Have you ever seen someone who had what looked like white circles on their teeth? Unfortunately, these scarred areas of enamel are usually the result of less-than-adequate home care during orthodontic treatment.
To understand how to prevent white circles, we first need to understand what causes them. The circle itself is where the bracket was bonded to the tooth. As plaque accumulated around the bracket each day, it began to etch away at the outer layer of enamel. Usually, good brushing will remove all of the plaque. But if someone didn’t brush long, often, or thoroughly enough, the plaque will get left behind in certain areas.
In time, all of that plaque starts to trigger a decay process. But the first stage of decay is demineralization. And demineralized enamel is typically whiter than that around it. In this situation, there may be infrequent cleaning where the plaque doesn’t lead to a full cavity, but demineralization has already occurred.
Once the braces come off, all of those scarred areas are left behind.
To prevent white circles on teeth, our Marietta orthodontist stresses good oral hygiene each day. Thorough brushing for at least two minutes (an electric toothbrush is preferred) and daily flossing are key. Make a point to brush twice a day, minimum. Three is even better.
We’ll also prescribe fluoride gel to use at home each night. When used as directed, fluoride can remineralize weak enamel to help prevent cavities and white spots on teeth. The key is to use it early before plaque ever has a chance to sit there too long.
For more home care advice, contact East Cobb Orthodontics in Marietta.