Orthodontic Information Sheets » Braces & Wind Instruments
At first you may find that your brace affects your ability to play your wind instrument. However, this will improve with time and practice.
Before you start orthodontic treatment find out what type of brace you will need, and talk to your orthodontist about the instrument you play. If you are having a new brace fitted try to arrange this at a time when you do not have any important performances.
Functional braces and removable braces can be taken out of your mouth whilst you play your wind instrument. It's a good idea to let your orthodontist know how many hours you practice each day, because leaving your brace out for long periods of time may affect your treatment.
Treatment with fixed braces can affect your ability to play a wind instrument, but it is very highly unlikely that this will last for more than a few months.
If you play a woodwind instrument you will probably adjust to playing with your brace on very quickly. Your playing is likely to return to normal within a few weeks.
If you play a brass instrument you may have problems playing high notes when your brace is first fitted. Do not worry your playing is likely to return to normal within a few months. As the mouthpiece of a brass instrument is pressed against the lips, some players find that the inside of their mouth can become sore whilst playing. You could ask your music teacher if your mouthpiece can be changed for a larger one, which may help to spread the load more evenly over your lips. You can also try using some brace wax to protect your lips and cheeks whilst you are playing.
Wind instrument players sometimes get a dry mouth whilst practising or performing. It is best to drink water if your mouth is feeling dry.
If you have teeth removed as part of your treatment, it may be a good idea to stop playing your instrument until your mouth has fully healed.
At the completion of your orthodontic treatment and your brace has been removed it will probably take a little while to get used to playing without a brace.