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Sore Teeth from Braces? Here’s How to Ease Pain and Discomfort


rthodontics became the first dental specialty in 1900. Since then, millions of people have chosen to straighten their teeth with orthodontic braces.

Unfortunately, a little pain is normal. If you have sore teeth from braces, you’re not alone.

We created this guide to help you ease the pain and discomfort.

Try these tips today to learn how to ease braces pain!

1. Use an Ice Pack

New braces are an exciting path towards your new smile. When you’re in pain all day though, you probably won’t feel like smiling.

As you determine how to deal with braces pain, start with the basics. The cold pressure from an ice pack can soothe the inflammation associated with your pain. Try applying an ice pack to the outside of your mouth for 10 minutes at a time.

Make sure to wrap the ice pack in a towel.

Otherwise, you might have to add freezer burn to your list of pain issues.

The ice pack should reduce your inflammation and ease your sore teeth. You can apply the ice pack throughout the day or when your pain flares to keep your inflammation down.

2. Drink Cold Water

If you’re worried about costly pain relief options, this one is on the cost-effective side.

Try drinking cold water to ease sore teeth from braces. Like the ice pack, the water’s cold temperature will help decrease inflammation.

Unlike the ice pack, however, drinking cold water will numb the inside of your mouth. If placing an ice pack against your face isn’t enough to relieve your braces pain, try drinking cold water instead.

Sucking on ice cubes works, too. Just don’t chew them.

In the meantime, make sure to avoid acidic drinks and foods. Drinks that contain citrus can aggravate your mouth sores. Instead of causing yourself additional discomfort, avoid acidic drinks and foods for a few weeks.

3. Eat Soft Foods

After you get your braces, your teeth will start to shift and likely feel sensitive as a result.

Try eating soft foods such as jello, smoothies, pudding, soups, or mashed potatoes.

These soft foods will give your teeth a break from chewing.

Hard and sticky foods, on the other hand, can cause your braces to break. Avoid the irritation (and cost of getting them fixed) by changing your diet. To dodge having sore teeth from braces, cut out foods such as:

  • Chips
  • Nuts
  • Jerky
  • Taffy
  • Hard candies

These foods can damage your braces or cause additional orthodontic pain.

Make sure not to chew on other hard objects, too. These can include ice cubes, pencils, and pens, so keep them out of your mouth!

4. Take a Pain Pill

If you decide to use over-the-counter pain relief medications, make sure to check the dosage instructions.

It’s not recommended to take pain pills too often. Try taking ibuprofen or acetaminophen in addition to these tips. Make sure you don’t take both at the same time, though.

5. Use an Oral Anesthetic

Over four million people in the United States wear braces. To help relieve their pain from braces, many people choose to use an oral anesthetic.

Ask your orthodontist if they can suggest any options. You can apply Anbesol and Orajel directly to your teeth and gums. Use your fingertip or a cotton swab to apply the numbing gel where you’re feeling discomfort.

The gel won’t taste great, but at least it will ease the pain.

6. Change the Routine

You can also add a toothpaste for sensitive teeth to your daily routine. Many brands create a special toothpaste for sensitivity. These products include potassium nitrate, which will protect the nerves in your gums.

A natural toothpaste brand will use an alternative to potassium nitrate.

Both are safe to use.

Make sure to use a soft-bristled toothbrush, too. Toothbrushes offer a range of bristle options, but the softer bristles will take it easy on your teeth and gums.

As you brush your teeth, make sure to remain gentle. The first few days after getting your braces can leave your teeth feeling sensitive. During that first few weeks, brush with care.

Use slow, circular brushes. Keep your mouth open wide and take your time as you brush, too.

Don’t forget to floss after every meal. Otherwise, you could leave yourself at risk for swollen gums, cavities, and other tooth issues. Even if you experience sore teeth from braces, it’s important to maintain your oral hygiene routine.

7. Remain Patient

Try to give it a trial period before you visit your orthodontist. It’s normal to feel some soreness from your braces. Before making an appointment, give the tips we mentioned above a try.

If you’re still in intolerable pain after a few weeks, check in with your orthodontist.

They’ll give your teeth a look to determine if there’s an issue with your braces. In some cases, your orthodontist might need to loosen your braces. Don’t worry; tightening your braces doesn’t mean they’ll work faster or better for straightening your teeth.

The soreness you’re experiencing might be due to a protruding wire.

In some cases, one of the wire ends from your braces will rub against the inside of your cheek. This can cause mouth sores and leave you in discomfort. If you think you have this issue, ask the orthodontist to snip the ends of the wires.

Depending on your level of pain, your orthodontist might also prescribe stronger pain medication. Let them know if the over-the-counter medications you tried didn’t help.

Your orthodontist might be able to suggest other treatments. For example, they might urge you to try a bite wafer. This can generate blood circulation in your gums to ease your pain.

Say Goodbye to Your Sore Teeth from Braces

Sore teeth from braces? It’s time to ease the pain away! Try using these seven tips today to see if they help.

If you’re still experiencing pain after using these tips, make sure to speak with your orthodontist. Schedule an appointment at our office today to put an end to your sore teeth.

Schedule your FREE first appointment today!

Your first visit includes a full exam, x-rays, & consultation with Dr. Ogden—all for free!

About the Author: Robert T. Ogden, D.D.S.

Dr. Robert T. Ogden D.D.S. is an independent orthodontist serving Central Florida since 1994, and is proud to be the affordable option for local families who want straight teeth that lead to perfect smiles, all backed by a kind and friendly staff that instantly makes you feel at home. We take the time to explain all of your options, from In-Ovation C clear braces or SPEED System metal braces to clear aligners like Invisalign™. Plus, our state-of-the-art offices are designed to make your visit as fast and comfortable as possible. Schedule your free consultation today!

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