For many years, straightening one’s teeth with braces has been a popular and successful cosmetic dental procedure. This technique effectively treats even the most severe cases of orthodontic misalignment. However, some patients discover that their teeth have changed color when they remove the braces after completing the treatment.
White, yellow or brown spots on the teeth are a common side effect of wearing braces. As such, you may have noticed this discoloration on the teeth of friends or family members after removing their braces. This unwanted consequence may be prevalent, but it is avoidable and treatable if you do not manage to prevent it from happening.
Prevention strategies and treatment modalities aside, why do braces leave white spots on so many patients’ teeth?
How Does Wearing Braces Cause White Spots?
The day your braces are removed is a memorable moment. You now have a stunning, perfectly straight smile! Regrettably, this grand occasion gets tainted for some patients when they notice those disturbing white spots on their teeth. Known as white spot lesions, these dental blemishes are the outcome of enamel damage.
The enamel sustains damage when acid stays in contact with it for a long time, dissolving calcium and other essential minerals. So how does acid get on your teeth? Food particles left around the braces turn into plaque – an acid-producing bacteria film.
Plaque is more likely to be missed on the tooth surfaces surrounding the hardware because it can be challenging to brush and floss around braces’ wires and brackets. Those neglected regions may eventually lead to white spot lesions.
Is There a Way to Remove the White Spots Left Behind by Braces?
The prevalence of white spots among patients highlights how maintaining good oral hygiene seems to be the most challenging aspect of wearing braces. A cosmetic dentist can fix the problem of white spots on those who did not follow dental care instructions properly. However, to avoid having to deal with another dental procedure after years of dealing with your orthodontic treatment, listen closely to your orthodontist’s advice.
If ever in doubt, you can contact Broad Street Braces for guidance or request that one of our specialists demonstrate how to clean around your braces the next time you come for an adjustment.