• What to Do When Your Braces Hurt

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    A lot of new patients to orthodontia are nervous. What exactly should you expect? There’s a wide range of orthodontic options, and each patient calls for slightly different treatment. Sometimes your individual treatment may cause you discomfort, but we’re here to help! Here’s a breakdown of why your braces might be hurting you and what you can do to relieve the pain.

    Why Do My Braces Hurt?

    The reason your braces hurt when you first get them is the fact that the metal wire is moving teeth that don’t want to be moved. This is also why you may experience some discomfort throughout the course of your treatment. Your teeth are strongly rooted in your mouth and are accustomed to resisting moving under pressure from things as simple as chewing or as intense as a blow to the jaw during an accident. The pain you are experiencing may be from your teeth resisting the constant pressure braces are putting on them to move over a period of time. Naturally, the majority of us don’t have perfectly straight teeth. Depending on how far your teeth deviate from perfection, there will be a varying amount of pain as your orthodontist guides your teeth into the correct position using braces.

    How Can I Reduce the Pain of Braces?

    There are a number of steps you can take to help reduce pain associated with your teeth being adjusted. Here are a few options:

    • Oral Anesthetic: This is easy and only costs a few dollars, but it can have real and decently long lasting results. There are a number of products intended to treat toothaches, and pretty much any sort of oral anesthetic will make a difference when it comes to pain from your braces.
    • Over the counter pain medication: Pills like aspirin, acetaminophen, or ibuprofen can help alleviate pain receptors in the body. Taking the recommended dose of over the counter medicine can do a lot to relieve the pain in your mouth. Be sure not to exceed the recommended dosage or make the recommended dose a daily occurrence unless advised to do so by a doctor.
    • Cold water: Ice cold water will serve to numb your mouth, and may reduce the pain associated with your braces. This tip is only really advisable for people without sensitive teeth, as those that are sensitive to hot or cold might get more pain out of this method than they will pain relief.
    • Patience: Adjusting your teeth to make a great smile is a process that can take some time. Getting used to a little bit of pain now and then during the beginning will help desensitize you to pain later on in the process.

    Having braces shouldn’t be an excruciating process. If you use some of the tips we’ve listed above, the process should be more uncomfortable than painful. Please call us at {{tel}} if you can’t handle the pain. Our dental team with make time to get in you to adjust your braces. But hang in there, and you’ll have a straight smile a lot sooner than you’d think!