Getting braces is a big step for many individuals seeking a healthier smile. Not only do braces help straighten crooked teeth, but they also fix other health issues such as over/underbites, overcrowding and even headaches attributed to tooth pain.
While getting braces is a fairly common procedure, many people are still uneasy about the process. If you’re curious about how long it will take to get braces, and whether or not getting braces will hurt, read on to learn more and put your mind at ease.
How long does it take to get braces?
About one to two hours on average.
Your dentist or orthodontist will begin by cleaning and drying your teeth. Then, he or she will apply glue to your teeth to attach the brackets. Finally, your doctor will place a wire in your mouth to connect the brackets. He or she also may add elastic bands to secure your braces.
Are braces painful?
The process of getting braces is not painful. However, it’s not uncommon for people to experience pain or discomfort after getting braces. The most severe pain symptoms usually subside after one week, although it may take several months for the pain to disappear entirely.
To ease the pain of getting braces, you may want to try the following home remedies:
- Take over the counter pain relievers to reduce pain and swelling.
- Apply Orajel or a comparable oral anesthetic directly to the gums to alleviate pain.
- Avoid hard foods after getting braces. Start by eating soft foods (applesauce, soup, milkshakes, etc.), then slowly reintroduce harder foods into your diet.
- Try gargling with salt water to alleviate pain. This also helps to keep your mouth clean as it adjusts to the braces.
- Use a soft toothbrush for daily brushing. Brush gently and slowly so as not to irritate the gums.
Do I need to get adjustments?
Yes. As your treatment progresses, your teeth will shift, requiring your dentist or orthodontist to provide adjustments as needed. The same goes with Invisalign — your doctor will provide you with different sets of trays to wear as your teeth gradually straighten.
Typically, your doctor will ask that you come in about once a month for adjustments. These appointments also allow your doctor to see how your treatment is progressing.
Getting Braces – Next Steps
If you’re interested in getting braces but are worried about the pain, talk to your doctor about some other things you can do to ease the pain that comes after getting braces. If you’re concerned about the actual process of getting braces, you may want to explore anxiety free dentistry as an option. Your doctor can provide you with sedation to help you feel at ease while getting braces.
If time is a concern of yours, consider Six Month Smiles as an option. These special braces offer quicker results than traditional braces, making them ideal to adults who don’t want to sport a mouth full of metal for several years. They’re also tooth colored, which is appealing for those who aren’t fond of how traditional braces look.