Top 10 Best Remedies for Braces Pain Relief

Braces are commonly used in modern dentistry to straighten misaligned teeth and improve oral health. While they are effective in achieving long-term dental goals, they can cause discomfort or pain during treatment. This discomfort may vary from mild irritation to more noticeable pain after adjustments.

To address this, we offer practical strategies to reduce or alleviate brace-related pain, aiming to make your teeth straightening journey more comfortable.

Why do braces cause pain?

Braces exert pressure on teeth to move them into alignment, leading to soreness, tooth pain, or discomfort. This pressure is necessary for braces to work effectively. Pain is often felt after initial fitting or adjustments as braces gradually shift teeth into their correct positions.

It’s important to differentiate between normal adjustment pain and more serious issues. Normal brace discomfort is usually mild to moderate and diminishes within a few days, manageable with over-the-counter pain relief and home remedies.

Severe, sharp, or persistent pain, especially when accompanied by signs of infection like swelling or bleeding, requires immediate attention. These symptoms may indicate problems such as improper brace fitting or broken wires.

If experiencing severe or persistent pain, or if unsure about the pain’s nature, it’s crucial to consult an orthodontist. They can determine whether the pain is part of the adjustment process or indicative of a serious issue. Regular check-ups are also essential to ensure braces are adjusted correctly and monitor treatment progress.

Tips to Braces Pain Relief

Here are some immediate remedies you can try right after your orthodontist appointment:

1. Use Orthodontic Wax

Your Idaho Falls orthodontist should provide enough orthodontic wax to apply over the braces and wires. This wax acts as a protective barrier, preventing irritation and helping your cheeks and lips toughen up over time. It’s especially helpful if you’re experiencing rawness or discomfort.

2. Gargle With Salt Water

Salt water rinses can alleviate pain and reduce the risk of bacterial infection, which can occur when braces cause mouth sores or cuts. Here’s how to do it:

– Mix a quarter to half a teaspoon of table or sea salt with a cup of warm water until it dissolves completely.

– Swish the solution around your mouth and teeth for 30-60 seconds, then spit it out (don’t swallow).

– Repeat as needed for pain relief.

3. Apply an Ice Pack

Using an ice pack can help reduce inflammation and soreness caused by braces. Remember not to apply ice directly to the skin; wrap it in a cloth or towel first. Apply the ice pack with gentle pressure to the affected area for 10-20 minutes.

You can repeat this process if necessary. If ice doesn’t provide relief, you can try using a heating pad instead.

4. Gum Massage

Just like massaging a sore muscle can bring relief, massaging your gums can help alleviate pain too. It’s easy to do—simply gently rub your gums in a circular motion with your finger.

For added effectiveness, try rubbing your gums with a piece of ice before massaging them. However, ensure you only do this for a short time to soothe swollen gums.

5. Maintain Good Dental Hygiene

Taking care of your teeth and braces can significantly reduce pain and discomfort. Remember to keep both your teeth and braces clean to prevent tooth decay and gum inflammation.

Food often gets stuck in the brackets and wires, so thorough cleaning is essential. Brush, floss, and use mouthwash regularly to remove any food particles leftover from meals.

6. Warm Saltwater Rinse

Boil some water and let it cool slightly. Then, mix in some salt and swish the solution around your mouth for about 60 seconds. Spit it out and repeat if needed. The combination of salt and warmth helps heal mouth wounds and reduces pain quickly.

7. Peppermint Tea Bags

After enjoying a cup of peppermint tea, don’t discard the used tea bag. It’s packed with properties that can reduce inflammation and soreness.

Apply the warm, wet teabag to the affected area for relief. Alternatively, you can use peppermint essential oil to numb and soothe the pain.

8 Heat Pads or Warm Washcloths

Heat can also provide relief from oral pain. Try holding a heating pad or warm washcloth against the sore jaw area. Use it as often as needed to ease discomfort.

These simple home remedies can help alleviate braces pain and promote faster healing, making your orthodontic journey more comfortable.

Foods and Drinks to Ease Braces Pain

In addition to medications and topical treatments, certain foods and drinks can help alleviate the discomfort caused by braces. Here are some tried-and-tested options recommended by our patients:

Cold Foods and Drinks

Consuming cold treats like ice cream, smoothies, frozen yogurt, and ice water can provide relief by reducing inflammation and numbing the pain. However, it’s important to avoid soda and sugary drinks and moderate your intake of ice cream.

Hot Foods and Drinks

During colder months, you might prefer warm or hot options to soothe discomfort. Try having hot soup, tea, or oatmeal, as they can have a calming effect on mouth pain.

Soft Foods

Opting for soft foods can help minimize pain and discomfort. Avoid hard, crunchy, and chewy foods, and instead choose options like soups, yogurt, mashed potatoes, and smoothies. Throughout your braces journey, continue avoiding crunchy snacks, raw vegetables, caramels, hard candies, and gum.

Lastly, Be Patient

Braces require time for adjustment, and discomfort is part of the process. Instead of dwelling on the pain, focus on staying patient and finding activities to distract yourself. Going for walks, spending time with friends, cooking, or practicing meditation can help shift your focus away from discomfort. Remember, the discomfort will only last a few days, but the benefits of your new smile will be long-lasting.

When to Seek Help from Your Orthodontist

While wearing braces, it’s crucial to recognize certain symptoms that may indicate the need for professional attention from your orthodontist. Here are signs to watch for:

1. Severe or Persistent Pain: Mild discomfort after adjustments is normal, but if you experience severe or ongoing pain, it’s important to see your orthodontist.

2. Loose or Broken Brackets: If any part of your braces becomes loose or breaks, it requires immediate attention to prevent further issues.

3. Prolonged Mouth Sores or Ulcers: If sores caused by braces don’t heal within a reasonable time, they should be examined by your orthodontist.

4. Signs of Infection: Swelling, severe redness, or pus around your gums and teeth indicate a possible infection that needs immediate attention.

5. Difficulty Eating or Speaking: If braces make it significantly challenging to eat or speak, they may need adjustment.

6. Wire Protrusions: If a wire is sticking out and causing discomfort, it should be professionally addressed.

7. Loose Teeth: While some movement is expected during treatment, noticeably loose teeth should be checked by your orthodontist.

Being aware of these symptoms and seeking timely professional care ensures the health and effectiveness of your orthodontic treatment.

Leave a Comment