The Negative Impact of Poor Oral Hygiene
Your teeth and smile will be straighter and healthier thanks to orthodontic care, but braces don’t fight against stains or decay. That’s why we stress the importance of brushing and flossing when you have braces. As long as you maintain good oral hygiene habits, you’ll have a radiant smile. In severe cases of gum disease or other oral health problems, we may even have to remove your braces, wait for your gums and mouth to heal, and then reapply them. Here’s what we want to avoid:
Decalcifications, sometimes called “white spots,” are permanent stains around your braces that come from poor oral hygiene. Lines and spots from decalcification remain on your teeth for life. The best way to avoid them? Don’t let them develop at all. Brushing and flossing are key!
Gingivitis, also called gum disease, is the first stage of periodontal disease. It’s usually painless, but signs like bleeding when brushing, or swollen and puffy gums are indicators that you have it. This happens when plaque builds up around the gumline, so make sure to massage your gums lightly when you brush, and floss thoroughly.
If untreated, gingivitis can lead to periodontitis, infection and inflammation in the gums that spreads to the ligaments and bone that support the teeth. The gums start to pull away, forming gaps or pockets between your teeth that allow more plaque to accumulate.