While you have braces, you’ll have regular appointments with your orthodontists for adjustments. Since you’re seeing your orthodontist regularly, do you really need to keep seeing your regular dentist?
There’s a big difference between dentist appointments and adjustments with your orthodontist, and both are important.
Why You Need Dentist Appointments During Orthodontic Treatment
Even though your orthodontist went through dental school, he or she has specialized in orthodontia and doesn’t perform the same functions as a dentist. Your appointments are focused on correcting your smile and bite.
Dentists take care of everything else. From the health of your gums and regular cleanings to thorough exams that can detect cavities or other problems, your dentist still serves a very important function that your orthodontist doesn’t. Especially while you have braces, taking care of your teeth is necessary.
Caring for your braces takes a little more effort than regular oral hygiene. Keeping up a healthy care routine is a big part of preventing cavities and staining while you have braces.
Without proper cleaning, you might end up with white spots on your teeth when the brackets come off.
Braces can also hold food particles against your teeth, increasing the risk of decay and cavities.
Home care can prevent a lot of problems, and regular visits to your dentist are the extra step to keep your teeth healthy, white, and strong.
Home Care Tips
To reduce your risk of cavities, white spots, gum recession, and other painful problems, it’s wise to make a few small changes to your habits.
Avoiding sugar is a good idea in general, but it’s especially smart while you’re undergoing orthodontic treatment. Sugar increases bacterial growth in your mouth, which means more plaque, more cavities, and worse breath. Cutting back is great for your teeth and for your overall heath.
Your dentist may recommend using a fluoride rinse during treatment to help prevent cavities. Use a fluoride toothpaste, too.
Be mindful of foods that can stain tooth enamel like coffee and wine, and if you smoke, consider cutting back of quitting to prevent white spots when brackets come off.
And, of course, follow your orthodontist’s instructions regarding foods to avoid, cleaning, and care.