Braces are a standard treatment method for many children, as they provide solid and long-lasting adjustments that keep teeth secure and healthy for years to come. Unfortunately, many teens don’t take their braces as seriously as they should and end up causing some damage to them unexpectedly.
This problem makes it necessary to look at these nine oral health care tips for teens and to ensure that you follow them to the letter. Doing so will help to ensure that you don’t experience any long-term problems with your braces. And if you’re a parent, sit down and talk with your teen about these issues. Here’s some advice on how to do so from family dentists.
Be Careful Around Crunchy Foods
Teens love snacks and often prefer foods like potato chips or peanuts that have that satisfying crunch to them. Unfortunately, these foods are the worst things for your braces. The shuddering sensation caused by a crack will potentially damage your braces and cause a lot of long-term damage that may require you to get them fixed. And this problem isn’t just tied to braces as well.
For instance, most broken teeth repair steps occur because people aren’t careful to eat crunchy food. So while those peanuts, almonds, nuts, and potato chips are delicious but they can be a real problem for your braces. It is time to put them away or at least seriously cut back on how often you eat them. Some may not be able to eat crunchy foods during their whole period with braces.
Instead, it would be best if you tried to find snacks that aren’t so crunchy and foods that are healthier for your braces. For instance, ice cream, various pudding types, and other options are excellent choices for those struggling to get over their need for crunchy foods. It’s oral health care tips for teens that will help ensure that your braces are strong and that you don’t run into complications with their upkeep.
Keep You Regular Dentist Appointments
Many teens suddenly think that they don’t have to see their dentist anymore because their orthodontist will take care of everything for them. That idea is not congruent with reality. The truth is that you’re going to need to work with your regular dentist and keep your appointments regularly. Many different benefits occur when working with these experts that help you and your braces.
You’re going to see your orthodontist regularly, it is true, but you’ll also need to see your family dentist regularly to ensure that you aren’t causing damage to your teeth. These experts can check for problems with your overall oral health and gauge your braces as well. While they cannot repair this damage due to their lack of training, they can work with your orthodontist to avoid issues.
Ensure that you talk to your parents about this type of appointment and ensure that you work with them to get the highest-quality treatment possible. Of all the oral health care tips for teens on this list, this is the most obvious. You can’t just start ignoring your dentists at this point because you’ll be doing your teeth a real disservice and could cause real problems with your oral health that may linger.
Don’t Ignore Oral Pain
At various times throughout your treatment process, you’re likely to develop some sharp and troubling pain throughout your teeth. This problem is widespread because your braces will adjust your teeth and put pressure on them. Beyond that issue, though, you may also develop oral pain due to various dental and oral health issues that may linger and become very problematic.
If you notice any pain and it feels like you cannot tolerate it, talk to your orthodontist or dentist about various types of pain management you can utilize for this process. Many medicines are available to help here, including multiple pain medicines and various braces adjustments to ensure that you aren’t needlessly suffering due to your braces and any installation troubles.
Your oral pain intensity shouldn’t matter in this situation: any type can be a real problem. So if you’re noticing sensitivity to coldness or heat, which may come and go, you still need to take this pain seriously. Failure to do so could cause you to experience some real adverse side effects and a variety of long-term complications that may impact your overall treatment for years to come.
Ask About Your Treatment Timeline
All orthodontic treatments have a specific timeline that indicates how long you’re going to need braces. These timelines will vary according to factors beyond your control, such as the severity of your orthodontic problems and much more. Knowing how long you can expect to wear your braces will help you prepare for the demands they put on you and ensure that you are confident with your recovery.
Whenever you start orthodontic treatment, you need to make sure that you ask your orthodontist about every step of the process. They will gladly discuss what you’re going to experience and give you an idea of how long each step will last. Then, they’ll give you a better understanding of what to expect in this situation and how you can help yourself and the orthodontist with these steps simultaneously.
Knowing this information can also help shorten your recovery timeline by providing you with information about steps you can take that increase your recovery speed. For example, your orthodontist may give you oral health care tips for teens on how to wear your retainer at night or other simple suggestions that will ensure you can recover quickly and avoid long-term problems.
Make the Necessary Dietary Changes
Your dentist and orthodontist are probably going to suggest some pretty significant dietary changes to your life after you get braces. Some teens may feel unhappy about these suggestions because they limit what they can eat and force them to eat various foods. However, it would help if you embraced this change because it will give you the best chance of avoiding damage to your braces.
For instance, many cast iron skillet meals are soft enough for your teeth and tasty enough for most teen’s taste buds. Scrambling or frying eggs on these skillets can provide you with the protein you need to recover from your treatment difficulties. And these skillets also offer a surprising array of different meal options that are more than worth your time as an individual.
While protein is critical for your oral health, you may also want to add more calcium to your diet through milk and even dietary supplements. Most dentists suggest these oral health care tips for teens because calcium is critical for oral health. Even later in life, a good dose of calcium enhances a person’s teeth strength and creates high-quality health support that lasts for years.
Listen to Your Orthodontist Just Like Another Doctor
Orthodontists often do not get the respect that other medical experts receive for one reason or another. For example, there are a large number of teens who may disrespect orthodontists and cause complications. Instead, you need to make sure that you listen to what they have to say and take the time to understand them. Doing so will help make this process much easier for everyone involved here.
For example, your orthodontist is a medical professional like eye care services, dentists, and other medical experts who can help you with many other treatments. As a result, you need to make sure that you spend the time talking with your orthodontist to learn more about what kind of services they can provide and learn more about the type of services they can provide.
By fully understanding your orthodontist in this way, you can ensure that you don’t run into any complications, such as a lack of respect or other problems, that may impact how well you get treated. Your orthodontist wants and deserves respect, and you need to ensure that they get it. Ensure that you talk to your kids about oral health care tips for teens like these to ensure that they act appropriately.
Water is essential for your health, no matter what conditions you may or may not possess. And water is critical for those who have braces because it can provide a surprising range of benefits. Even those who don’t have braces need to make sure that they stay well hydrated to avoid health problems. But after you get braces, you’ll need water more than ever to help keep your oral health secure.
If you’re struggling to stay well hydrated, you may want to consider a water filter that helps to keep your water safe. Hard water isn’t necessarily damaging to braces but contains many different elements, metals, and minerals. All of these items can build up on the exterior of your braces and may ultimately result in actual damage that is hard to manage without professional help.
And when you find a filter, you can use water bottles to keep yourself well hydrated and healthy and prevent serious long-term complications. Keeping yourself hydrated will help improve your immune system and wash away any items on your teeth, such as plaque or stains. Try to drink at least 7-10 glasses of water every day to keep yourself as hydrated as possible.
Keep Your Mouth Clean
The inside of your mouth needs to stay as clean as possible at all times. But when you have braces, it is more important than ever to avoid severe contamination in your mouth. Food particles can cause plaque buildup that may lead to decay. And this problem can happen even on your braces, which may cause real issues correcting your teeth positioning and may also trigger long-term dental decay.
As a result, it is essential to wash your mouth out regularly after each meal, using toothpaste and mouthwash as much as possible. These oral health care tips for teens may seem basic, but sometimes, you need to remind people over and over again of the most basic steps possible. Don’t forget to use floss, if appropriate, and try to avoid damaging your braces in any way with inappropriate usage.
Some teens and their parents may also want to go a step further and consider food sanitization as a way of keeping dangerous chemicals and other items out of their mouths. Doing so will ensure that your braces don’t get impacted by the buildup of plaque and other health problems that may develop throughout your mouth. It also avoids long-term scarring and other potential health issues.
Ask About Oral Health at the Dentist
As a teen, you need to start taking a more active role in your healthcare and learn how to make decisions that ensure you can manage your braces’ health. You should ask questions about everything related to your braces and your oral health and work with your dentist and orthodontist. Yes, you should have your parents with you, but you need to make sure that you understand everything.
When you take an active role in your medical services in this way, you ensure that you understand what you have to do to help yourself. As a teen, you are getting to the point where you’re going to have to start taking care of yourself. And these oral health care tips for teens are designed to make it easier for you to do so. While your parents may still help out with many things, you got to transition to independence.
Make sure that you are actively engaging with your dentist and your orthodontist and seeing what you can do to improve your overall oral health. By working with these professionals in a streamlined and straightforward manner, you can make sure that they can handle your needs and feel comfortable talking to you about what is necessary for your overall treatment effectiveness.
You Got This!
Your braces shouldn’t be considered a point of shame or something that you feel uncomfortable wearing. We understand that you probably feel like the only person in the world who has to wear braces. That’s far from the truth, as millions of teens are just like you in the world with braces.
And most of them will take the oral health care tips for teens suggested above to ensure that their oral health is robust and that their braces are not damaged. So dedicate yourself to your treatment, and you’ll find yourself quickly coming to accept the unique benefits that braces add to your life.