Common Mistakes to Avoid When Wearing Braces
Getting braces is an effective way to treat crooked teeth, bad bites, and other related issues. But getting a perfect smile is a major investment, not just because of the upfront cost of getting braces but also the things it’ll take to maintain it. Braces, whether the traditional metal type or invisible aligners, require some level of care to achieve desired results. Also, there are specific rules you need to follow to maintain your dental and oral health during the few months you’ll have the braces on. The following are some of the common mistakes to avoid if you have braces on:
Poor Oral Hygiene
After installing your braces, your orthodontist will give you basic hygiene tips to maintain your oral health. It is in your best interest to follow these tips to the letter. While everyone needs to maintain good oral hygiene, it is particularly important for people with braces. Food particles can get trapped under your braces, and plaque may also build up on your teeth.
Poor oral hygiene when wearing braces can lead to tooth decay, infections, or discoloration of your teeth. Generally, you should maintain basic dental hygiene rules such as brushing your teeth at least twice daily, rinsing your mouth after each meal, flossing, and so on. Brushing and flossing your teeth can get a little more complicated after you get braces, but you need to do it regularly to get rid of plaque and maintain a healthy mouth.
Eating Food That Can Damage Your Braces
One of the implications of installing aligners for your teeth is that you may need to forgo some foods for a while. Generally, experts recommend avoiding hard or crunchy foods such as nuts, hard candy, ice cubes, apples, and other crunchy fruits and vegetables. Click here to see our recommended orthodontic food list.
In addition to these, you should also avoid sticky foods such as gum, gummy candy, bagels, and pizza. Sugary foods and drinks are also bad for your teeth because they increase plaque buildup on your teeth, causing decay and yellowing. Since plaque is harder to remove when you have braces on, it’s best to limit your intake of foods that can increase the buildup on your teeth.
The freedom to eat whatever you want despite having braces on is the primary reason many people opt for invisible aligners (Invisalign). With this type of aligner, you can simply remove the braces before each meal and brush your teeth afterward before you put it in. The implication is that you’re free to eat anything as you normally would as long as you remove the aligners first and clean your mouth afterward.
Chewing on Foreign Objects
Some people have the habit of putting foreign objects like pen caps, fingernails, erasers, and so on in their mouths and chewing on them. This is a particularly serious problem with kids, and parents getting braces for their kids need to watch them as these objects can damage their braces. Chewing on hard foreign things like this can bend the wire or dislodge the bracket on your braces.
Skipping Your Orthodontist Appointments
Getting braces installed for your teeth is a long-term commitment. After the orthodontists at OMG Smiles install braces for your teeth, they will instruct you about how often you need to return to have your teeth checked. For metal braces, your return orthodontist office appointment is to check on the progress of your treatment and to tighten the wires of the braces as it adjusts the position of your teeth. Usually, you will need to return every four to eight weeks to have your braces checked.
For patients that get Invisalign, dental clinic visits are less rigorous. The goal is typically to check your progress and determine if you can move on to the next tray in the set. Skipping these appointments is not recommended, as you may end up delaying your treatment. Additionally, orthodontist appointments during your treatment ensure that any issues are identified promptly and fixed without delay.
Not Using Retainers
After your braces are removed, you will be required to wear retainers on your teeth for the next few weeks or months. It is vital that you wear your retainers diligently. The alignment achieved by wearing braces is not permanent. You risk undoing all the months of discomfort if you fail to follow this rule.
Usually, your orthodontist will give you specific instructions on how long you need to wear retainers after your treatment. While some patients have to wear retainers daily for a few weeks, others must continue wearing them for up to 12 months after their treatment. It all depends on your specific situation.
You will also get specific instructions about cleaning your teeth and your retainers to prevent bacteria buildup on your teeth. You should follow these instructions as well for your own good. Some basic rules include rinsing your retainers, not using toothpaste on them, disinfecting correctly, and so on. Ask your orthodontists for specific care instructions after you’ve had your braces removed.
Attempting To Fix Damaged Braces on Your Own
Occasionally, people end up with broken brackets. This may be due to an accident or any other reason. If this ever happens to you, you should avoid trying to fix the damaged braces on your own, even if the damage seems minor. Not only do you not know what you’re doing, you probably don’t have the right materials for a proper fix.
At the end of the day, you will not be able to put the braces back on the right way. There’s also the risk of causing further damage or getting injured because of a poor fix. At best, you can temporarily fix loose wires or hold them in place until you can visit your orthodontist. Give your orthodontist a call right away to schedule an emergency appointment and get your braces fixed. Don’t worry about getting judged. Cases like yours are more common than you might think, and the experts won’t mind at all.
Getting braces is an excellent way to achieve the perfect smile you have always wanted. However, it is vital that you avoid the mistakes highlighted above for a smooth teeth realignment process. If you need braces or Invisalign or have further questions about taking care of your braces, contact OMG Smiles to speak to a professional orthodontist. They’ll give you all the information about caring for your teeth and maintaining perfect dental hygiene during your treatment. Call now to schedule an appointment.