Getting your braces off is often one of the happiest days of a teen’s years. All the work that has gone in to building a beautiful smile with an optimal, healthy alignment. There may be no bigger letdown than looking at a brand new, freshly aligned smile and discovering that the last trace of braces remains in the form of little white spots at each of the former metal attachment spots. All is not lost, however. White spots on the teeth can be treated and improved, leaving behind the beautiful smile that was the consistent goal of the entire orthodontic treatment program. There are several ways to reduce white spots after braces.
An Ounce of Prevention: Don’t let spots form in the first place
The old adage, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure,” has been around so long because it has truth value. The easiest way to deal with white spots is to keep them from developing. White spots that develop around the edge of braces are caused by minerals being stripped from tooth enamel while the mouth is acidic. Brushing carefully, getting every spot and removing all food particles from between teeth and all around the braces is important. pH elevating oral care products can also help keep acid damage at bay. Meticulous oral hygiene can help keep teeth healthy and avoid those white spots.
Finding What’s Lost: Replacing lost minerals
The minerals missing from your enamel need to be replaced to fill in white spots, returning cosmetic appeal and improving tooth health. Fluoride has long been recommended to help build tooth enamel. Better still, a product that contains nano-hydroxyapatite contains minerals in the form that tooth enamel needs to repair itself. Using a remineralizing toothpaste containing both fluoride and nanohydroxyapatite gives your teeth the best available building blocks for enamel repair.
What Goes Up: Controlling the pH cycle for optimal remineralization
The mouth has its own natural pH cycle. It goes down, becoming more acidic, when you eat and goes up after eating to return to a safer level for enamel. Because the acid environment strips minerals from enamel, it can worsen existing white spot or cause new ones. When treating white spots, it’s important to help keep pH levels high, in the range where minerals can redeposit on tooth enamel. Not snacking between meals and restricting between meal beverages to plain water can help keep pH levels high. Using oral care products specifically formulated to support healthy oral pH can also be a huge help.