What To Expect With Braces

Girl With Braces On At Orthodontic Office

Wondering what you should expect with braces?

Here are our most common questions we receive regarding braces being put on! 


What type of braces am I getting?

The days of having braces tightened are over. Cooper & Misner has exclusively used tie-less brackets for nearly 25 years. With self-ligating bracket systems such as The Damon System or Pitts 21, the pressure on the teeth is reduced, allowing them to move more comfortably into their proper positions. Don’t worry, we can still decorate your high-tech braces with colors!

Another bracket option is The Damon Clear system. These braces are designed to be less noticeable on your teeth than metal braces. They are made of nearly invisible tooth-colored polycrystalline ceramic material which is less likely to discolor. Although the braces themselves are clear, the wires and hooks are still made of metal which increases the visibility. 


Does it hurt when the braces are being put on? What about the appointments after that?

Generally, it does not hurt to have your braces put on. Most patients do report mild soreness or discomfort for the first 24-48 hours as they adjust to having braces. With each appointment afterwards, there may be occasional soreness if you receive a stronger wire or need a spring. Overall, the discomfort is manageable and diminishes after the first few days. 


How long will I have to wear the braces for?

Each patient has a unique estimated treatment time. Dr. Cooper and Dr. Misner’s average treatment length for braces is 14-18 months. The treatment plan and length will be determined during your initial consultation with one of our doctors and treatment coordinators. Please note that the treatment plan length is an estimate dependent upon proper elastic care, consistent appointments as recommended, oral hygiene, few broken brackets or appliances and how your teeth move in response to the braces. If a patient goes over their estimated treatment length, it is often due to inconsistent appointments and/or poor compliance. 

We understand that 14-18 months might sound like a really long time to some people however, you will start seeing movement early on! Before you know it, your smile will be better than you imagined & it will be time for the braces to come off. If you need some inspiration, have a look at these before & after photos of previous patients!


Why do I have to wear the elastics? What happens if I don’t wear them?

The elastics (also called rubber bands) are extremely important to wear as instructed! The elastics essentially guide your top teeth and bottom teeth to fit together better. Kind of like a zipper! As stated previously, failure to follow the instructions given regarding your elastics will cause your overall length of treatment to be extended. 

You can read more about elastic wear here!


What foods am I allowed to eat with braces? What foods should I avoid having?

Don’t worry, there are plenty of great foods that you CAN still have with your braces! Check out our recommended list here.


After I get the braces off, do I have to come back for any follow up appointments?

As much as we love seeing our patients on a regular basis, you will only need to come back twice! The day after you get your braces taken off, you will come in to try on your clear retainers and receive instructions on specific wear & care for them. Six weeks after that, we will have you come back in for a quick appointment to check your bonded retainer and the fit of your clear retainers to make sure everything is still looking perfect! Otherwise, you would only need to come in if you had an issue with your clear or bonded retainer.


Have more questions?

If you have any questions regarding treatment, please reach our to our office! Our team is happy to answer any questions you have.