It’s that time of year again. Summer’s over and school is back in session. But what if new classes, new teachers and new friends aren’t the only things that are different at school this year? What if your child got braces over the summer and has to go back to school with them still on? While this might not sound thrilling for your child, we do have some helpful tips to get them through the transition.
Bring a Braces Care Kit
Keeping braces and teeth clean is top priority, so you want to make sure that your child has a braces care kit to keep their mouth healthy. A toothbrush and toothpaste should definitely be in the kit. Your child should brush their teeth after lunch or any snack to remove residual crumbs and food from their teeth. Floss, threaders and flossing picks are also important to include in your child’s pack. Flossing gets out plaque and extra food stuck in between teeth and lowers the chance of cavities developing.
Your orthodontist should have told you what you should and should not eat with braces, but it’s important to stay vigilant with what your kids are eating. To make it easy at school, pack your child a lunch so they’re guaranteed to have braces-approved food. Relying solely on the cafeteria lunch options could limit what your child can to eat and might endanger their braces.
Stay away from crunchy and hard foods like raw carrots, apples, chips and nuts as they can break or damage the brackets. Chewing ice is also not advised. Sticky snacks like taffy, caramel and gum should be avoided as they can get stuck to the brackets and wires and tear them apart.
Bite-sized foods are highly suggested to limit the amount of chewing and tearing. If your child has a sandwich for lunch, make sure it’s cut into smaller pieces so the bread doesn’t get stuck under their brackets.
Drink Plenty of Water
Bringing a water bottle to school is such a smart and easy way to not only stay hydrated but also keep braces clean throughout the day. Drinking plenty of water can rinse food from the brackets and wires. Kids should use water instead of sodas and sugary drinks to wash out the food from their mouths. Soda can stain teeth and leaves behind residue that can cause cavities.
Protect Your Mouth During Sports
Gym class and extracurricular sports are a huge part of being in school and staying active. But any physical activity can be especially dangerous for kids with braces. It’s important for children to wear a mouth guard to protect their teeth and braces from any impact or injury they might sustain. It’s always better to be safe than sorry. Buying a larger one that fits around braces would be best if you already have one that is too small.
Don’t Be Self-Conscious
A lot of kids are nervous about being teased or bullied because of their braces. Make sure they know that they are not alone. There are plenty of other kids who are wearing braces and going through the same orthodontic treatments as them. If they are concerned about fitting in or worried about being different, let them know that having braces is only temporary. It’s a necessary treatment for some and it will drastically improve their life after they’re finished.
Going back to school is an exciting time for many kids and having braces shouldn’t worry or upset them. Many people go through school with braces and are able to keep their teeth clean and healthy. If you have any questions or concerns you can always call us at (843) 4-BRACES for more information and suggestions.