March 30, 2023
Nothing is more frightening than having a loose adult tooth because you only get one set of permanent teeth. If you’ve recently begun orthodontic treatment, it can be alarming if your teeth suddenly feel a little loose. There’s no reason to panic because it’s normal for them to loosen. Here’s why it’s an expected part of your treatment process.
How Do Braces Work?
Whether wearing metal braces or clear aligners, your teeth will loosen as they shift from their current positions. Orthodontic systems use continual pressure to move teeth into their best positions. They are moved in small increments to ensure it does not cause any damage to the roots, surrounding tissues, or underlying bone. Your dentist will reposition them with the utmost precision to ensure successful results.
Why Are My Teeth Loose?
As your teeth begin to move, they will feel a little loose because the periodontal ligament won’t be as tight. Contrary to popular belief, the roots of your teeth are not fused to your jawbone. Instead, they lay in a pocket of periodontium tissues. The tissue not only holds your teeth in place, but it also protects them from bacteria and also alerts you to pain when chewing something too hard.
Since braces apply pressure on your teeth, the ligaments, tissues, and fibers supporting them will elongate, creating a little wiggle room. Many patients report the feeling of their teeth floating.
Your teeth may feel a little less stable for about 2 to 3 days after an adjustment or switching to a new aligner. Although this can take some time to get used to, it’s no reason for concern. Eating soft foods can help with any pain or the feeling of looseness.
Will My Teeth Tighten?
It may take time to get used to the unusual sensation, but it won’t last forever. The feeling will go away after your braces are removed.
Your jaw will adjust to the new positions of your teeth and solidify them in place. It’s important to wear your retainer as instructed by your dentist to allow your periodontal ligaments and bones to solidify around your teeth to keep them in place. This will prevent them from slowly moving back into their previous positions.
Don’t panic if your teeth are a little wiggly. It’s a sign your treatment is working. However, if you feel like your teeth are looser than they should be, don’t hesitate to contact your dentist.
About Dr. Reema Dhingra
Dr. Dhingra earned her dental degree from the Tufts School of Dental Medicine and completed her orthodontic certification at the Tufts School of Orthodontics. She is a proud member of many professional organizations, including the American Association of Orthodontics and the New England Society of Orthodontics. Request an appointment through our website or call (508) 859-4263.
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