Orthodontic FAQs: Answering Common Questions about Treatment
So you're considering getting braces to straighten your smile and fix your bite. You probably have a lot of questions about what to expect during treatment, and as your trusted orthodontic practice in Winnipeg, we’ve heard most (if not all!) of the questions - and we have the answers.
Do Braces Hurt?
In brief, braces can initially lead to mild discomfort lasting for a few days as your teeth and gums adapt. However, this discomfort is typically quite manageable.
Upon the initial placement of braces, your teeth and gums will often require an adjustment period. It's common to experience tooth soreness and gum irritation for a span of 3 to 5 days.
Using wax and gentle brushing/flossing around the braces, you can relieve discomfort during this initial adjustment period.
As your treatment progresses and your teeth start to shift, you may experience some pressure, tension, or minor pain for a couple of days after each adjustment appointment. Again, this is normal and temporary, responding well to the usual remedies.
What Can I Eat With Braces?
With braces on, some foods can be tricky to eat, but you can try the following:
1. Soft foods:
Yogurt, pudding, Jell-O, applesauce, mashed potatoes, pasta, soups, smoothies, milkshakes
2. Cut-up foods:
Bananas, cantaloupe, watermelon, pancakes, waffles, sandwiches, pizza
3. Avoid anything too hard, sticky, or chewy:
Gum, taffy, caramels, nuts, popcorn, pretzels, and chips.
What Foods Should I Avoid With Braces?
Avoid any hard, sticky, or crunchy foods that could damage your braces.
1. Hard candies, popcorn, and nuts: These can break wires or bands and loosen brackets.
2. Sticky foods like caramels, gummies, and taffy: These get stuck in your braces and are hard to remove.
3. Crunchy foods such as chips, pretzels, carrots, celery, and apples: These can break braces or worsen their condition.
4. Sugary foods and drinks: Limit intake as much as possible. Sugar feeds the bacteria in your mouth that cause cavities and tooth decay.
5. Gum: Chewing gum can loosen bands and brackets. Avoid it altogether.
How Long Will I Need to Wear Braces?
The length of time you'll need to wear braces can vary from patient to patient and depends on several factors, including:
- The severity of your alignment issues. Minor spacing problems typically require less treatment time than more complex misalignments.
- Your age. Orthodontic treatment usually takes longer for adults compared to teens, whose teeth and jaws are still developing.
- Your compliance with treatment. Following your orthodontist's instructions for wearing your braces and attending appointments as scheduled will keep your treatment moving efficiently. Missing adjustments or not wearing rubber bands as directed can prolong your treatment.
- Extractions. If your orthodontist needs to remove teeth to create room for your remaining teeth to be moved into proper alignment, that will add additional time to your treatment.
- Jaw problems. Correcting an overbite, underbite, or crossbite requires more intensive orthodontic work.
How Much Do Braces Cost?
Braces can vary significantly in cost, depending on several factors. Typically, traditional metal braces range from $3,000 to $7,000 for the entire course of treatment. Ceramic braces, which blend in better with your teeth, tend to cost $4000 to $8500 more. Lingual braces attached to the back of your teeth cost around $8,000-$13,000. All of these numbers are just estimates, so it’s important to speak with your orthodontist about specific pricing.
How Often Will I Need to See the Orthodontist During Treatment?
The visit frequency depends on your specific needs and treatment plan. Typically, expect to see your orthodontist every 4 to 8 weeks for adjustments and progress checks.
So there you have it, the top questions about braces treatment answered. We hope this helps put your mind at ease about what to expect during your orthodontic treatment, and while braces may not be the most stylish accessory, wearing them will give you a smile you'll love for life.
If you're ready to take the next step towards achieving that beautiful smile, don't hesitate to contact Rykiss Orthodontics. Our team of experienced professionals is here to guide you through the journey to a straighter and more confident smile.