If you are one of the many people who wear orthodontic braces, then you know that orthodontic wax can be a lifesaver. This miracle substance helps to keep your braces in place and makes them more comfortable to wear. Keep reading to learn how orthodontic wax is used and the benefits it provides.
What is orthodontic wax?
Orthodontic wax is a special type of waxy material used to seal the brackets and bands on your teeth. It helps keep food from getting stuck in between them, which can cause pain or discomfort when you’re eating meals. Orthodontic wax also makes wearing braces less noticeable because it covers any spots where metal might be showing through. So if you want an easy way to protect yourself from painful sores caused by orthodontic appliances, orthodontists recommend using ortho-wax regularly!
Ortho-Wax comes in different colors, so patients can match their brace color with the ortho-wax they choose for their particular case.
What is dental wax made of?
Orthodontic wax is a soft, sticky substance typically made up of paraffin and beeswax. The orthodontist will heat these two ingredients together to create ortho-wax. Once heated, they will then be mixed with a pigment to match the patient’s braces.
Properly Applying Wax for Braces
There are some dos and don’ts when it comes to applying orthodontic wax.
- Always wash your hands and brush your teeth before applying dental wax. This can help prevent any bacteria from affecting the area where you will use the wax.
- Take a washcloth or dry towel and pat dry the area where you will be applying the wax. The wax will need a dry surface to attach to.
- If the metal or wires from your braces irritate your mouth, find these painful areas and apply them there first.
- Grab a little bit of the wax and roll it. Keep rolling it to warm up the wax. Roll it into a small ball and avoid using a large amount of wax.
- Take your little ball of wax and place it directly on the painful area. Rub it onto the area until it creates a barrier around the metal or wires that are causing you irritation.
- Give the wax some time to settle. Give your mouth a break from poking wires or metal and enjoy the comfort wax can provide.
Did you know you can also use dental wax with Invisalign aligners? Sometimes the plastic aligners can cause gum irritation. This is where orthodontic wax can come in handy, covering the area where the plastic may be applying too much pressure and irritating your mouth.
Precautions to Consider with Dental Wax
Orthodontic wax is typically harmless, but there are some precautions you should take when using it.
- Don’t leave it in your mouth for an extended period. You should change it out at least twice a day.
- If it is starting to fall out, don’t force it back in place. Replace it with a new piece of wax.
- Don’t use a single piece for more than a day. Bacteria can build up easily and cause cavities to occur.
- If you see food particles stuck to your wax, remove it and replace it with a fresh piece to prevent bacteria.
- Make sure you brush your teeth well after each meal before applying wax.
Where can I get orthodontic wax?
You can purchase wax at most orthodontist offices, drugstores, and online. It is typically sold in small containers or rolls. These products are fairly inexpensive and can provide relief to your cheeks and lips if orthodontic appliances are irritating them.
The Benefits of Dental Wax
Dental wax has many benefits for people who are wearing braces or other orthodontic devices:
- It prevents food from getting stuck between brackets and causing pain/discomfort. It’s easy for food to get stuck in the back of your mouth and teeth and along your gum line, so pay close attention to these areas.
- It covers up any metal showing through your teeth. If you don’t want people to notice your braces, some apply the product to cover noticeable areas.
- You can use it with Invisalign aligners to prevent gum irritation. Wax can provide relief to all types of irritation caused by orthodontic appliances.
- It comes in different colors to match your braces. If you want to jazz up your braces, apply some color or use a natural colored product to make the metal less noticeable.
FAQs About Orthodontic Wax
Here are some commonly asked questions about dental wax:
How long should I leave the wax in my mouth?
You should replace orthodontic wax at least twice a day.
What if the wax falls out of my mouth?
If the orthodontic wax falls out, replace it with a fresh piece.
What happens if I swallow the wax?
Dental wax is typically harmless if swallowed, but it is recommended to call your doctor if you do.
Can I use dental floss with it?
It is not recommended to use dental floss with orthodontic appliances because it can cause damage to your braces.
Can wax be used with retainers?
Yes, you can use wax with retainers. It is typically applied to the retainer where it is irritating the gums.
What are some other names for orthodontic wax?
It is also known as ortho wax, dental wax, or orthodontic relief wax.
Contact Your Local Dentist in Greensboro, NC
If you’re located in the Greensboro, NC area of the United States, contact the dental team at Lake Jeanette Orthodontics and Pediatric Dentistry for your next orthodontist appointment. We are ready to provide you with the best dental experience and make wearing braces more comfortable. Contact us today!