Friday, April 9, 2021

Protect Your Enamel

Braces provide patients with a spectacular tool for straightening smiles and correcting jaw problems that impact self-confidence and overall oral wellness. Your wires and brackets are fundamental to the treatment process, but they also can make it difficult to remove food particles that get stuck under and between your brackets and wires. Unfortunately, if this food is left to fester, the acidic content of the food can eat away at your tooth’s vital tooth enamel.

If you have braces, your smile can be prone to enamel erosion. Enamel erosion occurs when acid attacks the teeth and wears down the enamel. This can make your teeth vulnerable to tooth fractures and cavities. Pay special attention to cleaning your teeth every day. Permanent damage to tooth enamel can occur if the teeth and brackets are not kept clean.

To prevent enamel erosion, Dr. Kelly encourages you to:

  • Avoid Acidic Foods and Beverages: Consuming acidic products can expose your smile to the acid that harms the teeth. So, it’s best to avoid consuming acidic foods and drinks as much as possible.
  • Keep Your Teeth Clean: This includes regular brushing, an interdental brush, floss (and floss threaders) and possibly a water flosser to help you use the force of water to rid your mouth of stuck debris.
  • Use Fluoride: Fluoride can strengthen your tooth enamel and help you avoid enamel erosion. Use a fluoride toothpaste and fluoride mouthwash whenever possible.

When it comes to taking care of your teeth with braces, one of the best things you can do is pay attention to what you are putting in your mouth. Thinking about what is coming in contact with your pearly whites can protect your teeth from erosion and decay.

Certain foods and beverages are more acidic than others. During orthodontic treatment, focus on eating foods that are both good for your body and your teeth.

Less tooth-friendly foods and drinks include: apples, cherries, oranges, peaches, pears, plums, pineapples, raspberries, tomatoes, pickles, soft drinks, and fruit drinks.

More tooth-friendly foods and drinks include: bananas, mangoes, melons, carrots, cucumbers, lettuce, milk, water, meat, poultry, seafood, eggs, crackers, and pasta.

If you like to learn more about how you prevent enamel erosion while wearing braces, our friendly staff at Kelly Orthodontics is available to train you in methods for keeping your teeth clean and strong. Please reach out to our orthodontic team at 630-584-9666. We look forward to talking with you!

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