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                                                        DR. DAN PETERSON

                                                                      1415 SAGE STREET ~ GERING, NEBRASKA 69341 
                                                             
      Call: 308-436-3491       www.dentalgentlecare.com           

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CARE OF BRACES

YOUR DILIGENCE IN DAILY CLEANING IS REALLY
 THE KEY TO GOOD ORAL HEALTH.

Eating with braces:

     What you eat can "fuel" dental problems.  Every time you eat foods containing sugars or starches, the bacteria in your mouth rapidly grow and produce acid which dissolve the tooth enamel to cause decay.  

     These acids can attack for 20 minutes or more each time your eat! So think about these points before you eat:

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The time the food is in the mouth-sugary foods that you suck on stay in the mouth longer leading to an extended acid attack

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Physical characteristics of the food-food that stick to your teeth, raisins, cookies, dried fruits, will prolong acid attack

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Time of day the food is eaten-sugar and starches as part of a meal are less harmful than eaten alone.  Foods eaten just before bed stay on the teeth throughout the night! 

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What is eaten along with the foods: eating cheese, sugar-free or xylitol gum along with or after eating sugar/starches, may help counter the effects of acids produced by bacteria.

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It is how often you eat sugar and starches NOT how much you eat.

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Foods to avoid during treatment: Anything sticky, chewy, gooey or hard like: Hard bubble gum; chewing on ice, pens, pencils or anything hard; caramel; taffy; Now and Laters; Gummy Bears; hard nuts, popcorn or chips. Also a

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Cut foods like carrots, apples or hard bread crusts into bite-size pieces.

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Remember, BREAKAGE DELAYS TREATMENT!

Brushing:

     Then bands /bonded brackets on braces create small nooks and crannies where food and plaque can hide to cause decay.  This process can also cause permanent white lines and spots as enamel is dissolved by the acids!  Bloody, swollen gums, bad breath, and food debris on wires can all be a real turnoff to your friends so:

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Brush after each meal and snack.

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Clean between your teeth and around each bracket daily.

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Try an electric toothbrush like Sonicare that cleans with a combination of high speed brushing (31,000 gentle strokes/min.) and sonic wave action to thoroughly clean hard to reach, high-risk areas where plaque bacteria can hide.

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Use toothpaste with fluoride.

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Take time to brush THOROUGHLY.  

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After brushing inspect your teeth and braces in a well-light mirror.

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Floss with a floss threader or use the automatic Flosser by Waterpik.

You can easily carry these with you ..keep in your car, at your desk and by the TV
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Try a proxy brush to clean between the teeth.

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Waterpik™ oral irrigator will remove particles of food from your teeth. that brushing often can not remove.

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Use a fluoride mouth rinse to strengthening enamel against decay and repair microscopic cavities by remineralize them.

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See the dentist every six months for professional fluoride treatments and cleanings.

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Electric toothbrushes provide " superior plaque removal ... reduction of gingival inflammation in those patients using the powered versus the manual toothbrush*. 

Braces, Sports and Mouthguards

When participating in sporting events a mouthguard may be the only thing between you and costly dental work, especially for people who wear braces.

Using a mouthguard can prevent damage to any orthodontic apparatus as well as prevent mouth lacerations and tooth damage.  However the kind of mouth guard you use can made a big difference.  Custom-made mouthguards are best according to the Academy of General Dentistry.  A perfect fit can better protect teeth and disperse impacts to the mouth.  Gaps between the teeth and mouth guard, common with commercially manufactured mouthguards, allow leeway from injury to occur.  

It only takes one fall to suffer a life-long injury.  Mouthguards are like seatbelts , they only work if you wear them.  

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Oral Sex and Braces-BEWARE!

Sex Warning For Teenagers With Braces

Metal braces can scratch genital areas or rip a hole in a condom, increasing the potential for sexually transmitted diseases such as HIV/AIDS, cautions Boston cosmetic dentist Helaine Smith. She has issued a warning to teenagers engaging in sexual practices such as oral sex or French kissing, saying they should be cautious if they or their partners wear metal braces on their teeth.

Metal braces can scratch delicate genital areas, tear sensitive mouth tissues, or rip a hole in a condom. Such incidents increase the potential for sexually transmitted diseases and blood-borne pathogens, including HIV/AIDS, chlamydia, and hepatitis B and C.

Most teens and young adults don't realize that metal dental braces can do some damage,. `And while new dental
technologies such as Invisalign and plastic braces have been introduced, the fact is, many dentists still rely on the traditional metal braces and their nickel titanium brackets, wires, and ties. Even plastic braces still use metal wires and ties that can cause damage.

Because the metal brackets and wires can catch on the thin latex of condoms and dental dams and cause microscopic tears, Dr. Smith advises teens and young adults to carefully consider whether to engage in oral sex with partners who wear wire braces. Safer sex practices also include changing the condom before engaging in another sexual activity in order to reduce the risk of STDs and/or unintended pregnancy – even if one thinks the condom has not been damaged.

Dental dams, which are also made of latex, are used when performing oral sex on a woman and protect against herpes and genital warts. Dr. Smith advises young adults to also exercise caution when participating in long kissing sessions with partners who wear braces because the brackets can tear delicate mouth tissues and increase the exposure to blood-borne pathogens and STDs such as HIV/AIDs. 1/06

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Medications and Braces 

Finding from a current research project suggest that aspirin like drugs not be administered to patients undergoing orthodontic tooth movement as it may extend the treatment time.
 
  • Am J Orthod. 1986 Apr;89(4):312-4.
  • The effect of indomethacin (an aspirin-like drug) on the rate of orthodontic tooth movement. Chumbley AB, Tuncay OC.
    PMID: 3083687 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]  10/05

    See How a Retainer Is Made   

    Sources: Managing the Home Care of Adolescent Orthodontic Patients, Dentistry Today, January 2002.
    *Effectiveness of a Powered Toothbrush Compared with a Manual Toothbrush for Orthodontic Patients with Fixed Appliances Annerose Borutta ,Elisabeth Pala Thomas Fischer (J Clin Dent 13:131­137, 2002.)

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              If you have any questions please e-mail me at: drdpeterson@scottsbluff.net
                                                                                     308-436-3491 Office number

    PLEASE NOTE: The information contained herein is intended for educational purposes only.  It is not intended and should not be construed as the delivery of dental/medical care and is not a substitute for personal hands on dental/medical attention, diagnosis or treatment.  Persons requiring diagnosis, treatment, or with specific questions are urged to contact your family dental/health care provider for appropriate care.
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