Everybody knows that you need to brush and floss your teeth well to keep them in good shape. Modern diets contain a lot of sugar which leads to decay in teeth if the bacterial plaque (that gooey stuff on your teeth and gums that builds up if you don’t brush well) is not cleaned away frequently (at least twice a day). Decay in teeth is caused by a combination of the gooey plaque and sugar. The gooey plaque eats the sugar and excretes acid which eats away at your teeth causing cavities, tooth pain and if left unchecked, eventually loss of teeth.

Orthodontic braces/appliances increase the retention of gooey plaque. There are more nooks and crannies for the plaque to accumulate. Left unchecked plaque can cause permanent white scars on your teeth.

Therefore, you need to be diligent in your tooth brushing and flossing of your gums, teeth, T-Rex, Penguin, Herbst, RPE and/or braces. The ChapmanSmiles Team spends special time with you going over the particular care required at the time of delivery and at each and every appointment if plaque is noticed . We want you to be successful in your efforts to keep your teeth and gums clean and healthy.

Studies show that teeth move faster and are more comfortable in a clean and healthy environment, one without gooey plaque. The problem is that the gums swell, turn red and get sore when they are not cleaned regularly. The swelling, redness and soreness (gingivitis) slows down tooth movement, increasing your time in braces. No one wants that!

We have a couple of sayings at ChapmanSmiles regarding brushing your teeth:

If it hurts, brush it more: A sore spot in your mouth(gums), is an area crying for attention from you and your toothbrush. Usually, as you begin to “attack” that area with your toothbrush, it will bleed (pink toothbrush) and be sore. Over the next few days, the “pink” disappears and so does the soreness. If you look, the gums are no longer red, but a nice light pink, a sign of health.

Time spent with a waterpik is better spent with a toothbrush: The mechanical debriding action of a brush is well documented and the best way to spend your time and be effective. Waterpiks flush away large chunks of debris, but don’t work on the gooey plaque very well.

Keeping your teeth and gums clean and healthy will help your orthodontic treatment finish on time with a great result with less discomfort!

Stay tuned for our next blog: Wear your elastics as prescribed

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