What To Expect When You Get Your Braces Off

At Tilghman Orthodontics, our team is dedicated to providing a comfortable and smooth journey as you work towards a straightened smile. As the time approaches for appliance removal, Dr. Tilghman will help you prepare for your appointment and share how to best maintain your best afterward. Read on to learn more about what to expect when you get your braces off!

When Can Your Braces Be Taken Off?

As you approach your final weeks in braces, you will begin to notice some telltale signs that your teeth are ready to be set free and show off your new smile, many of which you may have already seen: less discomfort between tightenings and adjustments, chewing becomes more manageable, less time between your appointments, and your teeth become noticeably straighter. 

If you are curious about a particular sign you have noticed, let Dr. Tilghman know; he will happily tell you more about what is happening. Our team is always willing to answer questions and involve you in the process.

How Does Dr. Tilghman Remove Your Appliance?

Taking less than an hour, the braces removal procedure is a simple and painless process that you get to lay back and relax during. Our team is here to explain what you can expect so there are no surprises on the day of.

Clipping the Archwire

The first step takes the shortest. We begin by removing the archwire that connects everything together. Dr. Tilghman will begin by clipping and unthreading it from each bracket. He will also remove any additional components you may have on your appliance, such as orthodontics bands, ligatures, and elastics.

Detaching Your Brackets

Next, we remove each of the brackets from your teeth with the help of special orthodontic pliers. When they were placed, Dr. Tilghman used bonding cement, which made them feel permanent so they wouldn’t budge throughout treatment, but with the right tools, they are easily removable. He will gently pry them off, so you may feel slight pressure during this step, but we assure you it will remain painless.

Smoothing Off Excess Glue

The final step is eliminating extra glue left after your brackets are gone using a high-speed drill. We use it to smooth over the surface, going no further than that, leaving your smile with an excellent finish. We understand some patients have negative associations with drills due to past dental drill work or painful procedures. If you would like us to take a break during this step or the rest of the process, we will be happy to do so.

You’re All Set!

After this, your appliance is finally removed! As you enter a braces-free life and enjoy your brand-new smile, remember to keep the set of retainers we give you handy so you can maintain all of the work accomplished and enjoy your results for a lifetime.

Get Your Braces Off

Why Should You Prioritize Your Follow-Ups?

Even after your braces are gone, we continue to see you for infrequent follow-up appointments to ensure that everything is going according to your treatment plan and that no issues have arisen since the last time we saw you. 

It is essential you prioritize this time, as we get fewer chances to do so. If necessary further treatment is necessary, getting it done sooner rather than later can save you from future procedures. This is also the perfect opportunity to ask any questions you may have thought of.

When Can You Get Back To Regular Eating?

In the days following your braces removal appointment, your teeth and gums may feel slightly sore. Your appliance has placed constant pressure on them for the past year, so they will need some time to adjust to its absence. Dr. Tilghman recommends remaining on a soft-food diet and slowly transitioning into crunchier foods to allow your teeth to get used to the sensation again. This way, excessive pressure will not be placed on them as they heal. 

How Should You Maintain Your Oral Health? 


After your appliance partially obstructed your teeth for over a year, maintaining your oral hygiene is crucial. Brushing with a soft-bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste is the best way to keep everything in excellent condition and protect yourself from decay, plaque build-up, and bacteria. Doing so twice daily is the best way to guarantee long-term health.


Small food particles can get stuck between your teeth after meals, where your toothbrush cannot reach. Flossing will be much easier without your wires in the way and without needing the help of special tools like a threader. We recommend doing so once a day before you go to bed. Just like brushing, the more often you practice this routine, the better condition your teeth will be in in the future.


A great way to complement your routine is using mouthwash. Many formulas include fluoride, the same material your toothpaste likely contains, helping to maximize the benefits of this ingredient and keeping your teeth as healthy as possible. Remember to use mouthwash in addition to brushing and flossing, as opposed to a replacement.

Tongue Scraper

Brushing your teeth does a great job of ridding your mouth of harmful bacteria, but if you don’t directly use a tongue scraper to clean your tongue, enough bacteria can remain to cause harm. This step takes only a minute and can protect your teeth even longer!

Get Your Braces Off

Show Off Your New Smile!

After your braces treatment, you can continue to count on Tilghman Orthodontics as your support system as you adjust to life with your appliance. Whenever questions come to mind, feel free to contact our office, and we will connect you with the right team member to address your concerns. We provide expert orthodontic services to Berlin, Salisbury, and the surrounding communities. Schedule your free consultation with Dr. Tilghman today, and begin your teeth straightening journey!