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9 Ways to Deal With Teen Braces

Sep 15 / 2017

Getting braces in the middle of your teenage years isn’t an easy pill to swallow.

We know you may not be exactly looking forward to the treatment, but what we can tell you is that they’re important if you want a healthy, beautiful smile into adulthood.

While braces may seem like the end of the world, here 9 tips on how to cope with the treatment.

If you follow these tips and begin to understand that the benefits outweigh the cons, you’ll be on the way to your perfect smile.

Tip 1: Choose the right treatment

When you think of teen braces, you may think of the traditional braces in old movies that included headgear and big, thick metal brackets on the teeth.

Thankfully, we can promise you that braces have come a long way since then. There are several different types of options for braces.

The traditional metal braces are the most common, but there are also clear metal braces that are less noticeable or Invisalign, which can be taken out for up to 4 hours a day.

Download our exclusive comparison guide of what treatments are offered at Align. We break down the options, pros and cons of each and provide specific information from Align Ortho’s Dr. Scramstad himself.

This comparison guide is a good resource to show your family members when discussing your best option. But, don’t forget, your Orthodontic provider will tell you what they recommend during your consultation.

Tip 2: Keep meals braces-friendly

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Nothing is worse than coming down from your room to find that your parents have cooked something like corn on the cob, which you can't eat because of your braces.  

Ask your family to make all meals braces-friendly inside the home. This way you’ll be able to eat what everyone else is eating and won’t feel left out. If a family member prepares your school lunches, be sure to ask them to keep the foods soft and chewable (but not chewy).

Another thing you can do is have one night of the week where you cook your family dinner. This will show them the different options for braces-friendly food and gets you helping in the kitchen.

Tip 3: Make sure your voice is heard

While you’re going through your treatment, you’re going to want to have your voice heard by your family and Orthodontic provider.

If you’re going through a tough time at school because of your braces, don’t think that you’re alone. Thousands of teenagers go through the exact same thing you’re going through, which means you’re not alone.

If you’re feeling bullied or feeling alone, let your family members know. Together you can come up with a way to deal with your school experience. And, if you have any friends going through treatment, ask them how they got through school and their teenage years with braces.

Tip 4: Speak up if they hurt

Braces shouldn’t hurt all the time. It’s common for metal braces to hurt when they’re first put on and then for short periods of time after a tightening. The same goes for Invisalign. When you put in a new tray, you might feel a slight hurt for the next few days.

If the pain doesn’t stop, tell your Orthodontic provider and a family member.

On top of those common pain points, if you’re being scratched or poked by the brackets or wire, that is something your Orthodontic provider needs to know. If you don’t speak up, it won’t get fixed and no one wants a constant pain in their mouths.

Tip 5: Follow instructions given by Align Ortho

When Dr. Scramstad and the Align Team asks you to do something, it’s important that you follow their instructions. While you may not think it’s necessary or you just don’t want to do it, you need to.

If you don’t follow what they tell you, you’re simply prolonging the treatment period and lengthening the time you have to wear braces for.

So, if your Orthodontic provider tells you to clean your teeth a certain way, make sure you are doing it. When your provider tells you to avoid certain foods like gum, listen to them or you could damage your braces. If you’re told to wear rubber bands, wear them!

Tip 6: Brush your teeth every day

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Don’t miss a day of brushing your teeth. If you’re worried about forgetting, set an alarm and try to brush them at the same time every day. We suggest brushing your teeth after every meal if possible.

When you’re going through Orthodontic treatment, brushing your teeth simply won’t be enough. Make sure you use a baby brush to brush around your braces before using the bristle to get under the wire. On top of thoroughly cleaning your teeth, don’t forget about your tongue.

Finish with a floss and a swig of good mouthwash. Follow the instructions that Align Ortho gives you.

Tip 7: Carry disposable picks

Trust us… you’re going to get things stuck in your braces and having disposable picks at the ready will be a lifesaver.

Carry them in your backpack, purse or even your pocket. While we do say to brush your teeth after every meal, we know it’s not always possible. Having these picks available will stop you from picking at your teeth and having the odd green bit of food stuck in your braces.

Tip 8: Toast your bread

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You may be chuckling now thinking about this being a tip, but think about it. When you last bit into a piece of bread, a wrap or a burger, did the soft bread become a mushy ball attached to your teeth?

Yeah, you’re not alone, that happens to us too. That’s why we suggest whenever you’re planning to eat bread to toast it. The toasted bread will be less likely to get stuck in your braces and you won’t be there trying to pick out pieces of bread using your tongue, finger or even a pick.

Tip 9: Drink lots of water

There are two main reasons why you should drink a lot of water when you have braces. The first reason is that it helps eliminate anything that’s stuck between your teeth. Swish some water around your mouth to loosen up some of the food stuck in your braces.

You can swish and spit the water out, or if you’re trying to be more discreet, swish the water around your mouth once and then swallow it. While there is no guarantee swishing water will get all the food out, it will most likely help.

The second reason has to do with health. Soda and juice can be very corrosive to your teeth and that can cause cavities. So, if you’re only drinking water, you will cut the risk of forming cavities.

Soon treatment will be over

Treatment doesn’t last forever. You’ll have your braces off before you know it and will be thankful that you went through with it.

We hope these 9 tips are helpful and if you have any more questions regarding braces, Orthodontic options, or to book a consultation, call Align Ortho today.  


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