Getting Use To My Braces

I now have just the upper “lingual” braces on.  Because they are on the inside of my upper teeth, when I bite down, my lower front teeth which are behind my upper front teeth, are now biting on these new braces.

Dr C Lun WangThis is very common for lingual braces wearers.  This will occur with all patients unless their front teeth do not touch at all when they bite down.  In some ways, this contact of the lower front teeth with the upper front braces prevents the patient from closing all the way down in the back, creating an open bite in the back.  When this happens, the back teeth will react and come together slowly by “passive eruption”.  This side effect may be beneficial in cases where the patient presents with a deep bite; the contact of lower front teeth with the upper front braces actually will speed up the correction of the deep bite.

I will tell patients to be careful when they first get their Lingual Braces because they are not used to having the braces there when they bite down, and when eating, they may bite down too hard or too fast, and end up breaking the braces off.  This is exactly what I did during the first week I had the upper lingual braces on.  I constantly bit down too fast and hard, resulting in breaking 3 braces off in the first 3 days!  Something I am always on my patients about.  I found that I had to slow down on my chewing and be very careful and deliberate in my jaw movement to not hit the braces too hard.

I did notice that there were changes to my teeth and my bite that were occurring quite rapidly.  My back teeth were quite far apart when I first got my braces on, however, 2 weeks later the back teeth were already coming together by passive eruption.

I had 2 major hurdles that I had to get over in the first 2 weeks.  The first had to do with hygiene.  After each meal or snack, I had to clean between my braces in Vancouver because of all the food that would get stuck in my braces.  Any sticky or fibrous food would wrap itself around the brackets when I chewed.

Of course, this is something I had expected, but I did not know how much it would bother me to have that food stuck to my braces.  I became obsessive in cleaning my braces and started to carry around a special toothpick that I could use to get between the wires and braces.

2099Composite-Progress 1

The second problem I was having was the irritation to my tongue by the constant rubbing of the sides of my tongue against the wire.  Because the first wire that was put in was very thin and flexible, my tongue could not avoid it when I was eating, swallowing, or talking.

I found it most irritating when I talked.  The sides of my tongue rubbed against the back braces and created cuts on my tongue.  As you know, the tongue is a very sensitive organ, and any cuts on the tongue are very painful.  The good thing is that any skin in your mouth heals very quickly, and any cuts on the lips or tongue will heal very fast, within a couple of days.

It still took over 2 weeks for my tongue to get used to rubbing against the braces.

The journey continues!


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