What to expect when you get braces

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How long does the process take?

For most patients, it takes about 1 hour to put your braces on.

What will the orthodontist and his assistant do?

First, the orthodontic assistant will thoroughly clean and dry your teeth. Next, she will apply the bonding glue to your teeth and the orthodontist (Dr. Glauser or Dr. Williams) will correctly position the brackets on your teeth, your braces will be dried on with a blue light. Finally, the orthodontic assistant will place the archwire in the brackets and secure them with elastic bands.

Does it hurt? For how long?

Getting braces on doesn't hurt, but your teeth and mouth will be sore afterwards. Expect your teeth and mouth to be sore for about a week.

Tips for dealing with the pain

Stick to soft foods for the first day or two - soup, mashed potatoes, yogurt, milkshakes, applesauce, scrambled eggs, mac and cheese, etc.

If necessary, use over-the-counter pain relievers like acetaminophen or ibuprofen.

Use orthodontic wax to avoid mouth sores in the first few weeks of your treatment. Use as much wax as you need to feel comfortable. To apply, just squash the wax between your fingers and press it on the brackets that are bothering you (try to make your teeth as dry as possible before applying wax).

How long will it take to get used to my braces?

Most patients are completely used to their braces after about a month. After six months, or even sooner, they don't even notice they're there. However, it's not unusual for teeth to occasionally start hurting for no apparent reason - this is normal, and should go away fairly quickly. If necessary, treat with over-the-counter painkillers.

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