Patient Care

Learn All About Your Braces:

Here are a few tips about braces:

FOOD LIST:  Eating proper foods and minimizing sugar intake is essential during orthodontic treatment.  Your braces are precise appliances that can be damaged by eating hard or sticky foods.  Sticky or sugary foods can cause marks to form on your teeth or even cause tooth decay.


Hard and Sticky Foods to Avoid:                                    

Hard candy       Popcorn          Gum           Caramels           Nuts           Jerky          Taffy          

Licorice         Ice            Hard crusts          Starbursts         Gummy Bears


  • Whole fruits and vegetables, such as apples and carrots should be cut into small bite size pieces
  • Avoid soda and drinks that contain sugar
  • Avoid biting on hard objects, such as pencils, pens or fingernails


ADJUSTING TO YOUR BRACES:  It’s normal for your teeth to be sore for a couple of days.  You will notice this soreness generally begins the day after your braces are placed.  To manage this mild discomfort, have soft foods available to eat.  If desired, taking Advil or Tylenol will also help.


Your lips and cheeks will also need some time to adjust to the feel of your new braces.  Rinsing daily with warm salt water can help your tissues adjust more quickly.  Use the wax to cover parts of your braces if you notice any particular area of irritation. If a bracket comes off before your next appointment, please call us.


A GUIDE TO YOUR BRACES:Braces identification guide

1) Bracket – The attachment bonded to the tooth or welded to a band

2) Arch wire– A removable wire that connects all the brackets. This wire works to straighten the teeth.

3) Elastic tie – Rubber ring (the colors) that holds wire in the bracket

4) Hooks– Used to attach rubber bands.

5) Band– A metal ring with a bracket attached (mainly for back teeth)


Brushing after every meal is the best way to ensure your teeth and gums stay healthy during your treatment. 



1. Angle your toothbrush to clean between your braces and your gums.

Brushing 1



2. Use small circular motions to massage your gums and remove plaque.

Brushing 2



3.  Brush the inside and chewing surfaces of your teeth.

Brushing 3




Floss between all teeth once a day.  Thread the floss behind your wire and between each bracket.  Clean the sides of teeth and under gums by pulling the floss in a C-shape around the tooth and moving with a gentle up-and-down motion.  


Why floss?

Flossing removes plaque that the toothbrush cannot reach.  By flossing regularly you can do your part to maintain healthy teeth and gums!



1. Carefully thread floss behind the wire. A floss threader is helpful.

Floss 1


2. Continue to guide floss so it is behind the wire and can slide easily between your teeth.

Floss 2

3.  Slide floss between each tooth.  Gently move the floss up and down as it hugs the side of your tooth.

Floss 3

What if you have a poking wire? Watch this video to learn how to handle it.

We are happy to help you!  If you have any questions, please give us a call.