Seeing Your Dentist During Orthodontic Treatment
Orthodontic patients should continue to see their dentist during orthodontic treatment and some patients need to see their dentist more frequently to ensure that optimum dental health is maintained until the end of orthodontic treatment.
The Difference Between Your Dentist and Orthodontist
Orthodontic patients sometimes assume that the orthodontist is looking for dental problems during an orthodontic visit. That is true to some extent as the orthodontist would definitely notice major changes to a certain tooth such as a large chip or fracture. The fact is the orthodontist is focused on the individual tooth movement and bite correction leaving areas such as cavities and other dental concerns for the primary care dentist to monitor.
How Often You Should Visit Your Dentist
Dental Cleanings for Kids and Teens
Children, adolescents and teen orthodontic patients should undergo professional cleanings every 6 months. The professional cleaning done by the dentist or hygienist removes plaque and calculus (tartar) which are the primary causes of gingival (gum) inflammation. These regular cleanings can actually improve tooth movement and assist in the prevention of white spots on teeth during orthodontic treatment. At the cleaning visit patients often receive a professional fluoride treatment which strengthens the tooth enamel making it more resistant to color changes and decay. All of these services are not routinely provided at the orthodontic visit.
Dental Cleanings for Adults
Adult orthodontic patients are encouraged to see the dentist every 3-6 months for professional cleaning and periodontal examination. Adult patients are at risk for periodontal disease (bone loss) which can occur very quickly during orthodontic treatment. Tooth movement in the presence of inflammation needs to be avoided making the dental cleaning more important than ever.
Learn More About Orthodontic Treatment from the Experts at Coreil Orthodontics
Patients undergoing orthodontics should continue to see their dentist during orthodontic
treatment. We always tell patients that the ultimate goal is to complete orthodontic treatment
with better dental health than before the start. Visit our FAQ page for answers to the most
frequently asked questions about orthodontic treatment.