How can I control pain related to having metal braces?

Dustin S. Burleson, DDS
Orthodontics & Dentofacial Orthopedics
Pain control for metal braces includes two major areas, physical pain control and pharmacological pain control. First, physical protection from sharp wires, irritating bands or braces, and orthodontic appliances that might irritate the gums, cheeks, lips and tongue.  Physical protection is typically provided through orthodontic wax or silicone products which act as a smooth barrier between the orthodontic appliances and your mouth.

Second, pharmacological pain control includes over the counter (OTC) pain relief (analgesia) through medications like Tylenol ® (acetaminophen) or Advil ® (Ibuprofen). Narcotic pain medications are occasionally used for severe amounts of pain related to tooth movement and metal braces.  Tylenol #3 with codeine or hydrocodone in combination with acetaminophen or ibuprofen might be recommended by your orthodontist, especially if your metal braces are used in conjunction with oral surgery or jaw surgery.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.