What Helps With Braces Pain?
Having a nice smile is one of the most important things to have in any social situation. Not only does it make yourself feel better, but it has a major impact on the people around you. It makes you seem more friendly and approachable. According to Align Beauty Orthodontics, a seasoned braces orthodontist in Dublin, Ohio, teeth are a major aspect of making a good smile.
Even though braces help enormously in having beautiful, straight teeth, there’s no denying that they can be uncomfortable. Your child may experience some particular discomfort after their appointment to have their braces tightened.
When braces are tightened, the orthodontist adjusts the wire in the braces to force the teeth to shift more. This movement of the teeth can cause your child’s mouth to be sore for days. Sometimes the metal of the braces can cause irritation to their inner cheeks and gums.
Thankfully, there are a variety of effective ways to deal with braces pain. The following tips are great ways to avoid pain.
Over-the-Counter Pain Medication
Over-the-Counter medication is one of the best ways to relieve braces pain. Medicine like aspirin, ibuprofen, acetaminophen, or naproxen are great ways to get rid of the pain. I recommend taking some medication before the orthodontist appointment, so they start fighting the pain before it even begins.
But make sure that they take the medication only as directed. Though these pain medications are not addictive, they should only be taken if other methods don’t work. If you have any questions about the pain medication, consult your child’s orthodontist.
Apply Oral Analgesics
Benzocaine is a pain reliever that comes in a liquid or gel form and can be applied directly to your child’s teeth and gums. You can help your child apply the medication using a cotton swab or a clean finger. The taste of the medication may not taste good, but it is an effective way to numb the mouth pain from braces. Make sure to follow the instructions on the packaging.
Use an Ice Pack
Since some of your child’s braces pain is due to inflammation, you can apply a cold compress. It is an effective way of combatting pain. Having your child hold an ice pack to the outside of their mouth can help reduce any swelling. A sore mouth is just like any other injury, and the ice will help soothe it. If you don’t have an ice pack, a bag of frozen vegetables can always work.
Apply Orthodontic Wax
It’s common for children with braces to experience irritation where the metal rubs against their cheeks, lips, or gums. Ask your child’s orthodontist for soft orthodontic wax. The wax can be applied to the places that cause chafing, so it can prevent any discomfort or sores from developing.
Rinse with Salt Water
As with other pediatric dental services, newly-tightened braces can irritate the sensitive skin in your child’s mouth. Constant rubbing from the metal wires can result in sores, which can add to the problem of braces pain. If your child has any sores, have them rinse with a warm saltwater solution. This will help alleviate discomfort and will help prevent any potential infection.
You can get a saltwater rinse from most drug stores, or you can make your own at home. To make a salt water rinse, dissolve half a teaspoon of salt into a cup of warm water. Have your child gargle and swish with the solution for 60 seconds before spitting it out.
Try Cold Foods and Drinks
Drinking cold water or eating something soft and cold like ice cream can function similarly to ice packs. The coldness will help reduce inflammation and pain while producing a pleasant numbing sensation to any achy areas. If your child does choose something sweet like an ice pop or ice cream, make sure they brush their teeth afterward.
Your child can also suck on ice to help relieve their braces pain, but be sure that they do not chew it. Chewing on ice can cause damage to the gums, microscopic fractures in the enamel, and even brake teeth.
Adjust Your Diet
When your child has their braces tightened, it causes their teeth and gums to become sore. To combat this braces pain, have them avoid foods that will further irritate their mouths. Hard, crunchy foods like chips and raw vegetables can be painful to eat and should be avoided for a few days. Instead, they should opt for soft foods like mashed potatoes and soup that won’t irritate their already sensitive mouth.
Chew on Frozen Teething Rings
Although teething rings are designed for infants, they can be a very effective tool for combatting braces pain. Your child can gently chew on a frozen teething ring, moving the ring to the places that hurt the most. Gradually, the frozen teething ring will help the pain subside.
Use a Heating Pad
If cold treatments don’t seem to be doing the trick, try the opposite method and apply heat to the affected area. Your child can place a heating pad over the affected area for pain relief. If you don’t have a heating pad, a warm washcloth can be effective as well.
These are all useful tips to make sure that your child isn’t in pain.