How to Clean Retainers – Tips from Orthodontist in Lawrenceville

You are probably celebrating your new smile after completing your initial orthodontic treatment. Now that your braces are off, your orthodontist will get customized retainers designed for you, which you will have to wear for a year or so to ensure that your teeth do not shift back to their previous positions. Although you are allowed to remove your retainer when drinking, eating, or attending a social event, it needs to be cleaned regularly to maintain good oral hygiene.

How to Clean Your Retainers

There are various types of cleaning products available for cleaning retainers. Let’s discuss some of the best options here:

  1. Water
  2. Using water to clean your retainers is one of the best cleaning solutions. Follow these tips:

    • Washing your retainers while brushing your teeth discourages the growth of bacteria. You can also swish some water in your mouth a few times if your retainer feels dirty.
    • Do not allow retainers to dry out as they become more prone to damage. Soak them in distilled water every time you take them out. If you do not have a container to soak them in, or if the retainer is dirty and you cannot clean it right away, you can soak it in a damp paper towel.
    • Your retainer case needs to be cleaned regularly too. Clean it once a day before you put the retainer away. Use warm soapy water to gently scrub the surfaces, rinse it off and pat to dry.

  3. Baking Soda
  4. Baking soda is a natural disinfectant, and it is an effective substance for cleaning retainers. Follow these steps:

    • Make a paste by mixing equal amounts of baking soda and water. The paste should be thick enough to stick to your retainer.
    • Apply the paste onto the retainer with the help of a soft toothbrush. Brush gently and rinse it thoroughly with water to remove any residue.

    Soaking your trays in a baking soda and water solution whitens the retainers that may have turned yellowish, gets rid of bacteria, and maintains the pH balance in your mouth.

  5. Vinegar
  6. White vinegar is also a natural disinfectant. Use these steps to clean retainers with vinegar:

    • Combine equal parts of water and vinegar in a bowl or dish.
    • Soak your retainer for at least 20 minutes in the solution.

    Soaking your retainers in a vinegar and water solution removes calcium and mineral deposits on the retainers and also eliminates odors and bacteria.

  7. Castile Soap
  8. Castile soap is a safe and effective way to clean retainers.

    It is easy to make your own castile soap solution. You just have to mix coconut oil with olive oil. You can also buy castile soap from the store near you. Follow these steps:

    • Mix a small amount of castile soap with warm water.
    • Soak the retainer into the mixture.
    • Use a soft toothbrush to scrub it.
    • Ensure that you rinse your retainer with water before putting it back in your mouth.
    • Repeat the process as often as necessary.

  9. Retainer Cleaner
  10. If you do not have the time or desire to make your own retainer cleaning solution, you can buy retainer cleaners from the store. Follow the instructions given on the packaging. Your orthodontist will be able to recommend a retainer cleaner that is best for you.

How NOT to Clean Your Retainer

Many people do not practice the correct methods for cleaning their retainers. This can be a costly mistake because it can cause damage to your retainers. Do not make the following cleaning mistakes:

  1. Mouthwash:
  2. Anything that contains alcohol is not good for your retainers. And mouthwash has alcohol. It is less effective in cleaning the retainers, and it also dries out your retainers, making them more prone to damage.

  3. Toothpaste:
  4. It’s great for cleaning your teeth, but not your retainers. Toothpaste contains abrasive compounds that are good for scrubbing your enamel clean. Your enamel is tough and can handle it. But if you use toothpaste to clean your retainers, it will damage the delicate materials of your retainer.

  5. Cleaning Agents:
  6. Household cleaning agents, such as bleach, are too harsh on something that would go back into your mouth. The harsh chemicals in cleaning agents get absorbed by the retainer and dry it out.

  7. Denture Cleaners:
  8. Denture cleaners are sometimes used as retainer cleaners, but they are not the same. Many of the dental cleaners contain persulfate, a chemical labeled as an allergen by the FDA. Dental cleaners can remove the buildup, but they can also cause damage to your retainer. If you continue using denture cleaners as retainer cleaners, they can change the color of your retainer. Use only as an emergency solution.

  9. Soda:
  10. Carbonated drinks like cola are effective cleaners on different materials but definitely not on retainers. Using these drinks to clean retainers is a great way to create a breeding ground for bacteria in your mouth.

  11. Extreme Heat:
  12. Boiling retainer in water will distort the shape of your retainer. In fact, the water doesn’t even need to be boiling to change the shape of the soft materials used in your retainer. The distorted shape of the retainer affects the way it interacts and guides your teeth.

    Retainer Cleaning Myths

    Some of the common retainer cleaning myths that you should not believe are:

    • Retainers are clean as long as you brush your teeth regularly and take them off when eating.
    • Retainer cleaners or cleaning solutions are bad for your teeth and your retainer.
    • If you are taking probiotics and other supplements, they keep your mouth and retainer healthy without cleaning them.
    • You need good bacteria on your retainer. And cleaning the retainer destroys these good bacteria.

    Final Thoughts

    Your retainer goes into your mouth and is in direct contact with your teeth. If it is not cleaned, it can cause bacterial growth, plaque, and tartar buildup in your teeth. Therefore, it is important to keep your retainer clean and odor-free, and it is equally important to know how to properly clean your retainer.

    If you need more information on how to clean your retainers or if you are thinking about orthodontic treatment, contact Koch Orthodontist, your orthodontistin Lawrenceville.

Teeth After Braces: How to Make the Best of Your Orthodontic Treatment

You’ve finally paid your dues for the perfect smile — after years of wearing braces, they’ve finally come off, and you’re ready to show off your pearly whites to the whole world.

But wait, there are a lot of things that have changed with your teeth and you’ll be able to see the difference with braces before and after the orthodontic treatment. This article is a guide to what you should expect after the completion of your orthodontic treatment.

What to Expect After Braces Removal?

It’s understandable that you’re excited that your braces have come off, but the removal of braces doesn’t complete the orthodontic treatment; there’s some part of it that’s still left. Here are a few things that you need to consider after your braces treatment:

  • Dietary Restrictions
  • After you get the braces off, the teeth enamel is exposed, because of which your teeth might be sensitive for some time. While your teeth are still adjusting to their new braces-free positions, you must stay away from eating crunchy or chewy foods.
  • Teeth Whitening
  • Now that you have the perfect smile, you also want your teeth to look pearly white. If you are considering getting whitening treatments done, wait a month or two after the removal of your braces because your teeth are still sensitive.
  • Wearing a Retainer
  • Once your braces are removed, your orthodontist might suggest that you wear a retainer. A retainer after braces treatment is necessary so that your teeth don’t shift back to being misaligned. Retainers after braces help stabilize your bones and teeth after the active orthodontic treatment.
There are two classes of retainers:
  • Removable retainers that can be taken out when you are eating your meals.
  • Bonded retainers that are attached to your teeth and can’t be removed.

Generally, orthodontists will require you to wear your retainers a few months after your braces treatment is completed. Your retainer is going to be customized for your mouth and hence should be quite comfortable. Even though you might experience minor difficulties in speaking at first, the initial discomfort will go away after you get used to them.

How to Care for Your Retainers?

If you have bonded retainers, you need to follow the same strict oral hygiene routine you did when you had the braces: brush, floss, and rinse with mouthwash after every meal.

For a removable retainer, you need to brush and clean your retainer every morning and night. You can either soak them in denture cleaning solutions, or vinegar and water. Don’t use toothpaste to clean clear retainers as they become clouded, and never boil or microwave clean retainers.

How Long Does a Retainer Last?

The life of retainers after braces depends on how well you take care of them. They need to be replaced periodically, according to the instructions given by your orthodontist.

Overall Dental Care After Braces Removal

Your orthodontist will schedule a dental exam and cleaning after your braces are removed. This exam is done to check for the changes in your teeth before and after braces treatment and to ensure that no other dental issues have cropped up because of braces.

The orthodontist will also clean your teeth to get rid of any build-up of plaque that might have occurred because of braces (since it’s hard to clean your teeth when you have braces).

One of the most important things to keep in mind is that you should keep up with a strict oral hygiene routine before and after braces have come off. If you have any questions about retainers or what happens post braces treatment, contact a family orthodontist at Koch Orthodontics.

5 Reasons You Need Teeth Retainer After Braces

Your braces are finally coming off, and you can’t wait to show your new, straight teeth to everyone. But, the orthodontic treatment hasn’t come to an end. After taking off the braces, you need to put on a retainer to make sure the teeth stay in the new positions. Let us learn more about what are retainers and how they benefit you.

2 Types of Retainers


  1. Removable Retainers
  2. This is generally a combination of a wire that goes across the front of the upper and lower teeth. It is attached to an acrylic material and hooks that you can insert in and around the teeth to hold it in place. The wires of the removable retainers can be adjusted to continue the slight movement of the teeth if it is required.

  3. Fixed Retainers
  4. These consist of a thin wire that is bonded behind the bottom or front teeth, or both. Since this wire stretches across several teeth, brushing and flossing will be similar to teeth braces care. Use a floss threader to access the interproximal spaces between the teeth.

    Fixed retainers have the best outcome as the bonded wire can hold the newly straight teeth in the ideal alignment over a long period.

Why Is It Important to Use Retainer After Braces?


  1. The Bite Needs to be Stabilized
  2. After the braces are removed, the bone and soft tissues will need time to adapt to the changes made in the tooth positioning. The retainers help in stabilizing teeth in a new arrangement and ensures that the shifting or relapse of teeth is minimal.

    Wear retainer braces for at least 12-22 hours every day for at least two months to prevent relapse of the teeth.

  3. Right Spacing for Wisdom Teeth
  4. Dental braces are common in teenagers and preteens. As their bodies are still developing, they would have to use the retainers around the time when their wisdom teeth erupt.

    By using the retainers as instructed, the teens can maintain the space required in their jaw to accommodate the wisdom teeth. Regular use of retainers makes sure that the teeth do not crowd or shift due to a lack of space.

  5. To Hold Teeth in New Positions
  6. If you got dental braces to fix gaps in the teeth, severely misaligned teeth or overbite and underbite, it would take a long time to stabilize. Therefore, it is important to hold the teeth in place even after the braces are removed.

    Orthodontic retainers will help in doing that and ensure that the teeth are repositioned firmly in their new spaces till the mouth can adapt to the changes.

  7. To Avoid Treatment Reversal
  8. The teeth will tend to move back into their old positions in the months after the braces are removed.

    It is possible to prevent this teeth reversal by using the teeth retainers. It is a good idea to wear the retainers for a few months after the dental braces are removed.

  9. Helps with Speech Impediments
  10. If you have difficulty saying certain words due to the placement of teeth, a retainer can help in forming the sounds correctly. They can also correct a speech impediment called tongue thrust where the tongue finds its way through the teeth when you talk. You can use a special retainer called a tongue cage to prevent this. It will further guide the mouth with the correct pronunciation.

    If you need to put a retainer, contact a family orthodontist at Koch Orthodontics. We will help you choose the right retainer to make sure the treatment proceeds as planned.

7 Effective Ways to Prevent Bad Breath with Braces (That Actually Work)

Getting braces will fix your crooked teeth, but it can be a big change in your mouth and your daily routine. In the beginning, you can face a few issues until you adjust to the braces. One common issue can be bad breath, which can be embarrassing. In this article, we will discuss what causes bad breath with braces and how you can tackle it.

What Causes Bad Breath with Braces?


One of the main causes of bad breath is bacteria in the mouth.

The food may get stuck between the braces or spaces around the teeth. If you are unable to remove these food particles, bacteria will start feeding on it. This will produce an unpleasant odor.

Other reasons for bad breath include gum disease, poor oral hygiene, drinking, and smoking.

7 Ways to Prevent Bad Breath While Wearing Braces


  1. Brush and Floss Regularly
  2. Oral hygiene is important when you have dental braces. You need to brush in the morning, night, and after a meal. If the bad breath persists after brushing twice a day, you may want to increase the frequency of brushing and flossing.

    Use a threader to floss your teeth to remove food particles from small spaces where the toothbrush cannot reach.

  3. Use Antibacterial Mouthwash
  4. After you brush and floss, use an antibacterial mouthwash to avoid bad breath with braces. It will get into the space between the teeth and kills germs and bacteria. If you have a sensitive mouth, use a mouthwash that doesn’t burn.

    If you want to go natural, add a few drops of tea tree oil and peppermint oil in water along with baking soda. This concoction doesn’t burn at all and is antibacterial. It will kill the bacteria and disinfect the mouth.

  5. Stay Hydrated
  6. A dry mouth reduces the production of saliva, which further harbors an ideal environment for bacteria to thrive. Dehydration will increase the chances of bad breath.

    Drink lots of water throughout the day to prevent dehydration. It will keep your mouth clean and prevent the growth of bacteria.

  7. Eat the Right Foods
  8. Another bad breath remedy is to avoid foods with strong-smelling ingredients like garlic. Choose the right foods to eat with braces. Avoid sugary and sticky foods as they will lead to bad oral health. It may further lead to tooth decay and bad breath.

  9. Use Breath Mints
  10. If you have bad breath after following all the oral hygiene habits, you can use breath mints temporarily. Avoid breath-freshening gum as it may stick to the braces. You can use the mints till your mouth gets adjusted to the new oral hygiene habits. It is a common bad breath cure but doesn’t rely on it completely to get rid of the bad breath.

  11. Use a Water Pick
  12. A water pick is excellent for cleaning between the gums and teeth braces, and teeth and gums. They can even reach the hard to reach places where bacteria can grow. They use powerful jets of water to clean the teeth, and they are more effective than a toothbrush.

  13. Regular Orthodontic Visits
  14. It is important to schedule regular dental appointments when you have teeth straightening braces to get your teeth cleaned. It will also help the dentist identify any issue that may lead to bad breath. You can ensure that your teeth and gums stay healthy during and after the orthodontic treatment.

    If you have any questions about how to keep your breath fresh while having braces, visit a family orthodontist. Call us at Koch Orthodontics to make an appointment. You can also learn about the orthodontic treatment process too.

Experiences You Will Have After Braces Removal

Are you looking forward to the day when your braces will finally come off? If you have been having braces for quite a long time, you might have forgotten how it would feel without them.

But what happens when the braces come off? Will your mouth feel any different?

Here are the few things you will experience after braces removal:

Straighter Teeth

You’ll notice that your teeth are perfectly straight after braces removal. Not only will your smile be perfect, but you can avert a host of problems that come with misaligned teeth.

Eat Your Favorite Foods

Your favorite foods, apples, corn, hard candy, can make a come back in your diet. You can chew gum again, without worrying about food getting stuck in your braces.

Easier to Chew Food

Having misaligned jaws means it might have been more difficult to chew food. After braces removal, you will see how significantly easier it is to chew food.

Easier to Clean Teeth

Your oral hygiene routine will get easier after braces removal. You don’t need to religiously clean the surface of your tooth and floss between your teeth once your braces are off. And it will be easier to clean the entire surface of your teeth without using special equipment for it.

Discoloration

Wearing braces for such a long time can mean that your teeth have stained and turned a little yellow. Now that your braces are off, you might need to get your teeth whitened, and after your braces removal, you can.

Mouth Calluses

Wearing braces for years can cause calluses on the insides of your mouth and lips. One of the first things that you will notice after the brackets are off is that you have sensitive skin and calluses where you had braces. Calluses first develop when you first get braces, but then you stop noticing till the braces come off. But don’t worry, these go off fairly quickly.

Tender Teeth

Teeth become a bit sensitive after braces come on. When you get your braces off, your orthodontist has to use some force to get the braces and glue out of your mouth, leaving your teeth and gums a bit tender.

So while you are free to eat what you please now, stay away from hard foods for a few days after your braces removal.

Follow-Ups

Getting your braces removed might not mean your treatment is over. You might need to wear a retainer after braces indefinitely at night to prevent teeth from falling back to the same position. Sometimes you need to wear the retainers for a few nights only. It depends on your orthodontist.

Additional Treatment

You might need other additional orthodontic treatment other than braces. You might need additional help with other issues like spacers, partial braces, or retainers.

Settling

After braces removal, there is a time period where teeth take time to settle. Sometimes without wires and brackets to hold them in place, teeth might still shift. This is a temporary phase called settling and can be handled with retainers.

Smooth Tooth Surface

Now you can enjoy the smooth surface of your teeth without the additional baggage of metal wires and braces.

No More Wire Tightening

After braces removal, you don’t have to visit the orthodontist to get your braces tightened every month.

Better Sleep

Jaw misalignment or crooked teeth causes numerous jaw problems. One of them includes bruxism, i.e., grinding teeth at night. After your teeth straightening braces, you will experience almost no jaw pain because of bruxism.

Improved Speech

Braces shift teeth to the proper position to improve speech impediments that might have been caused because of misaligned teeth.

Flaunt those Pearly Whites

Now everyone can notice your bright, braces-free smile, so make the most of it, and flash those pearly whites.

There are numerous permanent after-effects that come with braces removal. However, orthodontic treatment doesn’t end when braces come off.

For a worry-free orthodontist consultation, here at Koch Orthodontics, we care about your oral health. To request a consultation with an experienced orthodontist in Lawrenceville call (770) 962-950.

6 Orthodontic Products to Maintain Good Oral Hygiene with Braces

Getting a fresh new pair of braces is going to bring you one step closer to healthier teeth. A more aligned bite will solve speaking and chewing problems that you may currently face. But a braces treatment also requires you to keep up with an oral hygiene routine that keeps your new smile healthy.

Here’s a Look at the 6 Orthodontic Products You Should Use with Braces:


  1. Electric Toothbrush
  2. You might just need a toothbrush upgrade if you are not already using an electric toothbrush. Maybe you tried using it when you were a lot younger, but never understood the real benefits. An electric toothbrush cleans your mouth a lot more effectively as opposed to a regular toothbrush, especially if you wear braces.

    Braces require angular brushing to clean out debris and bacterial plaque, and the occasional stubborn stains. An electric toothbrush effectively eliminates that fuzzy feel in the mouth. An electric toothbrush also includes settings such as timers, ideal for people who brush incorrectly and not longer than a minute.

  3. Orthopick Flossers
  4. Flossing with braces does not have to be a painful and mind-numbing act. Orthopick flossers are designed to keep your oral hygiene in check when you have braces on. They easily slide between teeth and bracket wires to remove plaque buildup and food particles to keep your smile clean and fresh.

    It makes flossing with braces a breeze and is ideal for both adults and children. The better grip allows you to floss properly and eliminates the damage of bracket wires.

  5. Gum Soft Picks
  6. If you experience teeth sensitivity, then gum soft picks should be a part of your oral hygiene routine. They are designed to reach every little corner surrounding your braces to effectively eliminate plaque buildup and food debris. But note that they work like very soft toothpicks so they should be used in conjunction with flossing.

  7. Wisp
  8. A wisp is a single-use tiny disposable toothbrush that has an inbuilt freshening bead to keep your mouth clean and fresh. It’s discreet enough to be kept in your pocket or purse for times when your teeth need a mid-day teeth rinse.

  9. Fluoride Mouthwash
  10. Giving your mouth a regular water rinse is usually not enough. A fluoride mouthwash supplements daily brushing so that you are protected against tooth decay and cavities. To strengthen the enamel of your teeth and protect your teeth from acid damage, your mouth needs a stronger rinse.

    Use a mouthwash recommended by your dentist and follows the instructions they give you. Swish it gently during the first few weeks of having your braces on and gradually increase the intensity so that clean your mouth well.

  11. Orthodontic Relief Wax
  12. Wearing braces may come with a set of challenges that includes irritation to the gums. To prevent it, orthodontists often recommend using orthodontic wax to relive the irritated gum tissue. Since the wax is not visible, it easily blends with your braces for a clean smile. It flakes away with time and peels off to break down.

Braces often hurt since they are fastened tight onto your teeth. Keeping up with oral hygiene with braces on can be a bit of a hassle, especially if the pain does not subside. The soreness and discomfort may persist after each adjustment.

If the pain is absolutely unbearable, you can resort to over-the-counter pain relievers like Ibuprofen, Aspirin, Acetaminophen, or Naproxen. Visit your orthodontist for regular adjustments for braces and you may require professional cleaning for your teeth.

Here at Koch Orthodontics, we care about your oral and your overall health. We want to ensure that you get the best results out of your orthodontic treatment. To request a consultation with an experienced orthodontist in Lawrenceville call (770) 962-950.

World No Tobacco Day: Say No to Smoking with Braces

Smoking cigarettes are as such damaging to your health in a number of ways. But have you wondered what damage it could do to your oral health when you have braces on? Of course, you can smoke, but at Koch Orthodontics, we highly suggest that you avoid smoking with braces.

Every 1 in 5 adult Americans consume tobacco. 65 million adults suffer from gum disease, out of which half them smoke cigarettes. (Source: https://journals.sagepub.com/doi/abs/10.1177/0022034512457373)

Smoking and braces is recipe for disaster, it’s like bringing oil and water together. It simply doesn’t work. One of the biggest drawbacks of smoking with braces is the risk it puts on staining several teeth. You’re also increasing the risk of teeth stains that may not disappear that easily.

After all, who wants yellow teeth right after you have gotten them re-aligned? At Koch Orthodontics, we want you to have clean and bright teeth that are well aligned and ready for a close-up! But this simply can’t happen if you keep smoking.

Here’s a look at the effects of smoking with braces on your orthodontic treatment:

  • Prolonged Treatment Time
  • Smoking has a direct impact on the performance of orthodontic treatment. The nicotine content in a cigarette can develop stains on teeth and is especially if you have a set of clear braces on. In the worst cases, smoking can also prevent the ability of braces to properly align teeth.

    Smoking reduces your mouth’s chance to fight tooth decay simply because of the lack of saliva production. Saliva is especially important to drive out stubborn acid that sticks to out-of-reach spots in the mouth. And also reduces bacteria-generated plaque that often stays in the mouth if not encouraged to leave. This hassle only prolongs treatment time as minor adjustments and regular cleaning will have to be scheduled at regular intervals.

  • Extra Cleaning
  • Smoking will easily discolor your teeth. Your brackets and wires have a good chance of turning from pale to a darker yellow in no time! And it can be especially obvious if your choice of orthodontic treatment is clear braces. Stains from tobacco consumption affect your tooth enamel to a point where the stains cannot simply be removed even with regular brushing.

    Once your brackets are ready to be removed, your teeth have a chance of sustaining a light colored spot that suggests the surrounding area has been stained. The extra cleaning doesn’t can be heavy on your pocket as braces itself isn’t all that cheap an orthodontic treatment.

    But smoking stains on teeth are not the only oral health problem when you consume tobacco. Here’s a look at the other problems that smoking can pose on your teeth.

Other Oral Health Problems:

  • Gum Disease
  • Bacteria and food debris often trigger gum disease. If not removed from teeth, plaque hardens to form tartar or calculus. This buildup irritates the gums that surround the teeth. Smokers may not experience bleeding gums simply because of the lack of blood supply to the gums and this masks their gum disease.

    Smokers have a higher chance of developing gingivitis, strong and chronic pain in the gums, which tastes and smells terrible.

  • Bad Breath
  • Smokers are left with bad breath when smoke particles enter the throat and lungs. A freshly smoked cigarette lets the smell linger in the lungs for hours, which is why smokers sustain a stale scent in their breath.

  • Oral Cancer
  • Smokers make up 75% of people who suffer from oral cancer. Smokers are 35 times more likely to develop oral cancer if you smoke forty cigarettes and drink four alcoholic drinks per day. Oral cancer is more likely to start with the damage of the side of the tongue and the floor of the mouth. And it can be treated with the help of surgery, tooth extractions, and radiotherapy.

  • Cavities
  • Tobacco can result in large cavities around the gum line, making it easier for infections to weaken the tooth. Broken teeth will have to be repaired which is not only expensive but also painful in some cases.

No matter how good your teeth look at the surface, smoking leads to serious oral health problems. In most cases, smoking stains on teeth can be treated with whitening procedures. Tooth decay can be treated with fillings, root canals, and crowns. And gum disease will require deep cleaning.

This World No Tobacco Day, take a step towards better oral health! Encourage everyone you know who smokes to quit smoking to fight serious health problems.

Here at Koch Orthodontics, we care about your oral and overall health. We want to ensure you get the best results from your orthodontic treatment. Book a consultation with an experienced orthodontist in Lawrenceville to fight the ill effects of smoking with braces.

Swollen Gums with Braces: Causes, Treatments & Prevention

Everyone wants a beautiful smile with straight teeth and teeth braces are an easy way to achieve a perfect smile. However, maintaining oral hygiene with braces can get challenging. Dental braces make it slightly difficult to follow a dental hygiene routine which is the main reason for poor oral health. This leads to the accumulation of plaque which eventually paves the way for gingivitis. Fortunately, gingivitis is reversible and if you learn the symptoms and the preventive steps, you can easily avoid gingivitis during your orthodontic treatment.

Possible Causes of Swollen and Bleeding Gums

When you get your dental braces, they need to be adjusted at regular intervals. It is normal to experience some amount of swelling and soreness for a few days. Since your teeth are being moved, it requires the existing bone to dissolve for the formation of new bone. And so, the pressure and tension are a normal part of the orthodontic treatment.

Orthodontic treatments often result in swollen gums; however, if the pain, swelling, and soreness are persistent, it may be a sign of a more serious underlying problem. While lack of oral hygiene due to teeth braces can lead to the formation of plaque and bacteria that cause gingivitis, surges in hormone levels, genetics, excessive use of tobacco, and broken fillings can also lead to the development of gum disease.

The Signs and Symptoms Typically Associated with Gingivitis

  • Red and swollen gums
  • Bleeding gums while brushing and flossing
  • Bad breath
  • Loose teeth
  • Tenderness and inflammation in teeth and gums

If left untreated, gingivitis can develop into a condition called periodontitis. Over time, this more severe form of gum disease can adversely impact the bone and connective tissues that hold your teeth firmly in place. With the gradual receding of gums, pockets are formed in between the teeth. This leads to serious damage. So, don’t wait until you spot these dangerous dental signs. Always keep a close watch on dental health so you continue to have healthy gums and teeth.

While regular brushing and flossing is the best way to take care of your teeth and gums, other simple things can you can do to avoid gingivitis treatment are:

  1. Keep up with your periodic dental hygiene appointments.
  2. Use interdental brushes to clean around the dental braces.
  3. Use an antibacterial mouth rinse that is specifically prescribed for dental braces.
  4. Eat a healthy and balanced diet.
  5. Increase your intake of Vitamin C.
  6. Use the right oral care aids and essentials that are specially formulated for use during orthodontic treatment like water flossers, electric toothbrushes, and waterpik.

Here at Koch Orthodontics, we care about your oral and your overall health. So, we ensure that your teeth braces are customized to give you the best results while keeping you as comfortable as possible. To request a consultation with an experienced orthodontist in Lawrenceville call (770) 962-9560.



FAQs

Ceramic and metal brackets threaded with wires over your teeth can make brushing teeth thoroughly a bit difficult which causes the bacteria to accumulate in your mouth. And this leads to poor oral health and swollen gums. Besides, if you have sensitive gums, the pressure from braces can cause them to swell.

Your gums may be bit inflamed right after you take your braces off. But with time, as you brush and floss every day, it will go away. However, if the gum swelling lasts for more than 2 to 3 days, consult your orthodontist to avoid anything serious.

If your braces are fitted properly during your orthodontic appointment, your gums shouldn’t bleed. Gums often bleed if you do not follow a proper dental hygiene routine after getting the braces.

Dental Braces Before or After Wisdom Tooth Extraction?

A common concern for most parents is whether their child should get dental braces before or after their wisdom tooth extraction. Parents believe that there is a likelihood of a wisdom tooth eruption when their kids get braces early. However, the truth is that wisdom teeth erupt most commonly between the ages of 17 and 25. And there are very few kids with bite problems or crooked teeth who wait until they start a wisdom tooth extraction.

To understand this issue better, let us take a look at the few possible problems that come with wisdom tooth eruption:

  1. Wisdom teeth that have emerged partially are covered with a flap of skin. This flap of skin is more likely to be a breeding ground for infections since food debris can easily be trapped.
  2. In some cases, wisdom teeth have insufficient space to erupt. The teeth are then forced to remain below the surface of the gums which leads to great discomfort.
  3. Wisdom teeth infections can often lead to bigger problems. Tooth decay and painful cysts being two major reasons for discomfort.
  4. Poor alignment of wisdom teeth rubs the inside of your mouth at an awkward angle. This makes it difficult to speak and chew with ease.
  5. Wisdom teeth that have erupted perfectly or partially also increase the risk of tooth decay and gum disease.

Do you have an infection?

In some cases of a wisdom tooth eruption, you might notice that your entire right or left upper jaw is swollen and irritated. The pain might intensify by the hour, your head might start hurting and the vision in either of your eyes may appear blurry. Swelling and worsening of pain is a concern for an infection. If you have fevers and your swelling worsens, you should consult your orthodontist immediately.

Some patients might even experience difficulty in breathing and pain while swallowing. This could indicate that you may not have an infection, but local inflammation to the tooth protruding through the gums.

How to attend to the pain immediately?

Eating cold food like ice cream and ice water will help ease the discomfort, especially in a situation where you are unable to rush to the doctor immediately. However, if the pain does not subside, you should visit your orthodontist to determine if there indeed is an infection and how it can best be managed.

Should you wait for Wisdom Tooth Extraction before getting Braces?

Wisdom tooth extraction makes the most sense when you want your child to get braces. This is certain because wisdom teeth affect the alignment of your dental braces and what you want to make sure is that the orthodontic treatment is effective. An untreated wisdom tooth increases the risk of gum disease and tooth decay.

An appointment for a wisdom tooth extraction does not necessarily have to be scheduled just before you get dental braces. And a lot of parents encourage orthodontic treatments at a younger age, well before wisdom teeth erupt.

Seeking the help of an orthodontist and getting an x-ray will help you determine if a wisdom tooth extraction is best suited to you since every person is unique and no two individuals will be recommended with the same treatment.

Book an appointment with an experienced orthodontist in Lawrenceville to help you treat yours or your kid’s wisdom tooth eruption with ease.

Traveling with Braces – 6 ways to make your holiday memorable

It’s almost the start of the holiday season and we all deserve this break! Planning the perfect vacation for you and your family can be tricky. Whether you are traveling to the next town or are jetting off on a cool new destination, the fun and extravaganza of the trip remain the same.

If you or your child has dental braces, traveling may seem painful and complicated. Have you thought of postponing or cancelling your trip because you have an orthodontic treatment lined up? Fret not, because there are just a few things you need to take care of while you travel. Let us walk you through the dos and don’ts of traveling with dental braces.

  1. Pack keeping in mind your Orthodontic Needs
  2. When you start packing for your trip, don’t just pack your toiletries and clothes. Think about what you will need for your teeth and braces while you are away from home. Pack a dental braces kit and carry it with you at all times. This helps you in remaining ready for any dental emergencies that may emerge in the middle of your trip.

  1. Make a list of what You Can and Cannot Eat
  2. One of the biggest reasons why we go on a holiday is for the amazing food that awaits us. But while you travel with braces, you need to be extra careful about the foods that you consume. The last thing you want to deal with is damaging your braces. Here are some foods you should avoid while you are traveling with dental braces.

    • Avoid sugary drinks because their ingredients can cause tooth decay over time. It might even stain ceramic braces, clear aligners or your teeth.
    • As mouth-watering as it may sound, chewy foods like bagels and pizzas should be avoided as they may get stuck in your braces and might break your bracket or wire.
    • Cut fruits and vegetables into small bite-size pieces so that it is not hard for you to chew.
  1. Practice Good Oral Care
  2. When you are traveling with braces, you need to be more conscious of your dental care routine. This includes brushing and flossing regularly after every meal. Since you will be out and about most time of the day, where you will stop by at restaurants and cafes for your meals, carry a small kit with you that stores your toothbrush, toothpaste, and dental floss. Make sure you clean your teeth after every meal and drink plenty of water to rinse away any food debris.

  1. Pre-departure check-up
  2. Before you travel, it is a good idea to check with your orthodontist if your dental braces need to be adjusted. If you notice any discomfort that could potentially affect your trip, this is the best time to address those issues.

  1. Travel with your aligners
  2. You may be tempted to travel without your aligners for the perfect selfie or family photo. However, to make sure your treatment stays on track; you need to wear your aligners for 22 hours a day, even when you are traveling.

  1. Be ready in case of a dental emergency
  2. Dental emergencies are occasional, however in an emergency situation, scheduling an emergency visit to the orthodontist is important. Alternatively, you can call your orthodontist to guide you through the pain.

It is also important to understand that you may experience soreness or pain, 3-5 days after you have your braces on. This type of pain usually can be managed with home remedies and medications like Ibuprofen or Tylenol that are commonly consumed.

Have a wonderful vacation do not worry too much. Just remember that traveling with braces requires a little more care and attention, to keep the pain and discomfort at bay.

If you have any queries about traveling with braces, visit your experienced family orthodontist in Lawrenceville if you need your braces to be adjusted and tips on how to keep up with good hygiene.