Belle Meade
Berry Farms

Caring for Your Braces

Top tips and advice from our Tennessee Orthodontists for more effective orthodontic treatment.

Problems With Your Braces?

If you're having an orthodontic emergency, please follow our instructions below.

Living With Braces

Your guide to hygiene, eating, and maintenance while wearing braces.

Little girl wearing braces and speaking with her Nashville orthodontist about braces care

Many feel orthodontics and braces will hugely impact their lifestyle, but with our modern options, this isn’t the case. Our caring orthodontists help create a treatment plan, so you can enjoy your day-to-day life (without compromise) while we straighten your smile. We’ll help you identify the right toothbrush, toothpaste, dental floss, and any additional products for your specific appliance.

We want your orthodontic journey to be as smooth and easy as possible! Here some top tips to help you:

  • Improve your oral hygiene routine
  • Choose the right foods to eat
  • Care for your retainer
  • Make the most out of Invisalign®

Dr. Lucas and our team of Tennessee orthodontists are your partners throughout your treatment. We’re also your friends and are here to help you enjoy your passage to a beautifully aligned smile.

Little girl wearing braces and speaking with her Nashville orthodontist about braces care
Is it normal to have discomfort?

From time-to-time, you can expect your teeth to feel a little sore. This normally occurs just after fitting your braces – known as the “time of adjustment.” Any discomfort…Learn if braces should hurt… can be treated with Advil or Motrin. However, if this persists, please contact us…Visit our contact page….

Should my teeth feel sensitive?

It is not uncommon for your teeth to be more sensitive to hot or cold foods. This should not persist for a long time, so if it does, please contact one of your orthodontists’ offices.

How strong are my braces?

This will vary depending on the type of treatment you are having. Although all braces are strong enough to align our teeth, they do need to be kept clean and cared for in an appropriate manner.

Oral Hygiene During Your Treatment

Keep your braces in top condition for the best possible results.
Young female patient learns how to care for her braces by cleaning her teeth at the sink in one of our offices
Your Routine
The most important aspect when caring for your teeth during orthodontic treatment is to maintain a solid oral hygiene routine. You need to be a little more vigilant when brushing before bed, so your teeth and braces are spotless. We recommend brushing after meals too so you can remove any debris or build-up. Our team shows you the ideal brushing and flossing techniques once your braces are fitted.
A fruit salad on a desk
Food & Drink
We also help you avoid potential issues by identifying food that could damage your braces or compromise your treatment. This includes black-listing sticky food, certain hard foods (i.e., candy, ice, or nuts), and damaging chewing habits. Don’t worry though! You can still enjoy plenty of delicious meals and snacks.
Young girl pointed to her braces on her teeth as she learns about braces care.
Keep Them Clean
As with your natural teeth, it is also important to check that you are doing a good job when caring for your braces. Brush and floss in front of a mirror so you can identify anything that has been missed and quickly inspect the health of your braces. If you notice anything out of place or stuck, please call our office.
Get the Inside Track
Hear from one of our current orthodontic patients.


We have had such a great experience with Dr. Lucas and his staff in the Belle Meade location. The waiting area is lovely, and we are seen quickly. Everyone is friendly and I love the conservative approach to orthodontic care. I would highly recommend!

Destiny S. (Belle Meade Patient)

How to Care for Your Retainer

The better you care for it, the better it’ll care for you.
An orthodontist showing how to maintain your retainers by using a computer

Both removable and permanent-bonded (fixed) retainers are an effective way to stabilize your teeth and keep them in their desired position. Therefore, it is vital to wear your retainer as prescribed and also keep it in good shape. To help you with this, our team has provided some expert advice on increasing the longevity of your removable retainer.

  • Remove your retainer before eating, brushing, or flossing (unless fixed)
  • Use the case provided to store your retainer
  • Clean your retainer after use by using baking soda, mouthwash, or denture tablets
  • Keep them away from heat
  • Do not wear your retainer during sports
  • Wear the retainer as instructed by your orthodontist

We also have some advice when wearing a fixed retainer too. Be sure to brush and floss after meals in addition to your twice-a-day routine. We recommend using an interdental toothbrush and orthodontic floss. Our team will provide specific instructions on brushing and flossing at the time of your retainer fitting. We’ll also highlight any foods to avoid and additional care instructions.

Please note: If your bonded retainer detaches from any of your teeth, please call us ASAP so we can arrange for a speedy repair.

One of our orthodontists pointing to a computer screen while the patient lays in the chair
Four tooth models in a row with various styles of braces on them

Invisalign® Aligner Care

Maintain your clear aligners for optimal results.
One of our doctors holding an Invisalign aligner

Although we only recommend removing your Invisalign® aligners for eating, drinking, brushing, and flossing, there is some maintenance needed. It is imperative for you to keep your aligning trays clean and in excellent condition. The good news is it is simple and fast to do!

Here are some simple steps:

  • To begin, remove your aligners and place them in the container
  • Wash your hands and handle each aligner separately
  • Rinse the aligners with warm water
  • Gently clean the trays with toothpaste

At Lucas Orthodontic Group, we suggest using the official Invisalign® Clean Systems equipped with cleaning crystals. You can learn more about this system by contacting one of our offices.

A Higher Standard of Care
We go the extra mile before, during, and after your treatment.