Today, wearing braces is more comfortable than ever before. However, you may still experience some slight discomfort following braces adjustments at the orthodontist’s office, which is typically caused by changes in the pressure on your teeth and the blood flow in your gums. Alternatively, some braces pain is related to irritation of the cheeks, gums, or tongue by the braces themselves. If you are suffering from braces-related pain, there are several solutions you can try to improve your comfort levels until any pain passes naturally.
Pain Relief Medication
For pain following an orthodontic adjustment, over-the-counter pain relievers are often a good solution. You can continue to take pain relievers as necessary in the days following your adjustments. Additionally, topical pain relief medication can be effective in treating more localized pain, either following an adjustment or due to irritation from your braces.
Sensitive Tooth Solutions
Tooth sensitivity is a common complaint among braces-wearers. Using a toothpaste designed to minimize sensitivity can help you find relief from braces-related discomfort caused by gum irritation or recession, which leaves the unprotected roots of your teeth exposed. You should also make sure you are brushing with a soft-bristled toothbrush and take care to brush lightly, rather than scrubbing harshly at your teeth.
If you exercise or play sports regularly, protecting your braces will also protect your teeth. Braces damage, such as dislocated brackets or wires, is a common source of pain and irritation. Wearing a mouthguard to prevent damage to your braces will reduce the risk of pain; if your braces are damaged, schedule an orthodontic visit to repair your braces promptly.
Hard or chewy foods can sometimes cause discomfort during treatment with braces. Changing your diet to include soft, easy-to-eat foods such as Jell-O, milkshakes, cooked meat and vegetables, and mashed potatoes can help you get the nutrition you need without causing unnecessary discomfort. Many braces wearers opt for a soft food-only diet in the days following an adjustment to relieve or prevent pain.