It’s the big day – time to get your braces off! Your orthodontist takes off the brackets, you turn to the mirror and see… oh no. It looks like someone just took the pictures off the wall in an old, old house. Stains!
This is a nightmare we don’t want any of our Atlanta patients to ever have to go through! Brushing completely around braces is tough, and many patients notice that their teeth become slightly stained during braces treatment. But we’ve got some tips to help you ward off braces stains so you get the gleaming, white smile you want the day your braces come off!
1. Brush more than usual
Before you got braces, you were probably brushing in the morning and at night. Usually, that’s enough to keep your teeth clean and healthy (when you throw in a flossing a day). But when you have braces, it’s best to brush after every single meal. Each bursting is less effective when you’re wearing braces, you’ve got to pick up the slack with more frequent brushing. Brushing often will help you avoid stains and plaque build-up around your brackets.
2. Skip foods that stain
Staying away from drinks like coffee and tea and condiments like mustard and ketchup can go a long way toward preventing stains when you have braces. If you must drink a staining beverage, at least use a straw. We understand that it’s very difficult to give up foods and drinks that you love. But remember, this is only temporary!
3. Don’t use whitening toothpaste
It might seem counterintuitive to avoid whitening toothpaste while trying to avoid stains, but it really is a good idea. Using whitening toothpaste while wearing braces can cause the tooth surface around the bracket to become lighter than the tooth surface underneath the bracket – leading to dark spots in the center of your teeth.
4. Use floss and mouthwash
Your toothbrush isn’t going to be as effective when you’re wearing braces, so just like our advice to brush more often, we also advise our orthodontic patients in Sandy Springs, Buckhead, College Park and other area of Atlanta kick up their flossing and mouthwash use. Where brushes can’t reach, very likely, floss can – and mouthwash definitely can! The cleaner your teeth stay, the less likely you’ll see stains when your braces come off.
5. Have regular dental cleanings
Even when you do your absolute best to keep your teeth clean while wearing braces, no one can clean your teeth better than your dental hygienist! Make sure you’re keeping all your regularly scheduled dental cleanings, which usually happen every six months. Your hygienist will be able to check your teeth for stains and may be able to remove some while your braces are still on – prepping you for a more exciting “braces off” day.
Ready for a gleaming Atlanta smile?
Atlanta Orthodontic Specialists helps people all over Atlanta, Sandy Springs, Buckhead, College Park, and Howell Mill achieve straight, gorgeous smiles. If you or your child are ready to start the braces journey, schedule your appointment to come see us today.