What Are Orthodontic Separators?

Hygiene is the most basic presentation of your personality. No matter how much we hate it, but people often judge us by our hygiene. After all, what is the first thing you do when you meet a new person? Smile, right? So make sure you are good at it.

Teeth and jaws often get malposition, for which we refer to an orthodontist. It is a widespread belief that orthodontic processes are painful and stressful. People dread wearing braces.

Imagine going to a dentist for a regular checkup and end up listening to him say, "you need braces, and before putting them on, you need to wear spacers for braces, for some time."

Calm down! Your concerns are natural, and in this article, we will dive deep into the world of braces, spacers for braces, and how you can minimize the struggle you need to face throughout the process.


First of all, we need to know why we need teeth spacers and does everyone needs spacers before braces. Well, most people who get braces need to put on orthodontic spacers or separators. These orthodontic separators are made of rubber or sometimes of metal. The job of orthodontic spacers is to create a specific space before putting on the braces.

Now that you know what orthodontic separators are and why they are necessary let us head to our next query. Does everyone need spacers before braces?

Spacers are a bit uncomfortable. However, they are essential. Orthodontic separators are not a part of braces, but they help prepare teeth for fixed braces. The development of space between the teeth before applying the orthodontic bands to molars is significant. By inserting small metal springs or rubber bands between the back teeth tends to generate space.

The average cost for spacers is included in the whole braces cost as they are the first step towards braces. The entire process's reported price provides for teeth spacers, expanders, braces, retainers, and all the visits were $3,300. Too much money, right? So, read the article below carefully if you don't want your money to go in vain.


Now, the next question that arises in one's mind is, "how long do you wear spacers for braces?" It's a simple procedure to fit spacers (also known as orthodontic separators), but some patients experience some pain. The orthodontist extends the elastic or metal spacer and presses it tightly between the teeth. Once the spacers are inserted right, they can stay in until you get your braces by the end of that week.

Almost 7-10 days is the standard period that most people wear spacers. It can be increased and decreased according to space already present between your teeth.


The most common reason people dread orthodontic processes is the pain that follows. The tension caused by the forced separation of your teeth can cause orthodontic separators pain. Jaw, teeth, and gum are the areas where severe pain is experienced.

As they say, no pain, no gain!

So, it would be best if you were patient with the caused pain. Dentists suggest that you can easily handle this pain through pain killers that do not require a medical prescription. So, all you need to do is stay patient.


The next smart question is, "okay, I can be patient, but how long do spacers hurt?"

To answer this, let me remind you of the purpose of spacers' placement for braces in your teeth. The fundamental reason to place orthodontic spacers was to develop a gap between the teeth. Most patients have small or no gaps between the teeth, due to which wearing a teeth spacer gets painful. So, they will keep hurting as long as there is enough space between the teeth that reduces spacers' pressure.


Well, separators are like the key to the door called braces. The answer to "do spacers hurt more than braces?" is, since it puts pressure on a limited number of teeth, spacers usually do not hurt more than braces. There are just discomfort and mild pain you can feel. It varies from individual to person, however.

You experience more discomfort when separators by the addition of walls between teeth that are in close contact. It's common for individuals, on the other hand, to experience pain from braces. Mostly, for the first 2-3 days after having braces, you experience more discomfort.
Braces hurt more than spacers because, while the mounting od spacers are on fewer teeth, you have to wear braces on so many teeth. The braces place pressure on all of those teeth. So, your jaw or mouth can become sore. Nevertheless, pressure from braces often goes away smoothly. Another thing is that you are familiar with the discomfort of orthodontic separators. You can equate the sensation with the moment when a hard food particle such as meat or bone fiber gets caught in between your teeth.


Various people, mostly the kids, are so scared that they even ask, "can you eat with spacers?"

You can! However, there is a certain kind of food that you can eat with the teeth spacers on. Because spacers are applied to put the pressure on teeth, it can be painful if you eat hard food with them on, resulting in an increment in the stress that your teeth are experiencing.


Dentists suggest soft foods to eat with spacers. Here is a list of soft foods to eat with spacers:
  • Mashed potatoes or meatballs
  • Yogurt
  • Soups
  • Soft cooked chicken
  • Hot cereal
  • Pancakes or puddings, custards
  • Rice
  • Cold drinks (non-sugar, non-carbonated)
  • Soft tortillas
  • Salads (without nuts)
  • Steamed or boiled
  • Fresh juices
Chewing gum and consuming sticky foods (taffy, Gummy Bears, Snickers, or any other sticky candy) should be prevented. Eating such food is discouraged as some people reported their spacers for braces fell out due to hard food consumption. Next time someone asks you, "what to eat with spacers?" make sure you warn them about the consequences of not following the proper protocol regarding food consumption.


Some people might think that popcorns are not hard. But, a dentist's answer, "can you eat popcorn with spacers?" is always no. As harsh as it may sound, but resist going to movies until you get used to eating with your spacers. As I said above, you have to be patient with this process. So, it's okay if you do not eat popcorn with spacers; else, there is a chance your spacers for braces fall out due to the stuck popcorn particles under your spacers.


Spacers may not hurt when first applied, depending on the positioning, then begin to break after some time, or they may start to pull instantly. Spacers can cause pain while chewing, depending on the type, making it difficult to eat certain foods (usually hard or caramelized). Some people can also encounter a feeling similar to having loose milk teeth. Brushing will not trigger displacement of spacers, and frequent, if not more, brushing is encouraged when teeth spacers are in position.


You did not take enough care, and now you are shouting, "my spacers for braces fell out!" However, if you took good care and they still came out, then there is no need for you to feel alarmed. Let me tell you what happens if spacers fall out on their own. Well, falling out depicts the generation of the necessary space for the braces, and now your teeth are ready for the mounts!


By now, you might be wondering what is the next step after spacers for braces are removed. After 7-10 days of wearing the spacers, the orthodontist takes them out and then instantly start the cementing of a metal band in place. This cementing anchor the placement of ceramic braces afterward.


I would quote the same thing again, "no pain, no gain." It is just a few days of pain that you can patiently endure by eating soft food, drinking cold drinks, and taking the pain killers on time.
I am well aware of the fact that this whole process seems agitating and painful. But again, to present your personality in the best manner, it is necessary to have good hygiene. You cannot introduce yourself as a happy, confident person if you cannot smile confidently.
If you have any questions related to the tips for braces, please feel free to call Kipling Family Dentistry at (416) 614-6633.