Does Getting Braces Off Hurt?

Getting braces off is an exciting moment, especially for teenagers. Nowadays, this is almost a rite of passage for young people everywhere. Many wait this day with both enthusiasm, and anxiety, asking their orthodontist: does getting braces off hurt? This article will answer this question for you, explaining the process of braces removal. We will also provide tips on how to take care of your teeth after braces.

It is important to remember that when getting braces off your teeth and gums will be sensitive. Thus, you will have to pay extra attention to your diet, and dental hygiene. Your orthodontist will recommend you a retainer, to keep your teeth in place. Read on to find what to expect when braces are taken off, and how to protect your teeth after braces.

Does Getting Your Braces Off Hurt?

Many people will ask friends or family who have had their braces removed: does it hurt to get your braces off? Some will receive mixed answers, but in truth, the answer is a big and fortunate no, getting your braces off will not hurt you. Although you may hear some cracking and popping during the removal, this is perfectly normal and is not harming your teeth, nor will it cause any pain.

The tool that the orthodontist will use to remove the braces can sometimes cause a feeling of pressure, but the pressure does not cause pain. There may be a bit of discomfort and slight feeling of popping, but it will not hurt! Keep in mind that getting used to your new retainer afterward may indeed hurt, though.

Getting Braces Off Procedure

In this section we will take a quick look at how are braces removed. The entire process of braces removal take approximately 1 hour in an orthodontist’s office.

  1. The orthodontist will use pliers that are specifically for removing braces to squeeze each bracket at the bottom and peel it off of the tooth, successfully separating the tooth and the bracket wholly. The bracket will often be removed in one piece, but some are designed to break into pieces. This step repeats until the brackets have all been removed.
  2. If you have bands that stretch over individual teeth, these will also be removed with pliers.
  3. Once the braces are off, there will be some residual cement or glue on your teeth. While the taste may be unpleasant, it is a simple process to scrape off the glue that only takes around five minutes. The glue is removed by a high speed device, or by taking it off with special pliers. You may experience a little sensitivity while this happens, but no pain.
  4. With the braces and glue gone, your orthodontist will want to go ahead and make the mold for your retainer. Almost everyone who has braces removed is going to need to wear a retainer afterwards.

Sometimes the retainer can be a fixed metal bar, while other times it will be one that slides on. The mold will be like the one the orthodontist made before you got your braces. You can read here the answers to braces removal FAQs.

Tips on How to Take Care for Your Teeth After Braces

In this portion, we will offer tips that will hopefully make your post-braces experience more pleasant!

  1. Avoid the foods that you have had to sacrifice because of your braces for short time longer. While it may be tempting, your teeth need time to heal and adapt to the new conditions that they are under, including their new sensitivity.
  2. Closely follow your orthodontist’s instructions on aftercare for your teeth. Follow them correctly and you will be able to get rid of your retainer sooner rather than later.
  3. Be kind to the newly-exposed enamel as it is going to be dry and sensitive. Wait a minimum of one month before you try and use any bleaching or whitening remedies and especially avoid acidic food and drinks.
  4. Schedule a dental cleaning before you leave the office as there will probably be a few places your toothbrush and string of floss weren’t able to reach due to the braces.

Does Getting Braces Off Hurt – Conclusion

All in all, it will take some getting used to, but with maintenance and patience, your smile will be worth the effort.

Asking, “does getting braces off hurt?” can garner a number of answers, but the reality is that it does not. Instead, one will feel pressure, but that is all. The most painful part of getting them removed can lie in the retainer, but even that isn’t too bad.

After getting the braces taken off, take special care to look after your new teeth to keep them healthy and looking their best.

Do you have any tips for those about to have their braces removed? What was your experience like? What steps did you take to care for your teeth after the fact? Let us know about your experience in the “Comments” section!


  • Thankfully, I never had braces so I’m not familiar with this. However, I am familiar with getting dental work done and I know sometimes I want to say “ouch” even though it doesn’t hurt, but it’s my ‘auto reaction’ to the pulling and tugging I feel the dentist doing.

    • Hello, Carolyn!

      I think everyone can relate to your experience. Going to the dentist, even if it is just for an insignificant procedure, can definitely be scary for most people.

      Have a nice day! 🙂

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