Does Getting Braces Hurt?
Do braces hurt? It’s one of the most common questions we receive at The Super Dentists, right up there with, “Do I have cavities?” and “You’re really supposed to floss every day?”
We realize many patients experience anxiety when it comes to braces. Our orthodontists here at The Super Dentists do everything necessary to ensure each patient receives the best possible care, which includes practical, proven methods to lessen any fear before, during, and after your appointment.
What’s more, we have a few non-traditional treatment methods and innovative technology to eliminate discomfort, time-consuming appointments, and other negative aspects associated with traditional braces. But more on those in a moment.
For now, let’s fully answer that question all of our orthodontic patients want to know: do braces hurt?
How Much Do Braces Hurt on a Scale of 1 -10
Everything is relative, including individual pain tolerance. Ask five different people the question, “How much do braces hurt on a scale of 1-10,” and you’re likely to get five different answers, even with similar treatment schedules.
To better answer that question, consider the three main phases of the braces lifecycle:
- Getting braces put on
- Regular appointments to adjust wires or bands
- Getting braces taken off
Let’s examine these three different processes and explore the issue of braces pain more in-depth.
Does It Hurt to Get Your Braces Put On?
For most patients, braces pain is most associated with the discomfort that comes with getting braces put on. Actually, the process itself is not painful. Getting braces installed is typically the most time-consuming part of the process, however.
It’s not actual braces pain that patients experience when they get braces put on; it’s more like a little tightness or minor discomfort. Here’s how traditional braces are installed:
- Brackets are installed to each tooth with enamel-colored dental cement.
- Wires are fed through tiny holes in the brackets.
- Once wires are laced through the brackets, they’re cut at each end.
Afterward, you can select the bands that hold your wires in place. The Super Dentists also offer cool, kid-friendly designs like WildSmiles Braces to express any personality.
During the entire process, braces pain and discomfort are limited and kept in check. We’ll ask if there is any pain, check that your tongue isn’t obstructed, and ensure there is no rubbing with your new braces. Do braces hurt? Certainly not during this part of the process!
However, a few days after your appointment (up to a week after), you may experience some slight pain or discomfort as your teeth adjust to the braces. But we have a plan with braces pain relief. With pain medication (Motrin and Advil are popular), salt water rinses, and other proven ways to lessen discomfort, any minor pain associated with getting braces on should be completely eliminated.
During regular checkups for your braces, bands and wires will need adjustment, which makes the teeth feel “tight.” This is totally normal and is to be expected.
Does It Hurt to Get Your Braces Off?
For many patients, the process of getting braces off includes mild braces pain, but it’s not that uncomfortable. The Super Dentists’ orthodontists remove the bands and wires, then gently pry off the brackets from each tooth.
Once the braces are removed, we’ll do a thorough teeth cleaning and possibly take x-rays to confirm how effective the braces were. You also may receive a retainer to wear at certain times during the day, which helps keep your teeth properly positioned while your gums and teeth heal.
Along with getting braces on, this will probably be your longest orthodontist appointment. And before you know it, your braces are off and you’re ready to show off your new smile!
Does Getting Braces Hurt: Why Do Braces Hurt?
The “pain” that accompanies braces has to do with the subtle, relentless “pulling” of your teeth to align correctly. But this pulling is done over the course of months in order to limit pain. We’ll always do everything possible to make sure you’re comfortable when you have braces on.
As you can see, braces pain is largely contained during the entire process, and The Super Dentists will help ensure that, when someone asks you in the future, “Do braces hurt,” you can answer no!
Braces Pain Relief
As we touched on previously, medication like Motrin and Advil is effective in providing braces pain relief. Salt water rinses and making sure you take care of your braces will also help keep discomfort to a minimum.
If you have any questions about braces pain or would like to discuss orthodontic treatments with the Super Dentists, feel free to visit or reach out to us. Check out our area locations, call us at 1 (855) GO SUPER, or send a text message to 1 (844) 765-1234. You can always schedule an appointment online as well!
Thanks for considering The Super Dentists for your complete orthodontic needs. Visit us today and see why 1 in 5 San Diego children is a Super Dentists kid!