Orthodontic care tips for Valentine’s Day
Valentine’s Day, the biggest celebration of love in the world, is just around the corner. Whether you’ve just started with orthodontic treatment or are almost done, it’s important to follow these orthodontic care tips to ensure your breath stays fresh and your teeth stay clean for the most romantic day of the year.
Oral health 101
Hopefully you’ve got your oral hygiene routine down to a fine art, but everyone can do with a refresher. In the lead up to Valentine’s Day (and ideally all the time) be sure to brush your teeth, gums and tongue at least twice a day. Flossing or cleaning between your teeth with Pikster thin toothbrushes should be done once a day or once every second day. The use of mouthwash is not necessary – some mouthwashes can irritate or dry out your gums/cheeks. A mouthwash can be thought of as perfume; it can make you feel good when you use it, but it doesn’t actually clean or improve the health of your teeth and gums.
Those undergoing orthodontic treatment including traditional braces, clear aligners or lingual braces will find that their appliance clings to all the little bits of food and can become a breeding ground for harmful bacteria. Throughout your treatment you should brush your teeth after every meal and rinse any removable appliances under cold water.
Keep your cavities to yourself
The bacteria that causes holes or cavities aren’t unique to our own mouth. In fact, they can be passed by sharing a fork or kissing (any time when saliva may be exchanged) so it’s important to keep your mouth clean by following the above hygiene tips. Brush your teeth and clean your appliances before you leave for your big date for minty fresh breath and to reduce the amount of bacteria in the mouth.
Be prepared for emergencies
Whether you’re heading out on the town or having date night at home be prepared for all your orthodontic emergencies. Be sure to bring your travel toothbrush, toothpaste and your preferred floss. If using clear aligners or a retainer, bring your retainer case so your appliance can be safely stored when it’s time to eat.
DON’T take a break from your appliances
With clear aligner treatment it’s important to wear your aligners for at least 22 hours a day for the best results. Just because you can remove it, doesn’t mean you should. Wear your appliance to your night out, but make sure you bring your retainer case, so you can store your appliance safely when you eat!
Can I kiss with braces?
Some people are worried about braces getting stuck when kissing, but with modern orthodontic appliances it’s highly unlikely that two people with braces will become stuck. However, if you feel like you have a loose wire or bracket, there’s a small chance they may become tangled (a very, very small chance), so if something feels loose make an appointment with your orthodontist as soon as possible (this is important to keep your treatment on track anyway!).
And don’t forget to smile!
Don’t hide your smile from the world – even when undergoing orthodontic treatment. Your Valentine will respond to the joy on your face when you flash them a loving smile, so be prepared to bare those pearly whites!