Food in My Braces – Oh NO! | Jones Orthodontics

LWMJanFeb2015-smallfinal_Page_17What can I eat and how do I Keep My Braces Clean?

Included in the orthodontic home care kit that we give every patient is a bilevel toothbrush, a travel toothbrush, a spiral brush, relief wax, a small mirror, floss, some floss threaders and a fluoride rinse. Along with this kit we give our patients an orthodontic diet chart that lists foods which may promote tooth decay when eaten by a person who is wearing braces. We also want to make sure that you schedule regular visits with your personal team of dental health professionals, your dentist, your dental hygienist and your orthodontist to keep your orthodontic treatment on track and to keep your hygiene at a level that keeps you from getting dental disease or tooth decay.

Dental disease (also known as tooth decay) is the destruction of tooth enamel along with the inflammation of the supporting tissues surrounding the teeth. It begins with a soft sticky film containing bacteria called plaque. This sticky film of bacteria lives in your mouth and thrives on foods such as sugars and starches. After eating, the plaque produces acids that destroy tooth enamel resulting in tooth decay. Over a longer period of time this same
bacteria causes gum disease or (periodontal disease).

After eating, the plaque becomes acidic and dissolves tooth enamel. In the early stages of tooth decay (white spot lesion) this can often be repressed with the help of fluoride toothpastes and topically applied fluoride rinses. However if enough enamel is lost, the tooth surface will break down forming a cavity otherwise known as tooth decay. Cavities can only be repaired by your dentist.

Periodontal disease is the infection of the surrounding tissues of the teeth: Periodontal disease is caused by plaque, the sticky film of bacteria that constantly forms on your teeth. This bacteria creates toxins that damage gum tissues by causing them to become inflamed and bleed. If the plaque is not removed it can harden and become calculus (tartar).

To keep your teeth and gums healthy, we recommend that our patients follow the suggestions on the diet chart and schedule a visit to their dentist once every three months for a prophylaxis (teeth cleaning). February is Dental Health Month. During this month I will be out in the community doing (free) dental exams in some of our local elementary schools.

If you or your family have not been to the dentist lately, it would be a good month to schedule an appointment.

Remember , take your child to the dentist at 3 years of age and to the orthodontist at 7 years of age.

By John H. Jones III DDS
Jones Orthodontics
703-421-0893
Jones4smiles.com

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