But Dr. Crist, I Thought You Told Me…
We want to make sure that you have the correct information so please read the following notes
How Long Will My Teeth Be Sore?
Expect the teeth to be somewhat tender the first few days after your braces are adjusted. Take Ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, Aleve) to alleviate the discomfort. The teeth will not bother you unless you try to eat with them. The sooner you start chewing the faster you will adjust. Try not to baby the teeth.
What Floss, I Never Saw One In My Bag.
In your bag you will find a sample of Super Floss. The teeth should be flossed daily to remove food trapped between the teeth and under the wire, where your toothbrush cannot reach. It is very important to floss daily or the gum tissue will become irritated and swollen.
Will The Inside of My Lips Be Sore Forever?
Expect from time to time, that your cheeks and lips may become irritated. You will eventually build-up a callous. If an ulcer forms, use the wax that we gave you and place it over the braces that seem to be causing the problem. The wax will stay in place even while eating if you make sure that the area is dry before putting the wax in place. Pull off a small piece, roll it up in a little ball and stick it over the braces.
Do I Still Have To See My Dentist For Cleanings and Check-Ups?
YES, YES, YES!!! Please continue to see your dentist for regularly scheduled cleanings.
Why Did I Get This Space Between My Teeth?
Sometimes things look worse before they will look better. The teeth will move in different directions as the teeth are straightening out. You may see a space between your teeth that was never there before or teeth that seemed perfectly straight before the braces were placed may not seem as straight. Please be patient and things will start to improve. That space will close and those teeth will line up, I promise. In order to straighten the worst of the teeth, the straighter teeth may be pulled out of alignment but eventually they all work together to give you that great smile we are all working towards.
I Was Only Eating Mashed Potatoes When the Brace Broke
Sometimes braces do not break off immediately after they are loosened. Sometimes that hard candy, gum, bagel, or pizza crust weakens the glue but not enough for it to come off. The next thing you know the bracket pops off while you are sitting in class or eating a banana. The important thing is that you call us ASAP to let us know. The brace does not necessarily have to be replaced right away, but we want to know about it. If you wait until the day of your appointment to tell us you have a brace off, we may not be able to fix it. If we know ahead of time we can make arrangements. Patients with more than five (5) broken braces may be charged for repair.
My Teeth Are Loose, Is This Okay, Are They Going To Fall Out?
Yes, this is all right so do not worry about them falling out, unless it is a baby tooth of course. We want them to get loose so that we can move them around. If they get too loose we will let you know but this is rare.
How Much Longer Will The Braces Be On?
Remember, the time we told you is a rough estimate. It could take a little longer or it may not take as long. A lot of what happens depends on you. If you do not wear the elastics, plan on adding time. If you go away for the summer, plan on adding time. If you continuously break braces, plan on adding time. Missed some appointments, plan on adding time. Even if all goes smoothly, it could take awhile longer. No two people have teeth that move the same way and we do not want to rush the final result. Asking at each visit, “How Much Longer” will not help you get your braces off any earlier. But, no one can blame you for trying! The Downside to asking at every visit… your orthodontist could lose his mind…which could add time (just kidding… or am I?) Good Luck!
Michael A. Crist, D.D.S.
Braces & Children's Dentistry
13303 Champion Forest Dr, #10
Houston, TX 77069
Monday-Thursday 9:00am to 5:00pm
Closed for Lunch 12:45 pm to 2:00pm
Saturdays: 9:00am to 3:00pm