LAKEVILLE, SHAKOPEE AND ST. PAUL, MINNESOTA– Braces are the vehicle that takes your teeth to their final destination of a straight and beautiful smile.
That vehicle needs to be properly maintained and cared for if it’s going to get to its destination in a timely manner, and without expensive repairs and setbacks.
Dr. Trudy Bonvino, a Lakeville and Shakopee orthodontics provider, shares these five tips for caring for braces and teeth during orthodontic treatment:
Floss Teeth Twice a Day
Flossing can help you clean areas between teeth and other places toothbrushes can miss. A floss threader can be used to help you navigate safely around your appliances. It’s important to floss twice a day, preferably after lunch and before bedtime to help ward off gum disease and decay.
Brush Teeth After Every Meal
Teeth and appliances should be brushed after every meal and before bedtime using soft strokes and a fluoride toothpaste. An interdental toothbrush is a must-have for orthodontic patients, since it’s able to clean the hard-to-reach areas under wires better than an ordinary toothbrush.
Be Consistent With Elastics
If we have prescribed elastics, they are to be worn at all times, except when eating meals or brushing teeth. It’s important that you wear the correct size elastics and have a stash of extras in case our Lakeville, Prior Lake and St. Paul orthodontist‘s office is closed, since teeth can develop resistance to their pressure when they aren’t worn consistently.
“By missing one day of wearing their elastics after even a week of consistent use, patients risk their teeth moving back to their original position,” says Dr. Bonvino. ” I can’t stress enough how this phase requires cooperation and consistency on the patient’s behalf.”
Address Damage Promptly
In cases where damage has occurred to the appliance, you should contact our office immediately to set up an appointment to fix the appliance. If a wire or bracket is irritating sensitive oral tissues, applying wax and using an antiseptic rinse can provide relief until an appointment can be made.
Follow Food Guidelines
When being treated with braces and other orthodontic appliances, certain foods must be avoided. Foods that are hard or chewy like beef jerky and candy can cause costly damage and add months to your treatment time.
At Cosmopolitan Orthodontics, invisible braces such as Invisalign can conveniently be removed to allow you to eat and care for your teeth as normal without risking damage to your appliance. However, it’s important to keep the aligners clean, since they can house bacteria that may lead to cavities.
We recommend soaking aligners in denture cleaner to prevent this from occurring.
By following these tips and guidelines, patients ensure quicker results with fewer setbacks and unnecessary costs due to damage and additional appointments that may be required, says Dr. Bonvino, St. Paul braces provider.
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