Getting Back to School with Braces | Quick Tips for Parents
Summer months are the best – especially if you’re a kid! Summer break is also one of the best times to start orthodontic treatment if you’re a kid or teenager. Not only does this give you time to get used to your new braces (and learn the best tricks for staying comfortable), but it also means that you don’t have to worry about brushing and flossing around a school schedule.
However, next month marks the first time that kids are going back to school – and it’s time to check out some essential tips and tools for kids (and parents) to survive their first semester with braces.
What will set you and your child on the path to a successful and easy school year with braces? Let’s check it out!
Ensure Braces Don’t Get in the Way of School Life
Getting used to braces can be far from simple – but at Pura Vida Orthodontics, we don’t let that get in the way of making sure that you’re prepared for the treatment-plan challenges that school life will throw your way. Our three big tips focus on lunch time, cleaning up after snacks, and feeling comfortable around the clock.
Pack a Braces-Friendly Lunch
Lunchtime is one of the first things to consider when heading back to school with braces. Whether you’re out on the town, hanging at home, or enjoying a snack in between classes, it’s always important to pay attention to what foods you’re mixing with your braces.
Certain foods can be a disaster waiting to happen (we have a pretty good guide about what’s safe for wires and brackets!). Sticky, hard, or overly crunchy foods can damage traditional metal braces and ceramic braces. So, what’s the solution? Pack a braces-friendly lunch! Opt for soft foods like yogurt, applesauce, pasta, or a delicious sandwich. Fruits and veggies are always a great choice – just remember to cut crunchy things like apples or celery into small pieces to avoid any unnecessary pressure on the braces.
Always Be Prepared with Your Travel Kit
A braces travel kit can be your child’s best friend during the school day. This little pack of essentials can help them keep their braces clean and comfortable all day long. A basic travel kit should include a travel toothbrush, toothpaste, dental wax, floss, and an orthodontic mouthguard if your child plays sports or has a PE period. (We also love including a small mirror for quick checks and adjustments.)
Remember, maintaining good oral hygiene is crucial when wearing braces, so make sure your kid is equipped to fight cavities with after-lunch brushing and flossing!
Water is a super-important secret ingredient for great oral hygiene. Staying hydrated ensures that you always have enough saliva to fight dry mouth and wash away plaque, tartar, and food particles. This is especially important for your kid!
Water is also the best thing to drink when you have any kind of orthodontic treatment plan. It’s safe for clear aligners and all types of braces. Get a fun, personalized water bottle (or even a couple) so that your child can always have water on them during the day. This will also deter them from drinking more harmful beverages, like sodas.
Better Grades, Beautiful Smiles, and Happy Braces This Fall!
Heading back to school with new braces can seem daunting, but with the right preparation, it can be a breeze. At Pura Vida Orthodontics, we understand that every child’s needs are unique, and we’re here to support you and your child every step of the way.
Remember, braces aren’t forever, but a beautiful smile is. So, as you and your child embark on this exciting journey towards a healthier, happier smile, keep these tips in mind to ensure a smooth transition back to school with braces. Here’s to a great school year ahead!