Respect the braces!

Hi folks!

It’s been a while since my last post and that’s really because I’m getting very settled with my braces and not much happens on a daily basis that warrants sharing.

However, I thought I should give you newbie brace wearers a heads up about complacency. When I first got braces (and it wasn’t really that long ago) I was forever cleaning my teeth, being very mindful of what I was eating, taking things slow – being careful.

Now, I’ve realised, I’m far less diligent. I do brush my teeth after I eat BUT I’m not racing up to the bathroom a few minutes after swallowing the last bite (or stressing out in town because I can’t find a decent sink to spit in!) I sometimes wait an hour or more before venturing to the nearest sink for teeth cleaning duties. I’ve also started eating larger bites of food (which inevitably get stuck all round my braces) and speeding things up in general.

While this has made things feel a bit more normal I’m not entirely convinced I’m treating my teeth/braces with the care they deserve SO, starting tomorrow, I’m going to find a balance between my current lacksidaisical (is that a word? And if it is, is THAT how you spell it?!) attitude and the near paranoid anguish of those first few days.

I love that I’ve become more accustomed to my braces (although some days – like today – they feel bigger in my mouth than others?!) but I must remember that they need some special care and attention to do their job properly and that, ultimately, we’re all after the same goal – a beautiful smile!

Respect the Braces folks! 😉

brushing

 

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Braces on holiday!

So – we’re nearly a month in to the braces adventure and my teeth and I are getting used to the new routines and restrictions that the ceramic brackets have brought to my daily life.

Well – I thought we were used to it until…da da da daaaaah….a 3 day mini-break in Whitby came up where the normal rules of daily life do not apply! Routine shmoutine says the 3 day mini-break. You’re on your holidays and braces be damned! 😉

So, what issues crop up when you (and your braces) are on holiday?

Problems:

  • Finding ‘braces friendly” food (even harder when you’re vegan I can tell you!) because you can’t just take the food home and blend it!
  • Having to massively cut things up in public (elegance and dignity go out the window – see evidence below!)
  • Teeth cleaning after eating (I have my travel kit BUT you’ve also got to find somewhere relatively private, and up to your own exacting hygiene standards, with a sink – and a decent plughole – so you can have a good brush and spit out of all the food that’s hidden itself round your back teeth!)

 

crumpet

Evidence: Tea-cake made edible by excessive slicing!

Pluses:

  • Because you’re on holiday you can eat chips and mushy peas as often as you like – and they’re lovely and soft (best chips in Whitby – and the only ones not fried in beef dripping – Robertsons)!
  • Ring doughnuts – soft, melt in the mouth and ‘sea-sidey’ 🙂
  • I discovered a Cornish pasty (with the crust cut off) is a very ‘easy to eat’ addition to the ‘braces-friendly’ food list

 

All in all holidays are totally do-able BUT a little bit of foresight and preparation won’t go amiss. Think about where you’re going to clean your teeth after eating (I confess there were a couple of times where I just had to wait and do it later) and also what kind of food you might be ordering when you eat out.

Happy holidays brace wearing buddies!

 

Day 5 -brace brushing grossness!

Well, it’s day 5 of the 18 month marathon that will be my ‘braces adventure’. I’m just starting to get used to them properly and, while conscious of them all the time, I’m beginning to see how they might just feel ‘normal’ after a while.

One thing I’m not used to yet is the ‘brushing ritual’ – or rather, what happens when I brush my teeth/braces. I am a real stickler for cleanliness (especially my teeth) so I’m brushing and flossing after every meal (and not snacking at all in between times). What gets me is that no matter how small the pieces of food are that I eat and no matter how much I try to chew them I still end up brushing out, what I consider to be, huge bits of food from behind and around my braces every time – ewww!

There are two possible solutions to this: put up with it or liquidise every single thing I eat until it’s akin to milkshake! 😉

Bearing in mind my penchant for potatoes and rice I think I may have to go the ‘put up and shut up’ route (though I love mash I think a soupy version of potatoes sounds less than appetising).

Sticking with the food theme I was surprised to discover that there are specialist cookbooks in America just for braces wearers. Most brilliantly, the publishers are metalmouth media (you can see all their resources here)! The US seems to be far more on the ball with resources etc for braces wearers.

braces-cookbook-1-lg

On another less gross note, my teeth have been aching a lot today. I think that means they’ve stopped fighting and are allowing themselves to be moved! Come on teeth – you can do it!!

Day 2 – Dos and Don’ts

Hi folks!

Well, I’m nearly at 24 hours with braces and the lower ones are pretty much settled. If I’d just had those I’d be waxing lyrical about how quickly I’ve become accustomed etc. However, the top ones are…shall we say, a little LESS settled. I’m still feeling like I’m lifting my lip over aforementioned braces every time I open and close my mouth but, I’ve been assured that this will feel better in time. Roll on time!

SO – it transpires that they’re a bit of a bitch to upkeep – eating adventures aside. The wire is fragile and food conspires against you too. Cleaning is imperative but – thankfully – I like a bit of a routine so I’m sort of enjoying that part of it. For those newbies with braces here are the golden rules of cleaning:

  • Make sure you brush your teeth after every meal – including lunchtime (I’m planning on making up a ‘mini-kit’ to take to work with me). As you shouldn’t be snacking in between meals this means your teeth will always be clean! Splendid
  • Don’t use Sensodyne Pronamel or GC Tooth Mousse (I have no idea why not but I’m not going to argue with the specialists!)
  • Angle your brush down then up (rather than head on) so your brushing the brackets as well as your teeth
  • Use TePe brushes (the yellow one is the best) for brushing between the brackets and cleaning the wire
  • Use a good flouride mouthwash in between times rather than after brushing (again, not sure of the rationale behind this but there you go)

A couple of other things to bear in mind (non-cleaning based):

  • Check your brace every day and if anything is loose, missing or broken phone your orthondontist straight away
  • Avoid chewing pens, pencils and fingernails – this may be a good time to break some of those lingering childhood habits!
  • Use dental wax on any ‘sticky out bits’ on your braces which are rubbing
  • Use pain relief if your teeth or surrounding areas are sore

Many thanks to Lincoln Orthodontics for the basis of the advice above.