Oral Hygiene

Dental Decay

Dental decay is a common complication in orthodontic treatment. Carious lesions are difficult to find increasing the risk of dental decay. Also, resting pH is lowered leading to an increase in bacterial flora, thereby increasing dental plaque.

Orthodontists have minimal success in the treatment of white spot lesions due to lack of oral hygiene. Excellent oral hygiene is imperative to avoid this problem.

A combination of proper diet and good tooth brushing will decrease bacteria growth and infections or white spot lesions. Brushing after eating, utilizing the proper technique of brushing, and rinsing vigorously with water will help prevent decay. During braces treatment, soda drinks, sports drinks, and other acidic drinks are to be strictly eliminated.

Best Practices During Treatment

Oral hygiene depends on the age of the patient on whether they will be compliant with the regimen they have to do when they have braces or any other dental appliance. Children emulate their parents and other adults. If you show them how to maintain a regimen of good oral hygiene they will most often follow your lead without reminders or arguments to fulfill their promise to keep their braces, teeth, and appliances clean.

Now adults are another story. Most often they will do as they are instructed and follow a good regimen of good oral hygiene. But the few that do not do as instructed do not get the smile they want. We will try to work with them to get them back on track, but again we can only show them the poor results of non-compliance with oral hygiene. Typically that is enough to get them on track again.