(Last Updated On: February 16, 2021)
At-Home Remedies to Alleviate Discomfort from Braces
The look of your smile can be impacted by orthodontic treatment. Braces do not just correct a plethora of malocclusion and oral concerns but also enhance self-confidence. With all the benefits of braces comes discomfort sometimes.
Occasionally, the most pain from braces is felt when it is initially installed, and every time they are tightened. While some patients can cope with the discomfort and have no need for pain relief, others find succor in home remedies to lower pain so that the treatment goes on smoothly.
Getting to know about the available pain relief options for braces discomfort can be a beginner’s guide to a life of braces.
Here are some things you can do to have a pain-free orthodontic treatment.
These medications, popularly known as topical anesthetics, are made with an ingredient called benzocaine. On any part of the body, benzocaine is applied, it causes numbness and can help relieve pain that comes with orthodontic work. Certain products are even produced with menthol or clove oil to increase their pain-fighting ability.
Kindly adhere to the instructions provided in the leaflet accompanying your topical anesthetic for proper usage. You can either use your finger (ensure it’s clean) or a cotton swab. Direct application of most products on the affected area is usually required, and it should be repeatedly applied every few hours.
When you get braces, the soft tissue in your mouth gets irritated. This is where orthodontic wax comes in – it safeguards these soft tissues that are being scraped. Where metal wires are sticking out and are irritating some parts of the mouth, you need to apply orthodontic wax. This is particularly done in situations where the brackets are rubbing on the lips or inner cheeks.
Orthodontic wax can be divided into small pieces and rubbed on any mouth area. You can get this product at any dental store and in many drugstores. How safe is this for use? Oral application is not dangerous. For metal brackets or wires that are very sharp and you need to apply orthodontic wax, an appointment with your provider will be just fine.
Cold foods and ice packs
The swelling and inflammation that comes with the use of braces can be relieved with ice packs. This can be done by directly placing an ice pack (made at home) on your cheek and letting it spread into the area where you have the braces.
Some persons may think that chewing or sucking on the ice will provide a more soothing effect. This is not true. Doing so will only damage or break your braces which will require an urgent orthodontic appointment.
Foods like smoothies and ice cream that are cold can alleviate pain caused by braces on the affected areas. Bear in mind that when using an ice pack, cover it up with a washcloth to reduce the coldness on your cheek.
Store-bought pain medication
This is yet another remedy for braces pain. Typical over-the-counter pain medications used for cases like this are ibuprofen (Advil) and acetaminophen (Tylenol). Advil specifically provides an efficient relief for patients experiencing mild to moderate inflammation after braces have been installed or tightened. Before taking any medication, do well to read the instructions on the label. Should you be pregnant, have heart disease, or be on blood thinners, you should not take NSAIDs.
Warm rinses of saltwater
A wide range of oral problems can be treated using warm salt water rinses. For instance, mouth abscess, infections, and issues with affected wisdom teeth, and discomfort can be fixed with this simple home-made solution. Should you be experiencing pain with braces, warm salt water rinses can get you relief and lower inflammation and swelling.
How do you prepare this solution? Get a cup of warm water and add a half teaspoon of table salt to it. Stir the mixture thoroughly and use it the same way you would use a mouthwash. As required, you can prepare a saltwater rinse – it is a safe and effective solution for people receiving orthodontic treatment.
Eat soft foods
You can get a lot of comfort by eating very soft food with your braces. Foods that are hard such as candies, pretzels, nuts, veggies, and fruits can bring about discomfort. That’s not all. The brackets can come off, or wires may break when you eat chewy and hard foods. This is what makes taking care of braces a challenge. Changing your diet to include soft foods will not only lower swelling, pain, and tenderness but also keep your braces intact.
Here are some recommended foods braces patients can eat:
- Mashed potatoes
- Ice cream
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After receiving your braces and having them tightened, maintain a diet of soft foods; it is very important. Also, for the entire duration of your orthodontic treatment, keeping up with non-hard and non-sticky foods will bring about a pain-free experience and discourage any urgent visit to the dentist.
What is the best help for you?
It is not uncommon to experience pain when you start using braces. This differs from person to person, so some patients do not go through any discomfort, while others have certain pains after braces have been fixed and tightened. Some at-home remedies have been listed, but the basic plan is to find which solution is more effective for you. Soft foods may work best for some patients; others may find topical anesthetic or ice pack very soothing. You could also get more relief by using more than one home-made solution – it is not cast in stone.
Bear in mind that dental and orthodontic emergencies tend to occur and usually occur. Should you be going through a lot of pain or applying orthodontic wax to an area of wire that comes loose, or unstrapped. A very fast solution can be offered to orthodontic emergencies. It gives more than just a remedy for everyday tenderness and swelling – it provides a deep soothing relief.
The more you use braces, the less you may require pain relief or none till you finish the treatment and have the braces taken out. There are useful tips on how to maintain a safe smile and not fall into dental emergencies.