At Tooth Fairy Pediatric Dental in Reno, we do everything we can to make sure your child has an amazing experience when they get their braces put on or tightened. However, it’s not unusual to experience braces pain for the first few days after you’ve visited the office.
Mouth pain from braces may be normal and temporary, but it’s still a nuisance. The jaw, gums, and teeth can all experience discomfort as the mouth adjusts to the changes that are taking place.
Don’t worry though! Braces pain will go away after a few days. But, if your child can’t cope with the pain or is distracted by it, you have several options to help. Let Tooth Fairy Pediatric Dental help you with five surefire methods to relieve mouth pain from braces.
1. Use wax
When you leave your appointment, make sure you receive orthodontic wax. This wax is made especially for your braces. If you find that your braces are making the inside of your cheek feel raw, orthodontic wax will help.
Wash your hands thoroughly, then break off a generous piece of the wax with your fingers. Let the wax sit between your fingers for a moment so that the heat of your skin warms the wax a bit. This will make the wax more pliable. Then, gently press the wax against the metal that is rubbing against the cheek.
If you’re having difficulty getting the wax to stick to your braces, make sure your braces are as dry as possible. Once you get the wax affixed properly, you should feel relief from braces pain against the cheek. Over time, you will adjust to the braces and you won’t need the wax anymore.
2. Use salt water
If you feel general pain and achiness from getting braces or from having them tightened, then a salt water rinse is a great way to find some solace. Not only will the warm water bring some temporary relief to the mouth, the salt will also help keep harmful bacteria at bay. This is especially important if you have open sores in your mouth caused by your braces. The saltwater rinse will aid in the healing of those sores.
Simply heat water using your microwave or kettle. Once your pour the water out into a cup, ensure that the water isn’t dangerously hot. Remember, you don’t need the water to be boiling hot, just warm enough to bring comfort and to dissolve the salt. Next, add your salt to the water. Don’t be heavy handed with it though, as only a few pinches are necessary.
Once the water is ready, take the solution and swish it in your mouth. Remember, you’re not gargling as if you have a sore throat. You want to swish the solution in the front of your mouth with your cheeks. After a 30 seconds or so, spit the water into the sink. Repeat this several times a day. You should feel relief from your braces pain within a few days.
3. Use an ice cube
Sometimes, sucking on an ice cube can soothe mouth pain from braces. There are a couple key things to keep in mind with this method, however.
First, make sure the ice cube is not too large. Not only could a large ice cube pose a choking hazard to a child, it can also become uncomfortable if sucked on for too long. Second, make sure that your child will not chew on the ice. This is imperative, as chewing on ice is one of the most harmful things someone can do to braces. Remind your child that chewing on ice can damage their braces, causing them to have to return to the office to have them fixed. Additionally, chewing on ice will not relieve braces pain. In fact, it will make it worse.
The best way to utilize the ice method is to give your child a few smaller ice chips and then ask them to suck on them until they are completely melted. Crushed ice works best for this if you can find it. Allow your child to do this as many times as they like, and soon their pain will dissipate.
4. Use a medicated gel
There are several topical ointments and gels on the market that are made to relieve pain like a toothache. These medicines are also great to use for braces pain as well. Your drugstore should have several options, but you can also ask our office for a recommendation as well.
Make sure you read the instructions carefully before administering the gel. There often is a limit of how often you can use it each day. Once applied, the mouth pain from braces should be numbed fairly quickly. Side effects are rare, but can often include itching or rash, so keep an eye on the affected area the first time you apply it.
5. Use a painkiller
Is your child having a difficult time falling asleep? The best way to help them (and you!) get a good night rest is to use a painkiller like ibuprofen or acetaminophen (Tylenol). This is usually the longest lasting way to alleviate braces pain, but should be used sparingly.
Schedule Your Consultation Today
If your child needs braces, there’s no place better to go in the greater Reno area than Tooth Fairy Pediatric Dental. You can submit an online appointment request, and we’ll get in contact with you within the day. Or if you prefer, you can contact us directly by phone and we’ll answer all of your questions.