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The 7 Must Know Techniques To Braces Pain Relief

in Pain Relief

When most people think about having braces, the first thing they imagine is the immense pain associated with it. Some people even think that they will have to use a straw to take their meals every day! Well while this might be possible in cartoons and movies, it almost always never happens in real life. You see, the act of getting braces itself is not painful, so get that image out of your head!

Once braces are fitted, people usually experience discomfort for the first few days because the teeth and mouth have not gotten used to having them. The discomfort usually goes away after a few days or at most one week.

People having braces do sometimes have pain or discomfort in their mouths but this is mainly due to the sores and discomfort caused by the braces rubbing against the cheeks, teeth and lips. When this happens, there are various quick ways to make sure the discomfort goes away:

braces pain relief

1. Taking Pain Relief Medication

This is the most obvious solution. Taking pain killers such as ibuprofen and acetaminophen can help to relieve pain in the jaws and gums. This deep pain is normally brought about by the gradual shifting of one’s teeth as they get used to the new braces.
Pain relievers are not the best solution however as they can be addictive. They are still recommendable if your doctor prescribes adequate amounts for a short period of time.

2. Eating Cold or Frozen Treats

Yes, you heard me right, eat as much cold treats as you like! Now, I’m pretty sure the kids love hearing this, so let me explain to the worried grownups how this actually works; frozen treats help to numb the teeth and any area in the mouth and cheeks where there might be sores. This acts as a quick relief and even helps treat swollen gums.

3. Using the Orthodontist Wax

tooth and braces painMost orthodontists give their patients a special wax after they fit them with braces. Applying this wax to the teeth, braces and gums greatly helps to reduce discomfort caused by the braces.

So, how does this magic wax work?

Well, when the braces are fitted, you might feel a protruding arch wire that is scratching the inner part of your mouth. The wax helps to reduce the friction between the brace, teeth and gums.  This helps you to be able to use your mouth without much discomfort.

4. Rising with Warm Salt Water

The other quick pain remedy is to use rinse with simple warm salt water. Salt has natural curing properties so next time you are going to have your braces adjusted, just gurgle some salt water. Salt water also helps to heal the sores, cuts and ulceration in your inner mouth and gums. So whenever you feel any discomfort, just rinse your mouth with salt water to hasten the healing process.

5. Massaging Your Gums

This is another effective brace pain remedy and the best thing about it is that you don’t even have to go to a masseuse to get it done! Just use one of your fingers to gently rub around your gums. For better results, stroke the gums with a block of ice before massaging them. This will help to relax swollen gums.

6. Practicing Better Dental Hygiene

Believe it or not, most pain experienced by people having braces is caused by poor dental hygiene! As a reminder to all brace wearers: when you have braces, cleaning your teeth alone just isn’t enough; you also have to thoroughly clean your braces!

You see, braces have rough edges that hide dental plaque. With time, the braces accumulate enough plaque that can cause dental conditions such as dental caries. So, to avoid this, always remember to brush your teeth after every meal, clean your braces well, floss regularly and use mouthwash.

7. Chewing More

That’s right chew a little bit more. Chewing helps to exercise your mouth increasing the blood flow to supporting structures in around the teeth. This in turn helps to heal the sores and lesions in your mouth reducing the associated discomfort. Care should however be taken to ensure brace wearers only chew soft materials that will not cause decay to the teeth such as sugar-free gum or Twizzlers.


{ 16 comments… add one }

  • These are all great ways to help braces-wearers feel better. The cold food not only helps sore gums feel better, it also slows down the movement of high-tech arch-wires, made from NASA-developed metal alloys that actually respond to the warmth of your mouth. No wonder a cold smoothie makes braces-wearers happy!

    • Leslie

      Doesn’t that mean that you have reduced or eliminated the effectiveness of the braces?

      • admin

        Hi, Leslie!
        These recommendations mostly natural and don’t interfere the braces (in case they’re properly installed of course) and don’t eliminate/reduce their effectiveness. Some other technics like pain relief medications or use of orthodontic wax it’s better to consult your orthodontist about.

  • I tried all 7 of theses but nothing worked

    • Hi, Diana!
      I’m so sorry to hear that. I will think of more techniques to braces pain relief and post them here. Meantime you can drink more liquids like soups and warm milk as it will enhance your blood circulation. If your braces have hooks, make sure you wear braces bands so that hooks will not dig into the skin. Use a soft thoothbrushes and toothpaste for sensitive teeth, brush gently. Rinse your mouth with hydrogen peroxide for 2-3 times a day and every day untill you’ll feel better. Mix one part of hydrogen peroxide and one part of water and swish in your mouth for one minute. Try special teething rings, cool them in freezer and after that chew on them gently. Check braces with your orthodontist again to make sure that the fitment of the braces is correct. I hope it helps. Thanks.

  • Harry Malee

    thanks! helped a lot!

  • Xmdxx

    I just had my braces and they really hurt tell me how to stop the pain
    I ate ice and I ate Tylenol nothing happened

    • Hi!
      Sorry for the late reply! Hope you feeling better by now. Did you try all the other techniques I listed? Please share what helped you relieve the pain at the end.

  • Macy hare

    None worked and the pain is unbearable

    • Hi, Macy Hare!

      Take a look on additional techniques at the comment section above that I wrote as an answer to Diana. If those will not help, try to place a heating pad on the jaw. Alternatively, you can place a warm washcloth. Do this several times a day. If all these won’t help, visit your orthodontist again. Ask your orthodontist to losen your braces as much as possible, maybe they’re too tight. If you feel that the cause of your pain can be the short ends of wires on the braces (in case you have this type of braces) that will protrude and rub against the inside of your cheek, ask your orthodontist to snip the ends off of these wires. Ask for prescription strength medication like stronger dose of ibuprofen or other stronger medications. Orthodontst can reccommend you a bite wafer to reduce a pain too. You bite on it for a few minutes several times every hour and that technique helps generate blood circulation in your gums, which can ease pain. As general some pain is expected when braces are first put on your teeth, but in your case when pain is unbearable as you said and all the techniques above didn’t help, I’d again advice you to visit your orthodontist. Please share with us what recommendation he/she gave you and if it helped.


  • olivia

    Which one works the best!!! i am dying here!!!!

    • Hello, Olivia!

      This is not something clearly defined. Some methods can help to somebody while the same methods will not help to somebody else. It’s trial and error. Start from the simplest and natural methods first. If nothing helps, visit your orthodontist again. Braces can be very uncomfortable and painful especially in the first few days. Small tip – avoid hard foods or anything that requires a lot of chewing, as it will be a very painful meal. Mash up all your food, using a food masher or just a fork. Hope it helps.


  • Walter Johnson

    Braces make my jaws ache all the time, I read that taking tylenol is a bit better than taking advil, but I still feel a dull pain. The most relief for me is from warmth, the easiest way is heating a bag of rice in the microwave and holding it against the jaw for relief. Sinking up to your jaws in a hot bathtub works too. My dentist said not to chew any kind of gum because it’ll stick into your braces.

  • rebecca

    I have haf braces for a couple of days now and there is constant pain and whatever i do nothing seems to work i have tryed everything and it id preventing me from sleeping.

    • Hello, Rebecca!
      I’m so sorry to hear that! Usually the pain is caused from the pressure of the braces on the teeth and usually it’s only a problem for one or two weeks after the treatment starts. Take heart, it will pass! Did you try over the counter medications like Advil or Tylenol? It may help. You can try various braces pain relief products like these here: http://www.dentakit.com/brhutr.html. But if you said you tried all the possible things and pain still persists for couple of days now, maybe it’s better to visit your orthodontist again and make a needed adjustments. Let your orthodontist see if there are no problems and if the braces can be loosened slightly. Please let us know how are you feeling now and what helped you to reduce your pain. Thank you!

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