The most common question we hear from patients is will braces hurt? Rest assured that the process of putting the braces onto your teeth does not hurt – we simply glue to brackets to the teeth. However, it is normal to experience some discomfort and pressure on the teeth about 4 hours after the wires have been placed as the teeth begin to move. This mild discomfort generally lasts less than a week and you can take regular analgesics to relieve any pain. To further minimise any discomfort, we also recommend that you eat soft foods such as pasta, rice and soup as you are getting used to the braces. After the braces have been put on, you may also find it harder to talk and that you salivate more. This is all normal and everything will improve over the next few days as you practice talking with the braces on. Sometimes the braces can rub against the inside of your lips and cheeks and cause irritation or sore sports. To prevent this, you can apply orthodontic wax over the brackets. If you have any mouth ulcers, it is useful to rinse with warm salt-water to help them heal. An important thing to remember with braces is that any discomfort that you experience is only temporary and can be easily managed. Most importantly, you can always contact the clinic if you are unsure of anything or need any further support. Written by Sher Fong.
Meet Elaine – our clinical coordinator at Sable and Pepicelli Orthodontists. ELAINE How long have you been working at Sable and Pepicelli Orthodontists? I started working at Sable and Pepicelli Orthodontists in 2014. What is your role at Sable and Pepicelli Orthodontists? Clinical Coordinator Have you ever had braces? Yes I had braces twice, the first time round was in Germany when I was 13 years old however I stopped wearing my retainers after four years and my teeth moved. I then decided to get braces again at Sable and Pepicelli Orthodontists. I will never stop wearing my retainers. Where did you grow up? I was born and raised in a small village of just 10,000 people in Germany called Bad Ems. What is your background? My mother is from Malaysia and my father is from Hong Kong. My parents moved to Germany for work. I moved to Australia in 2008 after completing my high school education in Germany. Do you speak any other languages? My first language is German. I am also fluent in English, Cantonese and Mandarin. I am currently taking Japanese language classes and plan to learn French in the future. What is most rewarding about your job as a clinic coordinator at Sable and Pepicelli Orthodontists? I like seeing the practice run smoothly for the doctors and patients. Where is your favourite place to visit and why? I love to visit Germany to see my family and friends. I also love to visit Malaysia for the great food and shopping. What are hobbies? I enjoy taking my Rottweiler dog Stark to the dog park and beach. I also love travelling and eating different cuisines. What is your favourite restaurant? Tetsujin Sushi Train – Melbourne Emporium Written by Stacey Ottaway.
Orthodontic Emergencies The large majority of our patients make it through treatment with only minor inconveniences. Every now and again though, something can go awry and cause irritation or issue. Here is Yvette’s guide to navigating orthodontic issues and emergencies: Lip and cheek irritation Initially, certain parts of the braces or orthodontic appliances may cause irritation to the lips and cheeks causing ulcers. This will subside as the body becomes used to the braces after a week or two. This can be easily addressed by applying wax to the appliance causing irritation. In conjunction with warm salty mouth rinses the area should heal within a week. Tooth sensitivity Patients will experience a continuous light pressure during treatment. It is possible for some teeth to become sensitive for a couple of days following a visit. This is normal. This will usually subside within 3-4 days and any pain can be managed with regular analgesics. Broken and loose appliances Brackets, wires and bands may become loose during treatment. If this occurs, please contact us immediately and we will organise to see you as soon as possible. However, if something happens to occur on a weekend, you can attempt to gently remove anything that is causing direct discomfort and we will endeavour to see you as soon as possible. With all that said, prevention is the best cure so avoid hard or sticky foods to minimize breakages during treatment. Long wire or shifted wire As the teeth move around and align during the initial phase of treatment it is not uncommon for the excess wire to protrude from the back teeth. This can also occur later in treatment if we are closing spaces. Depending on the amount of wire, this feeling can range from unnoticeable to quite irritating. Orthodontic wax can be used as a temporary measure, but we will need to see you for a more permanent solution. Lost mods, power chains and separators If any of the elastic components come adrift and your appointment is within seven days, there is no urgency to make a special trip in to see us. If however your next visit is more than a week away, we would prefer you call to come in and see us. Loose Forsus spring The Forsus rod can disengage from the spring on wide opening or yawning. If you feel comfortable doing so, you can try to reengage the rod by placing it back in the spring. If that is unsuccessful or you don’t feel comfortable doing that, do not hesitate to call and book an appointment. Broken or lost retainers If you lose or break your retainer, please contact us to make an appointment as soon as possible. Teeth retain the capacity to move throughout your lifetime, so the sooner we can see you the less likely they are to have moved. Written by Yvette Ding