You got braces! Congrats! You may be nervous, but read these five ways to embrace your new life with braces.
- Smile. You might be embarrassed about smiling with b races, but you shouldn’t! Rock your braces with confidence. Also, it can be a great conversation starter. Many people have braces today, and it’s not something to be ashamed of.
- For the first few days (and after you get your braces tightened), eat soft foods. Try foods like pasta, rice, oatmeal, and smoothies. You also want to cut your food into small pieces so they’re easier to chew and don’t damage your braces.
- You will likely feel some pain and discomfort the first week, but you can take action to find relief. A warm washcloth or a heating pad may reduce the soreness in your jaws. You can also take non-aspirin pain relievers. You may also want to put wax on the braces to lessen the discomfort, especially the first one to two weeks. Another thing you can do is to gargle with saline. To do this, take a glass of lukewarm water and add a teaspoon of salt. Swish and gargle with this solution for a few minutes to get rid of the pain. Then, spit out the salt water.
- Avoid certain foods. Common sense will direct you in deciding what you foods you shouldn’t eat. You don’t want pieces of food getting stuck to your braces, so you should avoid hard foods, sticky foods, and foods high in sugar. Sugary foods can cause decay and other oral problems. You should have the following beverages no more than once per day: soda, sweetened tea, Gatorade, Kool-Aid, and any other drinks with sugar. You also want to avoid foods you have to bite into, such as apples, corn on the cob, and chicken wings.