What to expect after insertion of a removable appliance?
How are removable appliance worn?
Your orthodontist will teach you how to insert the appliance and remove it. For the treatment to be effective, you will need to wear the appliance all the time (including sleep and eating). However, you have to remove them during toothbrushing and contact sports.
Because they are mostly removable, patient compliance in wearing and caring for them is essential to ensure treatment progress and success.
How long do I need to wear it?
Treatment duration usually varies between 3 to 6 months depending on the severity of the bite discrepancy and patient compliance.
There will be some discomfort initially. This varies between individuals.
Most patients experience more saliva temporarily, usually for a few days.
Speech is commonly affected but this is also temporary and your speech will return to normal after a few days of continuous wear.
You may get oral ulcers on the insides of your lips, cheeks and tongue that are rubbing against parts of the appliance. These ulcers take about a week to heal. Please let your orthodontist know if there are any problems with the appliance. Adjustments can be made to the appliance.
You can buy over-the-counter ulcer medication and gels to apply on the ulcer to speed up the healing and for pain relief.
You will have some difficulties chewing with the removable appliance, particularly if the purpose of the appliance is to ‘disclude’ (open up) your bite, or prevent you from chewing of your lower braces in some instances (if you have lower braces), or prevent trauma to your lower teeth.
It is difficult to chew as well as you did previously because you are now biting on the smooth plastic of the appliance instead, or only on some teeth. It will take a while for you to adapt to the new chewing pattern.
In the meantime, start on a softer diet and chew slowly. You may want to cut up your foods into smaller pieces. Give yourself more time for your meals.
As your treatment progresses, your orthodontist will let you know when you need not wear it anymore.