Congratulations! You have begun orthodontic treatment, and you really anticipate a great looking and healthy smile when those braces come off. In the meantime, Dr. Kishawn Kole-James of Superior Orthodontics in Detroit, Huntington Woods & West Bloomfield Township, MI urges you to be diligent about oral hygiene at home because no matter the type of braces you wear, plaque and tartar accumulate. You know what that can mean--cavities and gum disease. So learn all you can about caring for your smile as you wear braces. You smile will be the better for it.
Types of braces in Detroit, Huntington Woods & West Bloomfield Township, MI
In general, there are four kinds of braces:
- Traditional metal brackets and archwires
- Tooth-colored ceramic braces
- Lingual braces mounted to the tongue-side of teeth
- Clear aligners such as Invisalign
Of course, Dr. Kole-James individualizes your treatment plan to correct your specific smile issues. Your orthodontic appliances will move your teeth into healthier and more attractive alignment. Regardless of the kind of braces you wear, you need to take care of your mouth so your treatment plan progresses properly and so your teeth and gums stay as healthy as possible.
What you should know
The team at Superior Orthodontics recommends the following basic care for their patients--whether children, teens or adults.
1. Brush morning and night with a soft-bristled brush and fluoride toothpaste. Be gentle as you brush around brackets and wires so you don't dislodge or break them. Also, limit in-between meal snacking as much as possible. When you floss, be sure to take your time so you remove as many food particles as possible from around brackets and between teeth.
2. Limit your intake of sugary and starchy foods and beverages as these dietary choices encourage the growth of harmful plaque. Additionally, drink plenty of water throughout the day as water washes tooth surfaces and stimulates antibacterial saliva.
3. Avoid extra hard or sticky foods such as pretzels, bagels, celery, and taffy. Don't chew ice or bite your pencil or other non-food items (fingernails included).
4. The American Dental Association (ADA) highly recommends orthodontic patients wear custom-made athletic mouth guards when playing sports to avoid damage to the appliances, and more importantly, to the soft tissues of the mouth.
5. If you do break a wire or lose a bracket, contact Dr. Kole-James right away for advice or a same-day dental visit if necessary. Your team at Superior Orthodontics knows the right interventions for these urgent problems. Also, if you have a broken wire or sore spot in your mouth, cover the irritating area of your appliances with over the counter orthodontic wax until you see your orthodontist.
6. Continue to get six-month cleanings and check-ups with your dentist.
Your best smile
You'll have it when your orthodontic treatment is over. While you wait for those fabulous results, take care of your teeth and gums. Contact Superior Orthodontics with offices in Detroit, Huntington Woods & West Bloomfield Township, MI if you have any questions or concerns about your braces. Call (248) 957-0495.