Why is oral health essential during orthodontic treatment?
When you have orthodontic appliances in your mouth, you have likely noticed there are many places for food and plaque to get caught. Cleaning your teeth is essential to prevent gum disease and cavities. It will take more than a toothbrush to clean around the orthodontic wires and brackets.
Plaque needs to be removed from the 5 surfaces of the tooth: the cheek side, tongue side, chewing surfaces, and between the teeth on both sides. Now it must also be removed from any hooks, bands, brackets, wires, or any other appliances you may have in your mouth. There are so many surfaces to think about.
Here are five tips to consider during your orthodontic treatment:
- Food will get caught everywhere. It is necessary to have hygiene tools with you on the go. This will become a standard for you. The TePe EasyPick is a comfortable interdental cleaning tool that comes with a travel case.
- Plaque left on the tooth and around the brackets can create dental disease. Getting a cavity while in orthodontics can delay how long you have braces. Try to be extra cautious and use a systematic approach when cleaning. Your diligence will pay off in the end.
- Plaque not only creates cavities and gum disease but if it is left on the tooth surface for too long, it can create a “white spot,” or a scar on the tooth. This means it will not go away. This occurred due to continual demineralization and remineralization. Once you get your braces off, you will be excited to see beautiful straight teeth, but may be met with a scar that shows the outline of the orthodontic bracket. Be sure to clean around the brackets during your orthodontic treatment to prevent these “white spots.”
- When the teeth and gums are not cared for during orthodontic treatment, the gums can start to swell. If they swell around the brackets, this can be painful, harder to clean and make it difficult when it is time for the braces to come off. A good cleaning routine can help prevent this from happening.
- With brackets and wires, you can develop little cuts or ulcers in your cheeks. When your mouth is sore, it can be difficult to clean your mouth thoroughly. Remember to be gentle while you clean your mouth. TePe makes extra soft interdental brushes to use when tissue is sensitive.
Be sure to take good care of your investment so that you can be met a gorgeous, clean smile once you are all done!