Do Braces Hurt?

One of the most common and basic questions that I sincerely get asked by potential patients is “Do braces hurt?” The answer is… No!  Here is what is like to get braces.

How Braces Are Attached

Retractors, which are used to hold the tongue and cheeks out of the way.  The nexct step is the process of conditioning, rinsing, drying, and sealing a tooth is completely painless. Likewise, there is no pain when the orthodontist places a bracket or when the technician cures the glue with a special blue LED light.

Seriously, having brackets glued to your teeth is 100% painless. The next two steps are also painless. The first is placing your initial wire into the slots on the brackets and the second is securing the wire using coloured Modules that hold everything together.  You get to choose the colour of modules you would like.  If you have a special event coming up you can choose a colour that might be of significance. The choice is yours.

How Do Braces Work?

Braces work by reducing  blood flow around the roots of the teeth. This occurs when the force placed on the crown of the tooth pushes or pulls the tooth slightly and cuts off blood flow to the tissues on one side of that tooth.

In so doing, there is a slow build-up of lactic acid which may create soreness.  Lactic acid is the same thing that makes your muscles sore when you perform strenuous exercise or overexert yourself. With braces, this lactic acid build up starts to make you feel sore about 3 to 4 hours after your braces are “tightened”. At Dr Vaughan’s  surgery you are given chewing gum to start chewing as soon as your braces are fitted.  Chewing gum moves the teeth while chewing and allows small amounts of blood to flow around the roots which reduces soreness.

Adapting to Braces

Over the course of the next 24 to 48 hours, your body adapts to the new position of the tooth by dissolving bone in the area where there is pressure. This remodelling of the bone relieves the pressure, makes you feel better, and results in the tooth moving to a different position.

Depending upon how crooked your teeth are or how much the wire  designed to move the teeth after your adjustment, the process may repeat itself and soreness may continue. Once the force is all used up, the tooth will relax in its new position and your discomfort will subside. After each adjustment while the teeth are  being moved, there maybe some discomfort.

Tolerance to this discomfort varies from patient to patient. Most patients tell me they can hardly feel anything, while others will report discomfort. Those who do experience discomfort can get through the initial 48 hours using common over-the-counter analgesics. Chewing sugarless gum also reduces discomfort by “massaging” the teeth.

Wearing Elastics

The final part of braces treatment involves wearing elastics, which are used to adjust bite and jaw position. These are connected to the brackets with hooks, often connecting the top tooth bracket with the bottom tooth bracket to help adjust the position of the teeth in the mouth and the position of the jaw.

Elastics help to ensure teeth will line up properly. They are removed to eat and clean teeth and are typically replaced on a daily basis.


Perhaps the happiest day of treatment for orthodontic patients is the day the braces come off. Patients are happy. Parents are happy. Doctors are happy! But no matter what treatment was provided or how perfectly the teeth are aligned, it’s just the beginning of treatment process.

There is a need to retain (or hold) the teeth in the best position possible. Lifetime retention should not come as a surprise to anyone as there’s nothing on the human body that doesn’t change with over time. Your teeth are no different. You have two types of aligners Fixed or Removable.  The orthodontist will talk to you about the choice of aligners so you to can make the decision based on your needs.

Getting Braces in Newcastle

If you would like more information or require braces treatment in Newcastle for you or your family, get in touch with our friendly team for a totally free consultation. We can detail the treatment process and address any questions or concerns you may have so we can offer the best possible orthodontic treatment.

Call 02 4956 2020 or schedule an appointment online.

Request a consultation today

Schedule an appointment and discuss your treatment options at a time that works for you

  • Your Information

  • Appointment Details

  • Date Format: DD slash MM slash YYYY
  • Date Format: DD slash MM slash YYYY
  • Comments

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.