What are braces?
Braces are dental fixtures that orthodontists use on patients who have problems with teeth alignment. Braces are common in children. However, adults have them too. Braces align teeth and improve the way the arrangement of teeth in a person’s mouth. The Associated Dentists of Northwest Indiana and Merrillville dentist, Andy Koultourides, have been providing braces to locals in need for years.
How long do patients have to stay with braces?
Braces are not permanent fixtures. At some point they have to be removed. The duration they stay in the mouth is dependent on the distance the patient’s teeth have to be moved. The type of brace also determines the length the brace stays in the mouth. Fixed braces are supposed to be removed after 18 to 24 months. However, they stay longer than this duration if the patient’s condition was extreme. Removable braces take a shorter period. Patients who
have been treated with fixed braces at times have to use removable braces after the fixed braces have been removed.
Normally there are certain directions that an orthodontist will give after fixing the braces. Following these directions is very crucial. If the directions are not followed, the duration the braces stay in a patient’s mouth could be prolonged.
Visits to the dentist when wearing braces
Some patients feel that there is no need to see a dentist when they are wearing braces. The fact is that it is that it is very important to see a dentist regularly when you are wearing braces. In fact the orthodontist will schedule follow up clinics for you after fixing the braces. The follow up clinics are very important. The dentist checks if the brace is still in the right position and if it is serving its purpose. Plaque builds up around the braces. It can be hard to clean. The dentist needs to clean the braces for you, especially if you have the fixed braces.
Do braces cause soreness?
Generally, the body is sensitive to change. The mouth will take some days to adapt to the change caused by the braces. A brace exerts pressure on the teeth. This may make a patient feel so uncomfortable during the first few days. A patient is often advised by the orthodontist to use painkillers to ease the pain caused by the braces during the first few days.
These effects are supposed to go away within a few days. The brace also causes discomfort on parts of the mouth such
as the tongue and gums. This often results in sore spots. This soreness can be treated using wax or other ointment that the dentist will give you. The soreness is not a permanent symptom. Therefore one should go back to the dentist if the soreness persists.
Braces do not bar you from sports
A brace should not be a reason for you not to participate in sports. There are several things that you can do to make sure that a brace will not be a problem when participating in sports. For people with removable braces it is advisable to remove the brace before indulging in any sporting activity. Once you remove the brace do not just place it anywhere. A removable brace should always be stored in a brace case to prevent contamination. It is also important to use a mouth guard once you remove the braces. The braces should be put back as soon as the sporting activity ends. It is not a good idea to swim while wearing braces. For the case of fixed braces, they cannot be removed. They do not cause any discomfort when participating in any sporting activity since the mouth is used to them. A mouth guard should be used when participating in any contact sport such as rugby, hockey and boxing.
Eating with braces in the mouth
Eating is inevitable. People with braces have to be cautious with the types of food they eat. During the first few days after the braces have been put in the mouth, avoid hard foods. They can break and damage the brace. People with braces have to avoid sticky and sugary foods. Sticky foods, such as chewing gum, should be avoided. This is because they stick on the braces. This can cause plaque to build up around the brace. Sugary drinks and cold drinks are to be avoided at all costs. Milk and water are the safest drinks when wearing braces, especially the fixed braces.
Do not neglect your mouth when wearing braces
Braces are not a solution to oral hygiene. Actually they do need extra attention as far as cleaning is concerned. It is important that you observe good oral hygiene. The braces should be cleaned regularly either at home or by the dentist. Cleaning the braces as well as the teeth ensures that the mouth stays healthy.