How To Maintain Your Smile After Braces

For years, Cowan and Whitaker Orthodontics have been creating beautiful smiles. You have worked so hard during your treatment. Let’s work together to keep that beautiful smile. Below are our recommendations. Keep up the excellent work! 

Keep those pearly whites clean!

A beautiful smile starts with clean teeth. Proper brushing and flossing keep your teeth and supporting gum tissue healthy and vibrant. Consider implementing the following practices into your routine. 

  • Brush immediately after each meal.  
  • Invest in a toothbrush with soft bristles.
  • Use only fluoride toothpaste. 
  • Brush gently. There’s no need to scour your gums. 
  • Hold your brush at approximately a 45-degree angle. 
  • Make a point to touch your bristles to every surface of every tooth.
  • Can’t brush right this second? Use water and swish. 
  • The floss is the boss! Employ it every night before going to sleep. 
  • Trouble accessing certain parts of your mouth or teeth? Look into tools like Waterpiks and threaders. 
  • Get a new toothbrush every quarter (roughly every 3 – 4 months). 
  • When selecting mouthwash, look for words like “antimicrobial.” 
How To Maintain Your Smile After Braces

Keep your teeth straight! 

After Dr. Cowan or Dr. Whitaker remove your braces, they will fit you with a retainer. Braces help make your teeth straight, and retainers help keep them straight. Teeth tend to move with time, and retainers help control this movement. Poor retainer wear will likely result in undesired movement and may require additional treatment to correct.

Dr. Cowan and Dr. Whitaker use two types of retainers. 

  • Fixed retainers are attached to the back of the front teeth.
  • Clear removable retainers 

You should brush your retainer every day! Sometimes life gets in the way. It might slip your mind here and there. For the most part, that shouldn’t cause any significant problems. But pay attention to your retainer. Look at it and inspect it after waking up and before bed. If it’s discolored or cloudy, it needs to be cleaned. If you observe a foul taste or smell, then it’s time for a cleaning. 

Protect your teeth! 

A study published in Sports Health by Young, et al. indicated that the most common dental injuries in sports were: 

  • Tooth and crown fractures 
  • Intrusion: a tooth is driven deeper into its socket, and the bones beneath it 
  • Extrusion: a tooth displaced out of its socket 
  • Avulsion: a tooth completely knocked out of its socket 
  • Temporomandibular joint dislocation: part of the jaw bone moves out of proper placement 

The best way to prevent these injuries is to wear a mouthguard while playing non-contact sports such as baseball and softball. Mouthguards slip over the teeth and cushion them from blows and shock while you play. For that reason, mouthguards can substantially reduce the risk of dental injuries. Talk with Dr. Cowan or Dr. Whitaker to learn more about mouthguard options. 

How To Maintain Your Smile After Braces

Reach Out To Cowan and Whitaker 

Still have questions about caring for your teeth after braces? Visit us here to schedule a free consult.

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