There’s just something special about a stunning smile, isn’t there? An old adage says a smile is worth a thousand words. This sounds like a silly saying that’s been repeated so many times, it longer carries any meaning. But if recent studies are any indication, this is one proverb that’s probably true.

One study found that roughly 73% of Americans are more trusting of someone with a nice smile than nice clothes or cars. Another study found that our natural instinct for facial mimicry makes smiling contagious.

There are other potential benefits, too:

  • Higher self-esteem
  • Improved mood
  • Greater financial success
  • Less stress

So it makes sense that we’d go pretty far in pursuit of the perfect grin. And with braces fitted by a specialized orthodontist, a smile that dazzles isn’t just a pipedream.

But it isn’t enough to go through the initial procedure without any follow-up. To get the best results, you need to get your braces tightened fairly regularly.

Here’s everything you need to know about braces tightening.

How often do braces get tightened?

Braces tightening is critical to the success of your treatment. You’ll probably notice that after the braces are set, the wires place significant pressure on your teeth. While this can be mildly painful, that discomfort means the braces are doing their job. Over the next few weeks, that pressure will likely decrease — the brackets might even loosen — so you’ll need to get your braces tightened.

No two patients are exactly alike, so frequency here will vary. But as a general rule of thumb, most orthodontists recommend you get your braces tightened or adjusted every 4–10 weeks (about 2 and a half months at the latest).

What happens if I don’t tighten my braces?

Here’s the thing about braces tightening: while there’s a lot we can predict throughout the treatment, there are also a few question marks. Every mouth is different, which means that any set of teeth or gums may not always respond as expected.

Chances are you’ll wear braces for about two years, leaving a lot of room for change. At one point, your teeth might need additional pressure to keep your treatment on track. Or maybe you’ll need to shift how that pressure is applied. There may not be any physical danger or health risks if you don’t get your braces tightened, but the treatment will simply stop working without regular adjustments.

The frequency also depends on the type of braces you wear.

Braces Tightening at Bergen Orthodontics

At Bergen Orthodontics, we put our patients first by using only the best technology, treatments, and techniques. Some people might think getting braces is too much of a hassle or too painful, but we can assure you it’s nothing like what you imagine. If you’re looking for ways to get a show-stopping smile that lights up a room, we can help.

Visit us to find out how often you should get your braces tightened.