Anyone who has ever worn braces knows there’s no better feeling than running your tongue over bracket-free teeth for the very first time after you get your braces off. On average, most people wear braces for at least eighteen months to achieve a straighter smile, and there are some things that your child (or you!) will need to do after the day the brackets and wires finally come off.
Check in with Their Dentist
You may think it’s tough to get a complete clean when your oral hygiene routine includes brackets and wires, and you’re absolutely right! Scheduling a dental exam right after braces are removed is the perfect time for your dentist to evaluate the health of your child’s teeth, and how well they were able to be cleaned during the orthodontic treatment.
Your dentist will be thoroughly checking for:
Cavities. It’s difficult to get a thorough clean of your teeth with brackets and wires in the way, which leads to cavities that will need to be treated once the braces are removed. Undetected cavities can eventually lead to tooth loss, so getting any cavities filled while they are still small problems is always best.
Plaque Buildup. The white spots visible on teeth after braces are normally caused by the buildup of plaque. You develop plaque when bacteria are able to accumulate on the surfaces of your teeth, and braces make it easy for plaque to hide and go unnoticed.
Areas of Decalcification. You might see little white spots on the surfaces of the teeth, that are a lighter shade than the rest of the natural enamel on the tooth. These white spots on their teeth are locations where the minerals have been worn down or removed. If left untreated, these white spots can turn into cavities on the surfaces of the teeth.
Discoloration. Your child’s teeth might be a little yellow after having braces removed, and the areas where the brackets were cemented to the surface of the teeth may be noticable. Most discoloration fades away with time and with the help from whitening products such as a whitening toothpaste, or a home whitening kit.
Get Some Special Treats
When wearing braces, especially as a teen, there are a lot of things your child has been missing – especially when it comes to treats and what is braces-friendly. Gone are the days of longing to sink your teeth into an apple; it’s time to celebrate this huge accomplishment!
Make this already big day even more special by throwing a braces-free dinner party full of all the things your child has been missing out on for all those months and don’t forget..
- A bowl of bubble gum
- Apples (or add some caramel and sprinkles for an extra special treat!)
- Corn on the cob
- Hard candies
Take some great photos and share with the world those straight, healthy teeth!
Read Up on Retainer Wear
If you’ve just gotten your braces off, you’re probably very eager to have wire-free teeth. But those straight new teeth aren’t going to stay that way without consistent wear of your retainers. Around the clock retainer wearing is only for a set period of time after you get your braces off, and soon you will be graduating to wearing your retainers only at night.
Wearing your retainers will help your teeth settle into their new positions and allow for your bone and the tissues surrounding your teeth to become accustomed to the new alignment of your bite.
Talk about the Future
You committed a lot of time to braces, and ensuring that your teeth remain in the straight position your braces left them is completely up to you, and requires some additional work to ensure your smile stays that way. Teeth shift, and they need ongoing maintenance to continuously be straight.
Thomas Orthodontics is here to help minimize the effects of your teeth shifting out of position after your braces are removed, and together we can ensure your teeth settle into their new positions for good. If something ever seems off, get in touch so we can address any issues head on.