Questions & answers

My brace feels loose:

Your brace may be loose because some of the clips require adjustment or because part of the brace has been broken. Please contact our reception desk during opening hours for further advice. It is best to try to keep wearing the appliance if at all possible.

My teeth feel sore or my brace hurts:

If a brace is newly fitted or has been recently adjusted, the teeth can feel rather tender - especially when you try to bite or chew. This is quite normal for about five days after fitting or adjusting and if needs be, the same sort of pain relief medication can be taken as used for headaches. Pain which is more severe than this or more persistent is not usual and you should contact us if this is the case. We will arrange to see you as soon as possible and you should continue with pain killers but always observe the instructions on the packet.

Something on my brace is rubbing inside my mouth:

When a brace is fitted or adjusted, it can take some days for the skin of the mouth or gums to get used to the new surfaces of the appliance. If anything feels sharp or is rubbing, we advise using some of the protective wax which you can purchase in our oral hygiene/appliance care packs. Simply dry the area of the brace which feels sharp or prominent and apply a pea-sized piece of wax to cover it. The wax is entirely harmless if swallowed. Just re-apply as required and let us know if problems persist.

Can I eat sweets and hard foods?

The simple answer is "NO". Sadly, some foods or materials which we eat are very harmful to your brace and are bound to cause breakages. Toffees, boiled sweets, mints, hard crusty foodstuffs etc. will prise off parts of the brace attached to the teeth or damage and distort wires. They will also stick around the brace and teeth and cause decay leaving permanent marks or cavities. The foods referred to are only some examples of the sorts of foods to avoid and the list is certainly not comprehensive. Common sense is the best guide - if you have to bite hard on it, then it's best avoided.

Hard fruits or vegetables such as apples and raw carrots can be eaten and are very healthy snacks - cut them into bite sized pieces first.

When should I clean my teeth and brace?

It is really important to keep your brace and teeth free of food matter and plaque. If you don't, you can get gum swelling and bleeding, tooth decay with permanent marks and smelly breath. Not nice! Always brush your teeth and brace after eating and before bedtime. Try to confine eating to mealtimes and if you plan to eat anything sweet or sugary - do so with or immediately after your meal and then clean your teeth and brace thoroughly. Daily use of a mouthwash with added fluoride is recommended as this helps to keep the enamel surfaces of your teeth around the brace strong and healthy.

What about contact sports?

Lots of orthodontic patients play contact sports such as rugby or hockey, to name but a few. It is very important to protect the teeth from impact and injury with a mouthguard or gum shield. Speak to our staff in reception for further advice; there are special mouthguards which can be worn along with braces and which can be purchased in our reception area.

I think my brace is broken:

If you think that your brace is broken, you should contact us so that we can advise you as to what to do. If it is a fixed brace and the broken part is rubbing or uncomfortable - try using some orthodontic wax to cover the component in question. A persistently offending sharp piece of wire may need to be cut or bent out of the way. If you have a removable brace - try to continue to wear it as much as you can as long as it not at risk of being dislodged.

Advice Sheets

Please click on the documents below for more information:

Fixed Brace Guide

Functional Brace Guide

Removable Brace Guide

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