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Do Braces Hurt?


Do Braces Hurt?

Do Braces Hurt?


Recently, I've gotten quite a few questions about whether or not braces hurt.  A lot of the questions are from young people who will be getting braces very soon and are getting kind of nervous about whether or not the braces will hurt when they get them put on.

To answer the question of whether or not braces hurt, I'm going to divide it into four sections below:

1 – Do braces hurt when they get put on?

2 – Do braces hurt after they've been on for a while?

3 – Do braces hurt after they get tightened?

4 – Do braces hurt when you get them taken off?

Do Braces Hurt When They Are Put On?

When the orthodontist puts your braces on, he or she will usually glue metal brackets to the front of  your teeth and might even put metal bands around some of the back teeth.

After that, your orthodontist will usually put a wire that runs through all of the brackets.  The wire is what gradually applies forces on your teeth that causes them to move.

Having braces put on usually doesn't hurt at all.

However, a few hours after the appointment, your teeth will most likely begin to hurt a little bit.  The pain isn't a sharp pain, it's more like a dull pain.

The best example I can give is to have you press hard on your fingernail.  It may not really hurt, it might just pinch a little.  Now imagine this same pinching feeling going on in your mouth.  This is similar to the feeling that I had when I had my braces on.

Keep in mind that we all experience pain in different ways.  For some people, getting braces may not really hurt at all, and for others it can be rather painful.

Do Braces Hurt After They've Been on for a While?

The reason braces hurt when you have them put on is because they are applying force on your teeth that makes your teeth move.  After a few days, the pain usually goes away as your teeth have already begun the process of moving and the tension in the wire has gone down.

After I'd had my braces on for a while, my teeth felt fine.  They felt like they did before I had braces — that is until I went to my first appointment to have them tightened!

Do Braces Hurt When You Have Them Tightened?

After you go in to have your braces adjusted, you will usually experience some more pain, although it probably won't be as bad as it was when you first had them put on.

When you go in to have your braces tightened, the orthodontist will usually evaluate how your teeth have moved and put in a new wire to keep them moving into the position that will provide you with an ideal, healthy smile.  The new wire will have some tension in it and may cause you some discomfort until your teeth have moved into their new position.  This discomfort generally is most painful in the initial 24 hours after they are tightened but should resolve within two to three days.  After that, your teeth should feel great until you go in for your next appointment.

Do Braces Hurt When You Have Them Taken Off?

Having your braces removed is usually the highlight of the whole experience for many teenagers!  When you have your braces removed, the orthodontist takes out the wire and removes the brackets from your teeth.  I helped one of the orthodontic residents remove a teenager's braces not too long ago and the brackets just popped right off.  She was nervously wondering if it would be painful to have them removed.  After the appointment she was relieved to realize that it really didn't hurt at all!

After the brackets are removed, the orthodontist will make sure that all of the glue has been removed that was holding the brackets off and may choose to polish your teeth.

Getting your braces off shouldn't hurt at all!


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