing effectively does not mean that you have to brush hard or inflict pain on yourself.
5. Do Something with Dental Wax
Most orthodontists will provide patients with some dental wax that can be used to prevent metal from poking the gums, lips or inside of the cheek. Make sure to replace wax each day to prevent bacteria and other dental issues from developing.
Braces are no walk in the park. Just remember that each tightening means you are one step closer to a fantastic smile! If the pain feels as if it is too much to bear, make sure to speak with your orthodontist about your options for pain relief. For more information, visit http://www.cresthillfamilydental.com.