PLAYING WITH BRACES
If you are a woodwind or brass player, playing with braces can be difficult at first. Here are some tips for playing with braces.
Woodwinds - especially clarinet, bass clarinet, alto, tenor and bari saxophone players
The only time that you should feel uncomfortable is when you first get your braces or when you get them tightened. Putting your teeth on the top of your mouthpiece will feel weird, or might even hurt. On these days:
1. Take frequent breaks while practicing or in rehearsal
2. Try not to "bite" down so hard on your mouthpiece
3. Know that your teeth will feel better in a day or two, and then everything will feel normal
As a tuba player who had braces, I understand the pain and frustration that comes along with getting braces as a brass player. When you first get braces you might experience the following:
2. Not being able to play high/low notes that you used to be able to play easily
3. Cuts/sores on the inside of your lips
What you can do to fix it:
1. Put wax on the brackets that are causing you the most pain or cutting you
2. Don't jam the mouthpiece into your face.
3. Use your air instead of your muscles to make the notes come out
4. Know that you will get used to your braces, it just takes a while for the inside of your mouth to adjust