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James Karpac Orthodontics

Life After Braces: What You Need to Know

Photo by Gabriel Silvério on Unsplash

Congratulations! Your braces are coming off! While this is the end of something big, it’s also a new beginning. You may be wondering how this changes your routine. Here are some of the things you need to know as you head into life after braces.

When the Braces Come Off

At your final adjustment, your orthodontist will let you know it is time for your braces to come off. Your next appointment will take about an hour. Your orthodontist will remove your braces, carefully taking each bracket off with pliers and then cleaning off any remaining glue. Don’t worry! This won’t hurt. Once your brackets are all off, the orthodontist will carefully check your teeth for any cavities, decay, or other concerns. Finally, he or she will take an impression of your teeth to serve as the form for your retainer. 

Time to Celebrate

While taking care of your teeth is extremely important, so is celebrating milestones. With this in mind, make sure you indulge in some of the special treats you’ve been missing while you’ve had braces. Apples, corn on the cob, bubble gum, and hard candy are all on the menu. Of course, be sure to brush and floss very well afterward! Also, be sure to take some photos of your beautiful new smile. 

What to Expect

After braces, remember that you need time to adjust to using your mouth without them. All of the ways you normally move your mouth, like chewing and talking, will feel different and even odd. Don’t worry, this feeling won’t last for long. Also, your teeth will look different. You haven’t seen them much in a while! There may be some discoloration, but it will be minor and go away quickly as well.

How to Keep Great Teeth

You’ve worked hard for your straight teeth, so be sure to maintain them. Follow up as soon as you can with your orthodontist to get your retainer, and listen closely to your instructions on when and how long to wear them. Retainers help your teeth hold their new positions. Before long, you’ll be able to switch to only nighttime wear. Additionally, keep up with your dental cleanings and daily maintenance. If you notice any problems with your teeth, such as decay or shifting, be sure to contact your orthodontist right away.

There really isn’t a feeling like the joy of getting braces removed. You’ve invested a lot in your amazing smile, and now it’s yours to enjoy. With these simple tips, you’ll be ready to jump right into your life after braces. If you have any questions about braces for yourself or someone else, or need help managing other orthodontic issues, contact Dr. James Karpac today.