You’ve finally arrived home after a long, tiring day. Of course, one of the best ways to wind down is to kick up your legs or go out with friends and enjoy a drink. There’s nothing wrong with having a drink or two on occasion.

But what can alcohol do to your oral health? If you’re getting orthodontic treatment, can you drink alcohol with braces? In this article, we’ll answer those questions and give some tips on caring for your braces when drinking alcohol. 

But first, let’s look at what braces are and how they work.

A Brief Look at Braces

Braces are orthodontic devices used by dentists to correct crooked or misaligned teeth or a bad bite. Braces gradually straighten and align your teeth, improving your bite and dental health. They are typically worn for two years or more.

Who They’re For

Orthodontic treatment generally begins as early as age nine for children once their permanent teeth erupt. However, most children start treatment around age 12 to 14 years old.

Never think that you’re too old for braces: adults can also get braces if they have issues with the position of their teeth or their bite. Adult braces have grown more common over the years. 

Anyone with permanent teeth, misalignment, or bite issues could be a candidate for braces.

How They Work

Modern braces consist of a single bracket cemented on the front of every tooth. The brackets can be metal, clear or tooth-colored. They are connected with metal wires anchored by a few bands in the back of the mouth.

Your Las Vegas orthodontist will periodically tighten or switch out the wires on your braces. The brackets exert constant pressure on your teeth and jaws, gradually shifting your teeth and jaw alignment to their correct position over time.

Alcohol and Braces — Is It Okay?

There’s nothing wrong with alcohol as long as you drink in moderation. Furthermore, alcohol does not directly damage any part of your braces.

However, there are some effects on your oral health that you should keep in mind.

Since most alcoholic beverages contain acid, they can begin to erode your enamel if left on your teeth too long. Furthermore, most mixed drinks contain both sugar and acid. Overconsumption of these types of alcohol can gradually cause plaque buildup, weaken your teeth, and lead to cavities. Regularly drinking red or darker-covered colored alcoholic beverages can result in yellowed or stained teeth. 

How can you avoid these issues?:

  • Drink colored alcoholic beverages through a straw
  • Drink in moderation
  • Drink water regularly
  • Floss and brush every day
  • Visit your dentist regularly

You Can Enjoy Life with Braces

You can enjoy your social life without worrying about alcohol and braces. Alcohol does not damage them, though you want to drink in moderation and keep a good oral routine to minimize the chance of any issues.At Hansen Orthodontics, your Las Vegas orthodontist Dr. Hansen provides orthodontic treatment for all ages — children, teens, and adults. Are you interested in braces for you or your child? Visit us online and book a consultation to begin your journey to straight, healthy teeth!