FAQ – Removable Braces

The Midlands Orthodontic Specialists in Birmingham

What is the reason for having a removable brace?

We use removable braces to help change your bite temporarily to allow tooth movements to work better. If a tooth is trapped behind the bite a removable brace is useful to deal with this. Sometimes we can expand your teeth to help widen them and make more space, or push teeth backwards in your mouth more effectively.

Will it affect my speech?

Removable braces are difficult to speak with at first and swallowing and eating are also difficult. With full time wear you will adapt but normally speech is distorted while the removable brace is in place.

Will it be uncomfortable?

Anything new in your mouth will feel strange but at first that is the only difference. The brace should not be painful when fitted but will start to ache as your teeth begin to move. Normal pain relief is all that is needed. Sometimes a part of the brace becomes more uncomfortable and if so you can come and see us for it to be adjusted. Eating, speaking and swallowing are more difficult at first, but all of these things improve hugely, as long as the brace is kept in your mouth full time. Full time means at night and during the day. It won’t work in your pocket…

When will I have a fixed brace?

Normally removable braces are only used for about six months or less. We may fit the lower fixed brace (if you need one) during that time. We will monitor your bite and let you know when you will be ready to have your fixed brace. In younger patients who still have baby teeth, we may have to wait until more of the adult teeth are through to be able to start the fixed brace phase of treatment.

Will it hurt to have it fitted?

No it will not hurt to have it fitted.

How much do I have to wear it?

The best thing to do is to wear it 24 hours per day.

How long will I have to wear it?

This varies from person to person but normally up to six months.

When and how often will I need appointments?

We normally see patients every few months, sometimes longer, sometimes shorter, it depends upon the type of treatment you are having and the movements that we are making.

How long will the appointments be?

For adjustments it is unusual to need longer than around 15 minutes for an appointment. Fitting braces and removing them usually takes longer but not normally longer than 30 minutes for the procedures to be carried out.

Will it affect my jaw joints?

There is no evidence that braces affect the jaw joints but do let us know if you have any pains in the joints or muscle pains which cause headaches. These are often associated with clenching and may be more of an issue during exam times or stressful periods in your life. There are some aspects of treatment that can help but normally advice is all that is necessary.

Will people be able to see it?

Most removable braces are fairly difficult to see, unless a single wire is used across the front teeth.

When will I see any changes?

Normally within a few months.

Will this do all of my treatment?

Sometimes but usually people need a fixed brace afterwards.

How long will I have to wait for them?

The laboratory normally take about four weeks to make a removable appliance. If there are special circumstances they will always try and turn them around quicker if needed.

How do I clean them?

Usually it is best to clean them after every meal. You can use toothbrush and toothpaste but there are also products such as Brace Mate and Retainer Brite that you can soak the brace in to freshen it up.

How do I clean my teeth with them in?

You don’t. It is best to remove the brace, brush your teeth, then clean your brace before putting it straight back in.

Can I play sports with them in?

With removable braces it is best to take them out for contact sports or anything requiring lots of energy.

I have a metal allergy, will this be a problem?

We would need to redesign the removable brace to avoid the use of stainless steel as this can release nickel, although it is rare for people to experience true nickel allergy in the mouth, it is normally a problem on the skin. Let us know if you have any concerns.

Back to the Removable Braces page here