Posted on March 1, 2023
According to healthcare provider Humana, over 4 million Americans wear braces. The average length of time we wear braces is 16 to 18 months. Adults average slightly longer and younger children shorter. The average age that someone wears braces begins at age 11 or 12. As recently as the 1990s, the average age was 14 to 15. Braces were usually an experience of teens entering their first or second year of high school, not their final year of elementary school. While by the end of your course of treatment, your braces will be familiar to you, the first week is full of adjustments.
Especially for children, the first week of braces can be a week of questions and a little bit of teasing by their peers. Though teen orthodontics is an almost-universal experience, kids with them, especially if early or late, can expect curiosity.
Braces add metal inside of your mouth, and metal isn’t known for being soft or yielding. Because of this, you can expect the inside of your cheeks to rub against your braces and feel irritated. Teen orthodontics and adult alike are known for this effect.
To be fair, so will you. The first week of teen orthodontics is made much easier when you’re not eating crunchy or crispy things, like hard vegetables and chips. You’ll probably want to eat more soups while you’re adjusting to your braces. If you’ve got any steak dinners scheduled, have them after your mouth is used to the metal.
The wires in your mouth for the first few days will feel like you will never get used to them. They might even wake you up in your sleep if you’re unlucky. Take heart, though – by the time your braces hit their one-week mark, you should be used to them, and they’ll dig into your cheeks less.
By the end of your first week, your friends will begin to feel like you’ve always had metal on your teeth. Braces are a part of the experience of being in high school. Enjoy the ride.
Remember that your braces have a goal – they’re part of the process of moving your teeth to where they need to be for your best smile. Give us a call today for more information on your braces!