Life with Braces in Stafford, VA

Orthodontic treatment like braces is a great way to develop a healthier, stronger smile. After all, issues related to jaw and tooth placement can have lasting effects on oral wellness, especially if the teeth are more prone to damage.

When you are adjusting to life with braces, don’t be afraid to ask our office in Stafford, VA, about any questions you might have. The biggest change for many is that you need to be more conscious and aware of how you clean your teeth and the types of foods you eat.

Better Hygiene

The greatest adjustment for many is needing to be more careful about brushing, flossing, and otherwise cleaning your teeth with the wires and brackets in place. It is easy for plaque to become trapped and start to erode your enamel, causing decay and discoloration. When brushing your teeth, follow these steps for the best results:

  • Brush after each meal or snack. Rinse your mouth with water if you can’t
  • Use a fluoride toothpaste and a soft brush
  • Brush around each bracket and tooth to get all of the nooks and crannies
  • Use a floss threader to floss your teeth each night

You can tell when you are doing a good job brushing and flossing because your brackets will stay clean and shiny.

Diet Adjustments

Besides proper oral hygiene, you might have difficulty changing your diet to suit your orthodontics. Unfortunately, some foods are difficult to eat with braces and can disrupt the structure or become easily trapped in the brackets and wires. When wearing braces, avoid the following foods and beverages:

  • Hard foods like nuts, apples, popcorn, ice, and hard candy
  • Caramel
  • Gummy candy
  • Chewing gum
  • Corn on the cob
  • Ribs
  • Chicken wings
  • Licorice
  • Chewy bread like bagels or French bread

Conclusion

These two adjustments can seem like a lot when you first begin your life with braces, but they are easy to manage after a couple of days. If you have any questions about what you can do or how to better take care of your smile, simply contact James E. Lupi, DDS, in Stafford today.

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