After putting in the time and money to perfect your smile with braces, it just makes sense to do all you can to protect your investment. Without taking the right steps, your teeth could start to shift back into their prior positions, putting you right back at square one. Cavities, stains, and even tooth loss also threaten to keep you from flashing that gorgeous smile wherever you go. Thankfully, there are plenty of things you can do to protect your smile and your investment — starting the second you get your braces removed.
Enjoy Your Favorite Foods, But…
Remember all those foods you couldn’t eat with braces on? Well, now you can! But that doesn’t mean you can just have a free for all without the risk of consequences. Eating too many sticky, sugary snacks can still result in cavities even if you brush and floss right on schedule.
If you want to keep your cavity risk at an all time low, you may need to save the sugar for special occasions. But, if you just can’t wait, then at least commit to rinsing your mouth out after chowing down on your favorite snacks.
A quick rinse with water removes the food particles, keeping them from feeding all those cavity-causing bacteria. So, it’s a good idea after eating any type of food, though it goes double for sugar.
Wearing Your Retainer is a Must
When it comes down to it, teeth are rather stubborn. Even after spending what likely felt like eons in braces, teeth are prone to migrating right back into their previous positions. Although this happens a millimeter at a time, if you are not paying attention, it could leave you right back where you started.
Luckily, you can fight back against their tendency to migrate by simply wearing your retainer day and night. To avoid what’s otherwise inevitable, you have to pop that retainer in right after getting your braces off. That move will keep pressure on your teeth to stay put, keeping your stunning smile just how you like it.
Once the periodontal membrane stabilizes, which takes about 10 months, you can talk to your dentist about wearing your retainer less often. Even then, you will likely need to wear it at least at night to remind your teeth just who’s in charge here.
Nothing feels better than flashing your smile all around town and showing off the results of your dedication to straightening your teeth. Unfortunately, stains from coffee, fruit juice, and much more can take the spring out of your step in an instant. You do not have to let a few little stains derail your day, however, since teeth whitening is quick, easy, and often quite affordable.
Since your teeth will feel a bit sensitive after getting your braces removed, it is best to wait a couple months before going in for a whitening session. But after that, you can put whitening on the schedule and keep stains from detracting from your bright smile. You can likely come in once a year after the initial session for a quick touch up to keep stains from setting in.
Timely Dental Checkups Help Retain Your Flashy Smile
Although you might feel like you put in more than your fair share of time in the dental chair, checkups need to remain on the schedule. At your checkups, your dentist will shine up your teeth, helping keep them white and plaque free at all sides.
During the cleaning, your dentist will make sure you are flossing with the best of them plus check for cavities, tooth migration, and all those other pesky problems. They can even help troubleshoot problems with your oral care routine, such as perfecting your brushing technique or offering alternatives to traditional floss.
So, schedule your visits as recommended by your dentist, likely landing in the dental chair at least twice a year. You may need to come in more often if your dentist feels like you have trouble spots to watch more carefully.
Share Your Smile Far and Wide to Celebrate Your Hard Work
After getting your braces off and committing to the work ahead, nothing is more rewarding than flashing your smile with confidence everywhere you go. With your smile, you will undoubtedly light up every room and spread the joy far and wide. Just make sure to put those dental appointments on the schedule and take care of your teeth each and every day to keep your smile bright. You will likely need to call early to get in on time, so reach out today to schedule your visits.
At Laster Orthodontics, we help families develop healthy, life-changing smiles using customized treatments, cutting-edge technologies, and caring relationships. Our individualized treatment plans help our patients achieve their perfect smile in the quickest, most painless way possible by utilizing a wide range of options from traditional braces to propel accelerated treatment to Dr. Laster’s in-house aligner program, Laster Perfect Smile. With three locations throughout the Triangle Area, we create life-changing smiles every day.