Braces 101: Your Journey to a Stunning Smile

No doubt, getting braces on is a big deal and a major milestone. But what does the journey towards that new, confidence-boosting smile look like? Is life with braces a lot different from life before them? How long do braces take? And is caring for braces hard?

Here, your Wellington and Palm Beach Gardens orthodontist, Dr. Jonathan Murray, answers these big questions by walking you through braces treatment step-by-step — from your first complimentary consultation to post-braces care.

1.The No-Pressure First Chat With Dr. Murray

At Murray Orthodontics, your orthodontic journey starts with a no-pressure, free consultation to get to know Dr. Murray and our team, and help you make the most informed decision possible. A first visit may include digital images of your teeth, a chat about your oral and medical history, and your hopes for a new smile. 

After examining your teeth and diagnostic records, Dr. Murray will go over your best options and create a custom treatment plan. We’ll also talk about costs and your financial options so you can move forward with your braces treatment in full confidence and clarity. Our interest-free payment plans help to make treatment affordable for all budgets.

2. Getting Your Braces On – The Start of A Stunning Smile

Getting your braces on is an exciting event! Your Palm Beach Gardens orthodontist will clean your teeth, position the brackets, and place the wire. The appointment for getting your braces on is pretty quick, typically taking between 1-1.5 hours.

And how long do braces take to straighten a smile? It’s different for everyone, but, on average, it takes about two years. However, some quicker cases can be finished in as little as six months.

3. Your First Week with Braces – A New Normal

Typically, the two biggest things our patients experience during the first week of braces are some oral discomfort and figuring out which foods work with braces. We suggest soft foods for your first week with braces: think soups, yogurts, smoothies, mashed potatoes, and our personal favorite — ice cream! Over-the-counter pain relievers such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen can help, too. 

4. The Adjustment Waves – Guiding Your Teeth

Patients in braces are typically seen every 6-8 weeks for adjustments. Dr. Murray will adjust the wires and check that your progress is on track. Now, is this part of braces treatment uncomfortable? In short, yes, getting your braces adjusted can feel uncomfortable for a day or two. But keep in mind that each adjustment is a step closer to your smile goals. 

Between adjustments, you’ll need to wear your rubber bands if this is part of your treatment plan. These elastics help align your upper and lower jaws into a beautiful and healthy bite.

5.Oral Hygiene – Caring for Your Braces and Teeth

When it comes to life with braces, excellent brushing and flossing is the key to healthy gums and teeth; brackets and wires result in extra nooks and crannies where food debris and plaque can hide. Brush for two minutes at least twice a day and floss daily. Or better yet, brush and floss after every meal. And consider an electric toothbrush, water flosser, or mouthwash for even more cleaning power.

6. Eating Habits – Do’s and Don’ts

After the first week with braces, branch back out with your food choices — just avoid hard, crunchy, and sticky foods that could damage your braces or get stuck in them. When in doubt, cut food into small, bite-sized pieces and chew with your back teeth.

7. Getting Your Braces Removed – The Big Reveal

Getting your braces off with your Palm Beach Gardens and Wellington, FL, orthodontist is quick and less uncomfortable than getting your braces on. And when you see your straight, stunning teeth for the first time, it’s cause for celebration! 

8. A Retainer After Braces – Locking In That Smile

Post-braces, you’ll get a retainer to keep your teeth in place. Wearing a retainer after braces as prescribed by your orthodontist, is crucial for securing your teeth into their new spots and preventing future shifting. 

A Confident Smile Journey With Your Palm Beach County Orthodontist

Feeling confident both during braces treatment and afterwards goes without saying. At Murray Orthodontics, it’s what we want for our patients and why we provide custom treatment plans and a personal, transparent approach. 

Ready to start your smile transformation with a board-certified Palm Beach County orthodontist? Contact us today for your complimentary initial appointment for modern metal or clear braces at our Palm Beach Gardens or Wellington, FL, office.