You’ve invested in orthodontic treatment, and you’re well on your way to achieving the smile of your dreams. We bet you’re excited.
The thing is, if you don’t take the necessary precautions to protect your pearly whites during and after your treatment, you could end up with decay, staining, or gum disease.
In this article, we’ll share our top tips for protecting your teeth during and after orthodontic treatment. Follow these, and enjoy a sparkling, straight smile for years to come. Let’s get started right away.
Tips for protecting your teeth during orthodontic treatment
Whether you’ve opted for metal braces or Invisalign, it’s essential to spend just a few minutes every day caring for your teeth.
Here are some quick and easy tips for effective tooth care during orthodontic treatment.
1. Brush your teeth
Hopefully, you are already in the habit of brushing your teeth for two minutes, two to three times a day. Now that you’re wearing braces – or undergoing a different style of orthodontic treatment – we suggest brushing your teeth after every meal. Food particles can easily become trapped in your braces, and the longer they stay there, the more likely they will cause decay.
Opt for a soft-bristled brush if possible, and feel free to use an electric toothbrush if that’s what you prefer – just don’t apply too much pressure, as this can damage your gums.
If you have traditional braces, start by rinsing your mouth out thoroughly with water. This will help loosen any food that’s stuck in and around your teeth and braces. Brush each tooth by starting at the gum line, and then move on to the brackets and your teeth. Rinse again after brushing with mouthwash to remove any remaining food particles.
2. Floss your teeth
No matter how flawless your brushing technique is, there are some places a toothbrush simply cannot reach. That’s where flossing comes in. Dental floss helps remove plaque and food particles from between your teeth and stuck among your braces.
If you’re in the process of another orthodontic treatment, flossing is still a vital step.
Aim to floss twice a day, once after lunch and once before bedtime. You might also like to use a floss threader – this will give you the control and accuracy you need to clean around your braces.
3. Watch what you eat
Braces and other orthodontic treatments are not compatible with certain types of foods and drinks. Too much sugar can lead to nasty plaque build-ups around the brackets, and this can result in decay and staining.
Sticky and chewy foods – such as caramel, toffee, chewing gum, and dried fruit – can fast become stuck in your braces. Crunchy, hard foods are another thing to watch out for. Nuts, popcorn, and even raw carrots and whole apples can loosen the brackets holding your braces in place.
Tips for protecting your teeth after orthodontic treatment
Congratulations! You’ve put in the time and effort, and now your smile is looking picture-perfect. It is, however, essential to keep up your oral care routine after your orthodontic treatment to maintain a clean, healthy mouth and radiant, straight teeth.
Here are our top tips for protecting your teeth after orthodontic treatment.
1. Follow your orthodontist’s post-treatment recommendations
This one is critical. If your orthodontist recommends that you wear your retainer while you sleep, or for a specified amount of time each day – do it. If you fail to do so, your teeth may move back to where they started from. And you probably don’t want to go through the treatment process again.
Your orthodontist will create a custom retainer just for you. While some minor difficulties talking are normal at first, overall, your retainer should be extremely comfortable. Popping it on before you go to sleep will fast become a habit, just like brushing your teeth.
2. Prepare for tooth sensitivity
Your teeth may be a little sensitive in the days or weeks following your orthodontic treatment. This is normal, and your tooth sensitivity will subside over time.
Avoid eating anything too hot or freezing cold, as this could aggravate your teeth. It’s also a wise idea to steer clear of anything too crunchy or chewy during this time, as your teeth are still settling into their new position.
3. Wait before you whiten
You are loving your new smile. And now you want to finish it off by investing in a professional whitening service. We do suggest, however, waiting about a month before undergoing teeth whitening. As we mentioned, your teeth will be sensitive. Teeth whitening products may cause discomfort.
Get the smile you’ve always wanted
It’s never too late to transform your smile and boost your confidence. Our team would be more than happy to help. Get in touch today to learn more about our effective, innovative orthodontic treatments.
Give our friendly staff a call today on 1800 smileteam (1800 7 6453 8326) to organise your first appointment. Or, secure a spot right now by visiting our Arrange an Assessment page. Our qualified orthodontists will help you determine the best treatment style for your unique needs and requirements.