Braces and the Need to See a Dentist
Chattanooga & Signal Mountain, TN
Braces are a common treatment for correcting poorly aligned teeth and jaws, helping you or your child to achieve your most beautiful smile. While wearing braces, regular orthodontic follow-ups are required for adjustments. At Sawrie Orthodontics, many of our orthodontic patients wonder if they still need to see their regular dentist for their regular 6-month checkups. The answer to this question is yes, it is still essential that you have your regular cleanings and exams performed while wearing braces.
Why Do I Need to See My Regular Dentist?
Even though you see us for regular orthodontic adjustments, it is still essential that you see your regular dentist for regular cleanings and exams. Oral hygiene can be more difficult when you have braces. The brackets and wires provide ideal hiding places for plaque, bacteria, food particles, and other debris. Even if you brush and floss every day, there may be areas that go untouched, greatly increasing your risk for developing decay, cavities, decalcification, and gum disease. Regular dental visits are crucial for ensuring that all buildup is removed from your teeth to help keep your teeth and gums healthy during your orthodontic treatment.
The Role of Your General Dentist
Your regular, or general, dentist is your primary oral care provider. They are your go-to when you need cleanings and exams or when you need an oral health issue diagnosed. They can also refer you to a specialist if necessary. Essentially, the role of your regular dentist does not change much while you are undergoing treatment with braces. They are still the one you go to for routine cleanings and exams, if you need a cavity filled, or if you need a root canal.
How Often Do I Need to Go?
Just like before you received your braces, you should continue to see your regular dentist every six months. These routine cleanings and exams are designed to help you maintain optimal oral health at all times. Cleanings are performed to eliminate buildup from the surfaces of your teeth to prevent serious oral health issues. Your exams are performed to detect the early signs of oral health issues, often before you even notice anything is wrong. If we do notice an issue, we can provide treatment before it becomes something more serious.
With More Dental Visits, Do I Need to Brush and Floss as Much?
Sure, you see us for your orthodontic adjustments, and you see your regular dentist for cleanings and exams, but more dental visits do not mean that you can brush and floss your teeth any less. In fact, you should be much more diligent with your oral care at home while you are wearing braces.
Brackets and wires provide ideal hiding places for plaque, bacteria, and food particles. Brushing and flossing every day, and doing so properly, is crucial for preventing serious issues during your orthodontic treatment. You should be brushing your teeth at least twice a day, also ideally after every meal, and you should be flossing at least once a day. An all-around good oral hygiene routine is essential for keeping your teeth and gums healthy before, during, and after treatment with braces. Read more about oral hygiene with braces and how to keep your braces protected.
Regular dental visits and proper oral care are essential for maintaining your oral health during your orthodontic treatment. If you have any questions or concerns, call Sawrie Orthodontics at (423) 624-8217 today!