Life with braces: how can I maximize the efficiency of my orthodontic treatment?

Once you have chosen to improve your smile with the help of Dr. Wu and the team at Wu Orthodontics, you will want to do all you can to ensure that your treatment is as effective as possible.

That’s why we have prepared the following information to help you maintain hygiene, minimize discomfort and ensure your treatment brings you those accelerated results.

Maintaining your oral hygiene

with braces by Wu Orthodontics

Keeping your teeth clean is even more important when you have braces. Braces need healthy teeth and gums to maximize how well they work, so it’s crucial to keep up with brushing and flossing. If gum disease is a common problem for you, ensure you see a periodontist regularly during treatment.

All of our orthodontic solutions are designed to make maintaining your oral health simple, so they won’t interfere with your toothbrush or flossing methods. Our video will help you understand proper care of your braces.

Maintaining your oral hygiene

Important information about

your diet - eating with braces

At the outset of your treatment, you might feel a little worried about eating. This is normal and it’s important to be careful for the first few days.

Soft foods are best in this initial period. Crusty bread, tough meat and raw vegetables are not advised to begin with, though they’re fine once you’re a few days post-treatment.

Protecting your orthodontic appliances should always be in the forefront of your mind during treatment. Damaged braces, caused by biting on hard surfaces like pens or fingernails will cause treatment to be delayed. If you play sports, let us know so we can help you avoid problems.

Foods to avoid:

  • Chewy and sticky foods like hard rolls, bagels, licorice and gum
  • Crunchy and hard foods like popcorn, ice, nuts and candy
  • Foods that require biting into like corn on the cob and apples.
Important information about

Alleviating discomfort -

soreness, tooth loosening and repairs

Initial discomfort is usually minimal. Some patients experience mild headaches or discomfort within the soft tissues of their mouth, but this is uncommon. The Pitts 21 and Brius braces systems are specially designed to minimize discomfort. Clear aligners are unlikely to irritate your lips or mouth. If you do experience pain, take whichever pain relief you would usually take for a headache.

Patients who find they are sensitive to biting pressures will find this eases within 3-5 days of treatment. Loosening of teeth is to be expected, as this is what will allow the teeth to move into their new, straighter position. Once they’re in the right place, the teeth will firm up again.

Discover our treatment options

Alleviating discomfort -

Loose wires and repairs

Sometimes patients will notice a loose wire - if this happens then use a blunt instrument, such as the eraser end of a pencil or Q tip - to move the wire under the arch. This will temporarily move it out of the way. Wax or wet cotton can reduce any annoyance. Get in contact with us straight away if this happens.

More emergency care help

Loose wires and repairs

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We offer two consultation options for patients - a full orthodontic assessment in our Palo Alto practice or a complimentary virtual assessment.


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