Table of Contents

What to Know Before You Get Braces to Straighten Your Teeth

Getting braces is a significant milestone in the quest for a more beautiful and healthy smile. As you prepare to embrace this orthodontic journey, there are essential things you should know to make the process smoother. From dealing with minor inconveniences to understanding the benefits, this comprehensive guide will help you navigate the world of braces with confidence.

So, let's dive in and explore the things you should know before getting braces.

Key Takeaways

  •  The initial period of treatment may require some time to settle in the mouth and may lead to some ulcers in some cases, which go away in a few days as the patient becomes accustomed to the brackets on teeth.
  •  Regular orthodontist appointments are necessary during braces treatment to monitor progress and make necessary adjustments to achieve the final desired outcome.
  •  Maintaining proper care and upkeep of your retainers is vital in preserving the alignment of your teeth once your braces have been removed.
  •  Getting braces can lead to increased self-confidence, improved oral health, and the long-lasting benefits of a straight and aligned smile.

Prepare for soreness and discomfort

Getting braces can be uncomfortable initially. Your teeth will need some time to adapt to the new hardware. You might experience soreness and tenderness in the days following your orthodontic appointment.

The soreness you experience is due to the pressure applied by the braces to shift your teeth into the desired position. Your teeth and the surrounding soft tissues may become irritated, and you might find it uncomfortable to eat or even talk.

To alleviate this discomfort, consider taking over-the-counter pain relievers recommended by your orthodontist. Additionally, a soft diet, which includes foods like khichdi, idly, and fruit juices, can help prevent further irritation. Remember that the soreness is a sign that your braces are working, so it's a temporary inconvenience that will ultimately lead to a beautiful, straight smile.

Foods like popcorn and gum can be off-limits

One of the first lessons you'll learn with braces is that certain foods are no longer your friends. Popcorn and gum, in particular, are now off-limits. These food items have the potential to become trapped in your braces or cause damage, necessitating additional visits to the orthodontist. Instead, embrace softer foods and give your teeth and braces a break.

While it may be disappointing to give up some of your favourite snacks, it's important to remember that this sacrifice is temporary. The last thing you want is to damage your braces or prolong your treatment by indulging in foods that can harm them. So, say goodbye to these crunchy and sticky delights for the time being and focus on the ultimate goal – a perfectly aligned smile.

Brushing and flossing will take extra effort

Maintaining proper oral hygiene becomes crucial when you have braces. To maintain optimal oral hygiene, it's essential to approach brushing and flossing with extra care and patience, ensuring that no food particles become lodged in your braces. Specialized orthodontic toothbrushes and floss threaders can be your allies in keeping your teeth clean.

Braces create nooks and crannies where food particles can hide, making them more susceptible to decay and gum disease. Proper oral hygiene is essential to prevent these issues. You'll need to adjust your brushing technique, using a soft-bristle toothbrush and angling it to reach under and around the wires and brackets of your braces. Don't forget to floss daily using threaders or floss designed for braces to remove debris between your teeth.

Regular dental check-ups and cleanings are essential components of your orthodontic journey. Your orthodontist and dentist will work together to ensure that your teeth and braces remain in good health throughout your treatment.

Expect regular orthodontist appointments

Brace yourself for a series of appointments with your orthodontist. Regular check-ups are essential to adjust and maintain your braces, ensuring they're doing their job correctly. These appointments are vital in achieving the best results from your orthodontic treatment.

Appointments typically occur every 4 to 6 weeks to adjust the wires and brackets as your teeth move. These adjustments help keep your treatment on track, and they're a vital part of achieving the smile you desire. Be prepared to take time off from school or work to attend these appointments.

Orthodontic appointments are not only for adjustments but also for monitoring the progress of your treatment. Your orthodontist will assess how your teeth are moving and make any necessary modifications to ensure the best possible outcome.

Don't forget to wear your retainers

Once your braces come off, your orthodontic journey doesn't end. You'll be required to wear retainers to keep your newly aligned teeth in place. Neglecting this step can lead to shifting teeth and negate all the hard work you put into your braces.

Retainers are crucial for maintaining the results of your orthodontic treatment. They are typically worn full-time initially and then gradually reduced to nighttime wear. Your orthodontist will furnish you with precise instructions regarding when and how to wear your retainers. It's important to follow these instructions diligently to prevent any relapse of tooth misalignment.

Remember that the retention phase is a significant part of your orthodontic journey. It ensures that your beautiful smile remains as perfect as the day your braces were removed.

Embrace coloured bands for a fun look

Adding a splash of colour to your braces can make the experience more enjoyable. Embrace coloured bands for a fun and personalized appearance. It's a chance to express your style while improving your smile.

One of the perks of having braces is the opportunity to add a touch of personal flair. You can choose coloured bands to decorate your braces, making them more vibrant and fun. Whether you opt for your favourite colour, a holiday theme, or simply alternating colours for a unique pattern, the possibilities are endless.

Coloured bands not only make your braces stand out but also provide a sense of ownership and creativity during your orthodontic journey. They can turn a potentially daunting process into a more enjoyable and self-expressive experience.

Wax is your friend for irritation

If you experience irritation from braces, don't fret. Orthodontic wax can be your best friend. Apply it to any sharp or uncomfortable edges of your braces to provide relief and prevent sores in your mouth.

Orthodontic wax is a lifesaver when it comes to managing irritation caused by braces. It's a soft, pliable substance that you can apply to the brackets, wires, or any other part of your braces that is causing discomfort. Orthodontic wax forms a protective barrier between the metal components of your braces and the sensitive tissues of your mouth, effectively preventing sores and abrasions.

You can find orthodontic wax at most drugstores, and it's an essential item to have on hand throughout your orthodontic treatment. Don't hesitate to use it whenever you experience discomfort, and make sure to carry some with you for on-the-go relief.

Say goodbye to nail-biting and pen-chewing habits

Braces make it challenging to indulge in habits like nail-biting or pen-chewing. This might be a hidden benefit, as breaking these habits is step towards better oral health.

Braces serve as a deterrent to certain common oral habits that can be harmful to your teeth. Nail-biting and pen-chewing are not only unsanitary but can also damage your braces, prolonging your treatment. This may be the perfect opportunity to kick these habits to the curb.

Nail-biting, in particular, can lead to a host of dental problems. It can cause your teeth to shift, potentially undoing the progress made by your braces. Additionally, it can damage the wires and brackets, leading to costly repairs and more frequent orthodontic appointments.

Pen-chewing, while less common, can also be harmful to your braces. Chewing on hard objects can bend or break the wires and brackets, causing disruptions in your treatment plan. It's best to find alternative ways to cope with stress or boredom, such as stress balls or mindfulness exercises.

Wax on braces can be a little gross

Using orthodontic wax is a fantastic way to alleviate discomfort, but don't be surprised if it occasionally collects food particles. It can be a bit gross, but it's a small price to pay for a more comfortable experience. This is an unavoidable side effect of using wax on your braces. As you consume food, small particles may get caught in the wax, and it can be a bit disconcerting.

To manage this, it's essential to clean your braces and teeth thoroughly after every meal. Brushing and flossing diligently, along with using tools like interdental brushes, can help ensure that food particles are removed, reducing the likelihood of any issues related to trapped debris. While it might be a bit gross at times, the benefits of wax far outweigh this minor inconvenience.

Sports? Get a mouthguard

If you're an active individual or involved in sports, it's crucial to protect your teeth and braces. Invest in a quality mouthguard to prevent injuries and damage to your orthodontic appliances.

Participating in sports while wearing braces requires extra caution. Your braces can pose a potential risk to your oral health during physical activities. In contact sports or even non-contact sports, there's a chance of getting hit in the face, which could lead to injuries or damage to your braces.

Investing in a mouthguard is a prudent decision. A mouthguard custom-fitted by an orthodontist provides the best protection for teeth and braces. This mouthguard will help absorb and distribute the force of impact, reducing the risk of broken brackets, wires, and oral injuries.

Wearing a mouthguard can also minimize the risk of soft tissue injuries in your mouth, such as lacerations to the lips and cheeks. It's a small investment to ensure that your orthodontic treatment remains on track and that your teeth are safe during physical activities.

Braces don't affect your dating life

Worried that braces might hinder your dating life? Rest assured, they don't! The idea of having braces during your dating years can be a concern for some individuals. However, the reality is often quite different from what you might imagine. While it's natural to have some self-consciousness about your appearance, braces rarely have a negative impact on your dating life.

In fact, many people find braces endearing and charming. They see them as a sign of dedication to personal improvement and admire your commitment to a healthier smile. As your treatment progresses and your teeth become straighter and more beautiful, your confidence will grow, making you even more attractive to potential partners.

Remember that self-confidence and a positive attitude are some of the most attractive qualities one can possess. Embrace your journey to a better smile, and don't let braces hold you back from enjoying your social and dating life.

Your smile will be worth it in the end

While the journey may have its challenges, remember that your smile will be worth it in the end. Braces may bring temporary inconvenience but offer a lifetime of confidence and improved oral health.

At times, the challenges of living with braces can feel daunting, but it's crucial to keep your end goal in mind—a beautifully straight and healthy smile. The discomfort, dietary restrictions, and occasional inconveniences are all part of the process.

As your braces gradually transform your teeth, you'll begin to see the results of your dedication. Your smile will become more radiant and aligned, and the confidence you gain will extend far beyond your appearance.


In conclusion, embarking on a journey with braces is a significant step towards a brighter, healthier smile. Knowing what to expect and how to handle various situations can make the experience smoother and more rewarding. So, embrace the changes, and remember that your dazzling smile awaits you at the end of this orthodontic adventure!

Book your appointment at Hope Dental & Esthetic Clinic, Noida, to know more!


Before getting braces, several factors need consideration beyond the aesthetics of your smile. Prior dental work should be completed, dietary adjustments might be necessary, and maintaining meticulous oral hygiene becomes crucial. Athletes may require a mouthguard for added protection. Braces demand commitment, potentially causing discomfort, but capturing a "before" selfie can be an exciting way to document the journey.
Conditions such as early, late, or irregular loss of baby teeth, abnormal or improper alignment of teeth, delayed eruption of adult teeth, disproportionate jaws or teeth concerning the face, crowded or misplaced teeth, missing or extra teeth, and overbites or underbites are factors that might necessitate orthodontic treatment. These issues can affect dental health, appearance, and overall oral function, prompting the need for intervention from an orthodontist.
Getting braces isn't typically painful when they're initially placed on your teeth. However, you might feel soreness as your teeth start adjusting and shifting. This discomfort isn't sharp pain but more like a dull ache, usually lasting around 2 to 3 days as your teeth adapt to the braces.
Adjusting to having brackets and wires in your mouth is a process that takes time. Initially, it might feel like a significant change, making you think you look different, with sensations like protruding lips or a changed face. However, much of this perception is due to the new and unique sensation. Rest assured, you still look like yourself, and these feelings tend to diminish as you get used to wearing braces.
If you wear braces, it is normal to experience soreness or discomfort when you have them fitted or tightened brackets and wires. Most pain or discomfort is caused by the pressure needed to create sufficient tooth movement for the braces to do their work.
Indeed, approximately two weeks after getting braces, you can generally resume eating normal foods. However, it's essential to note that not all foods are equally suitable or easy to consume with braces. Braces come with restrictions on eating certain foods like chewing gums, popcorn, pizza, etc, which your doctor will guide you about.
Braces enhance your overall appearance by aligning your teeth beautifully, resulting in an aesthetically pleasing outcome. This improvement often leads to increased self-confidence and a more attractive smile, encouraging a natural tendency to smile more frequently.
Dr. Mimansa Bhoj

BDS, MDS (Oral and Maxillofacial Surgeon)

University Gold medalist

About the Author

Dr. Mimansa is a highly accomplished oral and maxillofacial surgeon with a wealth of experience in her field. With a strong academic background and numerous gold medals, she has treated over 5000 patients for various oral and maxillofacial problems. Dr. Mimansa has practiced in different parts of India and has learned from the best in the field, making her an expert in OMFS and Dentistry. Known for her friendly and empathetic approach, she believes in providing treatments with care and compassion to heal her patients. With academic achievements, multiple scientific publications, and her current role as an Associate Professor, Dr. Mimansa is dedicated to providing the highest quality of care. She has also established a safe space, Hope Dental and Esthetic Clinic, during the pandemic, ensuring the utmost safety for patients while providing dental and medical treatments.