Orthodontics Blog - Dr. Albert Fontaine

Braces Hurting? Tips on How to Relieve Pain from Braces

DUNEDIN AND SPRING HILL, FLORIDA-Whether you recently got braces or you’ve had them for a year or more, you’re probably well aware that they can be uncomfortable and sometimes result in pain.

It’ll all be worth it once you see that beautiful smile you’ve worked so hard to achieve.

“I’ve been an orthodontist for many years and I know braces can hurt,” says SPRING HILL DENTAL BRACES provider Dr. Albert Fontaine. “At our offices, we try and give patients pointers and resources to help alleviate the pain.”

Dr. Fontaine, a PALM HARBOR CHILDREN ORTHODONTIST, offers common tips that he gives his patients for relieving the pain that braces can sometimes induce.

For Pesky Wires
In many cases after first getting braces or having them adjusted, one of the wires may stick out into your cheek. If this happens at a time when the orthodontist’s office is closed, here are a few tricks you can use to either fix the problem or at least hold you over until you can schedule an appointment with the orthodontist:

Bend or push the wire back with the eraser end of a pencil.
Use toenail clippers to clip the excess wire, as they are stronger than regular nail clippers.
Apply soft dental wax over the end of the wire.
For an Aching Mouth or Teeth
For the first few weeks of having braces or after an adjustment, you may experience soreness.

According to Crestprohealth.com, “Some research has shown that braces pain may be caused by changes in blood flow that occur when the braces apply pressure to the teeth.” External pain can be attributed to the “physical rubbing of the brackets and wires, which can cause pain in the soft tissue inside the mouth. This type of braces pain usually lessens with time, as the tissues become tougher.”

Fortunately, there are several home remedies you can use to relieve the discomfort that comes with braces.

“One of our favorite sayings in the office is that you get a doctor’s prescription for ice cream,” says Dr. Fontaine, a CLEAR BRACES and INVISALIGN TEEN provider.

Dr. Fontaine recommends eating cold foods as one way of reducing pain. The cooling food can be refreshing to the mouth. Also, soft foods such as spaghetti or mac & cheese are good to eat when you’re experiencing pain from braces.

If the diet change isn’t doing the trick, maybe consider taking an over-the-counter pain reliever such as ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin, Nuprin) or acetaminophen (Tylenol). The medicine should only be used around once every 6 hours until the pain subsides and never more than a week. Also, it is extremely dangerous to have any alcohol with Tylenol. Do not overdose; it could cause serious stomach lining issues. If you’re experiencing serious pain, call your orthodontist. A severe pain will probably be due to something other than braces so we need to check it out.

There are also topical gels that can be applied directly to the mouth to help relieve pain. The SPRING HILL METAL BRACES guide suggests, “Topical anesthetics such as Orabase and Orajel can be effective for temporary pain relief. These gels are placed directly on the tissue and can numb the pain for a few hours. Some people have allergies to these medications, so follow the product label instructions, and the advice of the orthodontist/physician before using.”

For Sores On The Lips and Gums
Sores sometimes develop on the lips and gums because they have not become accustomed to the roughness of braces. If you have sores, the best solution is to rinse the mouth with warm saltwater to reduce inflammation and irritation several times a day. We suggest using wax in the beginning but it is best to reduce the wax usage to allow the tissue to toughen up.

Sometimes a great smile comes with a price. Hopefully, Dr. Fontaine’s tips help ease your journey to the path for a perfect smile. Braces can be uncomfortable at times, but with these ideas, you can manage the pain and be on your way to getting straighter teeth in no time.

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