How Long Do Braces Hurt?

Starting orthodontic treatment can be a daunting thought, knowing that wearing braces may be uncomfortable. As trusted orthodontists, we believe in providing comprehensive information and guidance to our patients, empowering them to make informed decisions about their orthodontic treatment.

So, let’s put your worries to rest about getting braces, straighter teeth, and braces pain. We’ll explore the factors that contribute to discomfort during braces, how long it typically lasts, and what you can do to alleviate any pain.

What To Expect When Getting Braces

So you’re getting braces and just like any other orthodontic treatment, an orthodontist will oversee and examine your teeth and may take X-rays or impressions to create a personalised treatment plan. During the actual placement of braces, you may experience slight additional pressure or discomfort as the brackets are affixed to your teeth using a special adhesive.

Afterwards, your orthodontist will attach the archwires, which apply gentle additional pressure to gradually shift your teeth into proper alignment for straighter teeth. Initially, you may feel pain and tenderness in your mouth, which can be managed with a pain reliever like panadol or nurofen, over-the-counter medication and orthodontic wax.

But Why Do Braces Hurt?

Braces can cause pain because they apply gentle yet constant pressure to gradually shift and align your teeth. This can temporarily lead to mild or moderate discomfort, which is typically felt during the first few days after braces are installed and after they are tightened. Over-the-counter medications and pain relievers, or orthodontic wax, can usually help alleviate the pain.

It’s important to note that initial pain is expected, especially when braces have just been placed onto the teeth for the first time. This pain or mild to moderate discomfort should last between four days to about a week, but can be relieved with some personal care and oral health pain relief.

Coping With Braces Pain

As an orthodontic practice, coping with braces pain is a common concern amongst our patients at The Orthodontic Place, and naturally, we understand their hesitation around their discomfort and the desire to stop braces pain. We often advise our patients to use over-the-counter pain relievers as directed and apply orthodontic wax to alleviate any irritation.

What Can I Do At Home To Alleviate Pain?

Perhaps you have new braces or you’ve recently been to have your braces tightened. If your braces hurt we have a number of suggestions that can offer some pain relief and temporarily stop pain or discomfort.

Eat Soft Foods

Stick to a diet of soft foods that require minimal chewing, such as yoghurt, mashed potatoes, smoothies, or soup. Avoid hard, crunchy, or sticky foods that can increase discomfort.

To reduce inflammation, indulge in some cold foods like ice-cream or ice water which can temporarily soothe the mild discomfort and braces pain around teeth and gums.

Use an Ice-Pack

Place an ice pack or a clean cloth soaked in cold water against your cheeks or jaw near the area of discomfort. The cold temperature can help numb the area and reduce swelling, providing temporary relief for sore teeth or any other areas that feel uncomfortable.

Buy Over-the-counter Pain Relievers

Non-prescription pain medications such as ibuprofen or paracetamol can help reduce braces pain and discomfort. Follow the recommended dosage instructions and consult with your healthcare provider if you have any concerns.

Apply Orthodontic Wax

Apply a small amount of orthodontic wax provided by our clinic’s orthodontist onto any sharp edges or protruding wires that are causing irritation inside your mouth. The wax creates a barrier between your braces and oral tissues, minimising discomfort.

Gentle Oral Hygiene

Brush your teeth gently using a soft-bristle toothbrush and be mindful around the braces. Flossing can be challenging, but using floss threaders or interdental brushes can help maintain oral hygiene and prevent further discomfort.

Salt Water Rinses

Rinse your mouth with a warm saltwater solution (half a teaspoon of salt in a glass of warm water) after meals to keep your mouth clean and reduce irritation.

Distract Yourself!

Engage in activities that divert your attention from the discomfort, such as going to school, continue your extra curricular activities, listening to music, or watching a movie.

Pain Relief Not Working?

If you keep thinking about the pain associated with ‘how long do braces hurt for?’ then don’t hesitate to contact your orthodontist if you’re worried about the extent of discomfort. At The Orthodontic Place, we emphasise the importance of open communication in coping with braces pain. If you experience severe or prolonged pain or discomfort, we encourage you to promptly reach out to our orthodontic team.

With our expertise, we can provide valuable advice, make necessary adjustments, and offer personalised recommendations to effectively manage pain, ensuring your orthodontic journey is as comfortable as possible. Your well-being is our top priority, and we’re here to support you every step of the way.

Reach Out To The Orthodontic Place Today

Whether you need your orthodontist to tighten or adjust your braces, or you’re thinking about starting your next orthodontic treatment, we can help. We offer a variety of braces and treatment options to meet your individual needs. Contact us today to learn more about braces and how we can help you achieve your smile goals. Give us a call or send an email today to book an appointment.