For children and teenagers, getting braces is a major transition. It can be difficult to adjust to new habits, rules about what you can and cannot eat, and being concerned about what your friends or classmates might say. Braces, on the other hand, aren’t the end of the world; they’re the start of a brighter one with a great smile waiting. Here are some pointers to help your child prepare for braces:
Talk about your options with them.
When discussing treatment options with your orthodontist, you may have questions as a parent, but your child may have many more. Making a list of questions for the orthodontist is an excellent way to get them involved. Less unanswered questions = less anxiety and worry.
Explain the Procedures to Them
It is normal for your child to be anxious about the big day. While applying braces takes time, it is a simple procedure. Talking with your child about the steps ahead of time can put them at ease. The brackets are first glued on, then the connecting wire is applied, and the elastic bands are wrapped around the brackets. Your child can even select the colors for the bands!
The Best Foods Are Soft
Your child’s teeth will most likely be sore for the first few days. Avoid foods that are hard or crunchy! Softer or liquid foods, such as pasta, mashed potatoes, and soup, are excellent choices. Colder foods, such as yogurt and ice cream, are also beneficial because the cold sensation can alleviate soreness.
Assist Them in Changing Their Cleaning Habits
Brushing and flossing are more difficult when you have braces on. Food loves to hide in any small space it can find, so good cleaning habits are essential. Using an electric toothbrush is a good place to start, and there are special brushes that can reach underneath the wires and brackets. Floss picks can also help with those difficult-to-reach back teeth and prevent fingers from being pricked by wires or brackets.
Your Orthodontic Wax Is Your Best Friend
Brackets are frequently responsible for irritation or sores on the insides of the lips. Another common problem is back teeth wires poking into the cheeks or lips. Orthodontic wax (also known as braces wax) is a simple solution. Simply roll the wax (it’s very soft) between your fingers and apply it to anything that is rubbing or poking. Usually, your orthodontist will provide it for free.
Concentrate on the Positives
Braces can be physically uncomfortable, but they can also make your child feel embarrassed. Classmates may tease or mock them, so remind your child that the majority of their classmates are wearing, have worn, or will wear braces at some point. Wearing braces for a year or two may seem interminable to your child, and he or she may become impatient or frustrated with them. Encourage them to consider how much better their smile will look once their braces are removed. Braces are only temporary; a beautiful smile lasts forever.