So, you’ve gotten your braces off! Finally, after all this time, you’re celebrating the end of your orthodontic treatment and your brand-new smile. Hopefully, you’re feeling as confident as ever, but this isn’t the end of your orthodontic journey. In fact, to maintain that lovely new smile, there are some things you’ll need to do.
Visit your dentist
If it’s been a while since you last saw your dentist, it might be a good idea to give them a visit! Even if you’re a regular at your dental practice, it can be difficult to keep your teeth in tip-top shape when you have braces. Now that you’re no longer dealing with hidden nooks and crannies from braces, it’s time to let a dentist clean your teeth. This way, they can ward off any plaque or stains that might have built up during your treatment and ensure that you maintain the smile you’ve earned!
Be gentle with your mouth
After removing your braces, your teeth and gums might feel slightly sensitive or tender. It’s important to be patient with your mouth. It takes some time to adjust to life without braces—just like it did when you got braces. It may be helpful to continue eating braces-friendly foods and drinks that will be gentle on your teeth. However, as your sensitivity dissipates, you can incorporate those foods you’ve missed.
Wear your retainer as instructed
Because you’re no longer wearing braces or appliances to keep your teeth in place, the only way to maintain your new smile is by wearing your retainer. Your teeth are most susceptible to shifts in the first few months after you’ve gotten your braces off, so you should wear your retainer exactly as directed by our experts. Although every treatment plan is different, you will probably have both bonded retainers and an upper night retainer. The nighttime retainer is especially important because the bonded retainers are not attached to all the teeth. Be sure to take good care of your retainer as well. Keeping them (and the case!) clean prevents bacteria buildup in your mouth.
New smile, new dental hygiene regimen
Now that your braces are off, brushing, flossing, and generally taking care of your teeth will be much easier. Brush your teeth at least twice daily and replace your toothbrush every few months (or when the bristles appear frayed or you’ve been sick). Daily flossing is also a must!
Keep in touch
Even after you’ve finished treatment, keep in touch! You’re still part of our smile family. Retainers won’t last forever—plus, you may lose, break, or damage your appliance. Come in to see us if you need a replacement or if you stopped wearing your retainer and are noticing your teeth shifting. We always love to see you! For more information or to schedule an appointment, please call us at 708-636-2900.