Braces can help patients achieve straighter smiles, but when treatment falls during a special event such as prom, or your wedding, you might wonder if they are removable even just for a few days. Dr. Aly Kanani is here to explain.
Can Braces Be Removed For Special Occasions
When you get braces, you are signing up for many months or years of wearing an appliance. While it’s possible to get braces removed for special occasions, your orthodontist will usually recommend leaving them on.
The process of temporarily removing braces not only involves additional costs and time, but your orthodontist will also usually only remove the brackets and wires on the upper front teeth.
Our orthodontists are sympathetic to those patients who were hoping to accelerate treatment and have their braces off in time for a big day, such as a wedding or a birthday, but it’s our duty to provide the best possible treatment and help our patients get the most out of the experience. Otherwise, your entire treatment may be jeopardized.
What Happens If Your Braces Come Off Early
Braces can be removed early by your orthodontist if you absolutely insist, but there are many reasons why you shouldn't.
Incomplete treatment may leave your overall dental health and tooth alignment worse than it was before you began treatment. There’s a much higher chance of teeth relapsing into their original positioning or otherwise being improperly aligned, which can lead to new or different dental problems. And don’t forget the waste of time and money.
How To Survive Special Occasions With Braces
Do you or your child have a special event coming up that you are dreading because of braces? While it might sound tempting to ask your dental team to remove them temporarily, here are some tips to help you survive these events with minimal discomfort.
Milestone Birthday Party
It's no surprise that parties are often filled with foods that are not braces-friendly.
Crunchy rolls or crusty bread can damage brackets, popcorn and crunchy nuts can snap wires, and goody bags stuffed with chewy lollies and caramels can become trapped and lead to tooth decay. Avoiding all of those treats isn’t an easy feat.
Giving your child some background as to why they aren’t able to eat certain sticky, hard or sugary foods while wearing braces, and letting them know that this is just a temporary restriction can help greatly.
But the good news is that cookies and cake can both be eaten in moderation, and if they’re hard or chewy your child can soften them in a glass of milk. Pizzas are brace-friendly if you be careful when eating the crust, as are sausage rolls and hot dogs.
First Day Of High School
Starting high school can be a nerve-wracking experience. They’re going from a familiar environment with people they know, into a world where they have different classes, higher expectations, and need to make new friends. If your child is self-conscious about their braces, it could make this time quite challenging.
You can start by reminding your child of the benefits of braces and that it’s a temporary measure for a permanent fix, you can also do small things to help build their child’s confidence as they start at a new school. New clothes or shoes at the start of the school year can make your child feel more confident, or if your child has to wear a uniform, try offering to take them for a new haircut or to get new stationery. And chances are, they’ll get to school and see plenty of other children with braces too!
Going On A Big Date
A first date is one of the most exciting times in any young person’s life! It’s unlikely your child will be thinking about their braces on their first date, but looking after their braces should still be on their mind.
If they go out for dinner on their date, a teenager should still be thinking about the food they can and can't eat. To avoid any embarrassment, an easy trick to remove food from braces is to swill water in the mouth discretely – or they could always carry a small bottle of mouthwash to take to the bathroom and quickly give their mouth a rinse.
If your partner cares about you, they won't be concerned about you wearing braces for a few months or years and will support you throughout your orthodontic journey.
Sports day is always a fun event, as much for the parents watching as the kids taking part! In general, braces won’t stop anyone from playing the sports they love, so your kid should still be able to participate in all of their favourite sports day events. However, if they are playing contact sports, it’s recommended that they wear a mouthguard to protect against any possible dental injuries. A mouthguard will mean your child can play sports confidently, and not worry about damaging their mouth or braces when they go for gold!
There are a number of different mouthguard options for kids and teens wearing braces or other orthodontic devices. Speak to your orthodontist to find out which option is best suited for your child’s circumstances.