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Dr. Skeet Burris, Travis Fiegle & Katie Pluckett installed your new braces in your mouth with the intention that they would address and realign your teeth in the shortest amount of time possible. Should your teeth develop areas of tooth decay, or if any part of your braces are bent, loosened or damaged, it will likely increase the total amount of time you will need to have braces.

Being mindful of a few minor changes to your everyday habits and a diligent oral hygiene routine, can help minimize the amount of time you need to wear braces. If any part of your braces is damaged, or you develop one or more cavities near the hardware, it could very well increase the duration of time you need to wear braces.

Chewing gum and eating sticky foods are two of the most common causes of damage to braces. These foods have the ability to bend wires, loosen brackets or even dislodge a spacer. You should also beware crunching on hard foods, chewing ice and hard candies, as it could also bend wires and damage bands. This also extends to bad habits like chewing on hard objects, pencils, pens, and ice.

Should something in your braces break and there is sharp point threatening your cheek or gums, you can secure the problem area inside the special orthodontic wax you were given when the braces were installed. If you don’t have the wax readily on hand, you can use a pencil eraser in a pinch.

Maintaining your daily oral hygiene routine of brushing and flossing twice each day is critical for removing plaque and residual food particles. If you’re having difficulty cleaning around the braces or flossing the spaces between your teeth, you might want to try using interdental brushes or a floss threader with wax coated floss.

If you have questions about the best way to clean and maintain your new braces, you can call Dr. Skeet Burris, Travis Fiegle & Katie Pluckett at (843) 525-6228 to schedule an appointment.