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What are orthodontic elastics?

Elastics are essentially tiny elastic bands that are worn between the upper and lower brace to correct the way the teeth bite together. Not everyone will have to wear them but most patients will be asked to at some stage during their orthodontic treatment.

Elastics are an important part of treatment and their success is solely down to patient compliance. If your orthodontist asks you to wear elastics as part of your treatment plan it is essential you wear them as instructed to achieve the best result! If you run out of elastics just contact the practice and we will happily send out some more to you in the post.

How often do I get my braces checked?

Once your brace has been fitted your orthodontist will ask to see you every 6-10 weeks to make adjustments. The interval between appointments will all depend on what stage of treatment you are at and what adjustments you orthodontist needs make next time . Speak to a member of our reception team to book your next visit with us, this can be done straight away after your last appointment or over the phone on 01962 710880.

What should I use to clean my braces?

Now you have your brace fitted you might find cleaning a bit trickier, but excellent oral health is essential. You will find that food gets trapped more easily in your teeth now and making sure you remove it all is important to prevent permanent damage to your teeth.

You must, whenever possible, brush your teeth after every time you eat. This may mean you have to take a manual toothbrush with you to school or work. It is fine to use either a manual or electric toothbrush with a brace, just remember you will need to charge your electric toothbrush more often and the heads of both brushes will need to be replaced regularly.

Using inter-dental brushes (TePe) to clean under the wire and around the brackets will help with effective cleaning of the brace, along with the regular use of disclosing tablets to highlight any areas that you may have missed when cleaning.

Mouthwash can be helpful in reducing the risk of damage to the tooth surface and minimising the risk of ‘white marks’ on the teeth. We do recommend an alcohol-free daily mouthwash with a certain level of fluoride. We are always happy to advise you or answer any questions you may have, so please give us a call on 01962 710880.

What if I play contact sports?

If you play any type of contact sport then wearing a mouth guard is essential, with or without a brace fitted!

Mouthguards are the best way to protect the teeth from damage while playing sports. The best type of mouthguard is one that is custom made for your teeth ensuring it is the best fit and therefore less likely to be dislodged. Alternatively there are a variety of stock mouth guards available to buy which can be moulded at home. At Contour Orthodontists we aim to give you a beautiful smile which means protecting your teeth from damage during treatment, therefore we supply both custom made and stock retainers for our patients to purchase.

Call our reception team on 01962 710880 to inquire about mouth guards.

What foods should I avoid with my braces?

When you have your brace fitted it is really important to bear in mind that there is now something in your mouth at all times, and it is breakable!

Therefore when it comes to food there are certain things to avoid. Anything sticky or hard, including chewing gum should not be eaten as they are likely to damage the brace. Some examples of foods to avoid are, toffees, chocolate bars, all sweets, biscuits, very crunchy crisps, nuts, crusty bread (such as pizza crusts) and similar foods. Fruit and vegetables should be cut into small pieces and chewed carefully on the back teeth.

If you find yourself getting hungry between meals we recommend you choose snacks such as bread, ham, cheese or plain crisps. Drinks should be water, milk and tea or coffee without sugar. Juices should be kept to a minimum and drank at meal times. It is a common misconception that drinking  through a straw will reduce the damage caused by sugary and fizzy drinks, unfortunately this is not the case and these should definitely be avoided especially with a brace fitted.

COVID-19 – For all our latest updates please see our dedicated COVID-19 page. We update this page regularly with all the latest advice for our patients, but please contact us if you need any further assistance.