Frequently asked questions about life with braces….
How long will I be wearing my brace? Probably not the answer you were hoping for but – it really does depend! Firstly, one main factor is whether you’re wearing fixed braces or removable braces.
- Fixed – The average time period for these is between 12-24 months though if the problem is severe, it could take longer.
- Removable – These are designed to take less time than fixed braces. In some cases, people wear a removable brace before and after their treatment.
The length of treatment also depends on how well you adhere to your orthodontist’s guidance and instruction. Those who neglect their treatment or cut corners will be wearing their braces for longer than those who don’t!
How often should I visit my orthodontist?
You should be looking to visit your orthodontist every 6-8 weeks in order to track your progress and make sure things are on track.
Are there things to avoid?
If you’ve got a removable brace, be sure to remove it before eating or drinking things that might get caught in the brace. If you’re a chronic nail biter or pencil nibbler, this has to stop, otherwise you may damage your brace!
Can I play musical instruments?
If you’re wearing a removable brace, don’t delay in putting it back in once you’ve finished playing – there may be some circumstances where you are not allowed to remove the brace to do this so it’s best to check with your orthodontist. It’s possible that you may produce a different sound to normal whilst playing and wearing your brace.
Are there products I can use for brace maintenance?
Products such as fluoride and tartar control agents help to keep you brace clean and bacteria-free.
Why should I look after my mouth if I’ve got a brace?
It is important not to abandon your oral health when you’ve got a brace (and indeed in any instance!) Failing to look after your mouth and teeth whilst wearing braces exposes you a greater chance of tooth decay and tooth decalcification (losing the calcium from the surface of your teeth), which can leave white spots on your teeth.
How do I clean a removable brace?
Use a separate toothbrush to clean your brace. It’s a good idea to clean it above something clean, so that if you drop it it doesn’t gather germs or dirt. You can ask your orthodontist for special techniques to help you clean you brace. Use toothpaste to do this.