For many children and teens, going to the orthodontist and getting braces put on is a necessity. Braces do more than just give you a straight smile. They can also correct any jaw alignment issues that lead to headaches, jaw tension, and TMJ disorder. Although braces are the most common form of orthodontic treatment, many wonder what it’s like to get braces put on. Here’s a look at the process.
The Braces Consultation
The process will begin with a consultation with the orthodontist. During this appointment the orthodontist will look at your mouth, including your teeth and jaw alignment, to determine the best course of action with your braces. In some cases, you may need to have teeth removed before getting braces, or you may need to wait for certain teeth to erupt.
The Process of Getting Braces Put On
When the day comes to get your braces put on, you may feel nervous or scared. Rest assured that this is a common and straightforward procedure. You won’t have to do anything more than lie back and watch TV while the orthodontist puts the braces on. The process begins with applying special glue to your teeth to attach the brackets. Then, archwires are placed between the brackets and are connected to metal bands around your molars. Finally, elastic bands are twisted around the brackets to hold the archwires in place. These elastic bands are often the most fun part of your appointments, since you can choose what color you want these to be, and you can change them out at each follow up appointment.
Does Getting Braces Hurt?
Getting the braces put on does not hurt at all. You may find that you dislike the taste of the glue used to attach the brackets, but a quick swish of water at the end of your appointment will get rid of this. Several hours or even the day after your appointment, you may feel some soreness in your teeth and jaw. This is to be expected. You can take over-the-counter pain medication such as ibuprofen to help alleviate any soreness you may feel. In most cases, children should refrain from taking aspirin unless advised by a pediatrician. Generally, the pain goes away within one or two days of your appointment.
In some cases, the metal brackets may scratch the inside of your lips or cheeks. This is fairly common and your orthodontist will give you special dental wax to cover any protruding wires to prevent them from causing further scratching. You may also want to try applying a bit of Orajel or a similar product to any painful areas.
Follow Up Braces Appointments
Depending on your orthodontic treatment plan, the orthodontist will request that you come for follow up appointments every few weeks for adjustments. During these appointments you will get to choose new colored elastic bands, and the orthodontist will tighten your archwires and clip off any excess at your molars.
Walton Center for Family Dentistry will soon be offering orthodontic treatment to our patients in the Loganville area. If you would like more information about getting braces for you or your child, please contact us online, or call 770-450-2030. We look forward to discussing your dental health and providing you with a healthy, beautiful smile for life.