How To Prevent White Spots

In the middle of orthodontic treatment? You might have noticed pesky white spots forming on your teeth. What the heck are they? And what can you do about them? Johnson Family Orthodontics, your trusted orthodontic practice in Salem, wants to tell you how to prevent white spots! Spearheaded by our very own Dr. Cole Johnson, our team wants to help you educate yourself about this part of your orthodontic treatment. White spots can often stand out against your teeth, affecting the appearance of your smile. But don’t worry, because in this post, we are going to explore what white spots are, the role of orthodontics keeping them at bay, and how Dr. Johnson and our experienced team can help you stop these white spots from forming. 

Got A Lot O’ Spots?

We sometimes encounter stumbling blocks in our path to a straighter and shinier smile. One of these obstacles can be the appearance of white splotches on our teeth. For many of our patients these spots are often a cause of concern for many patients. But what exactly are these white spots? 

Typically, white spots show up as opaque, chalky patches on the enamel. Your enamel is the outside layer of your teeth. These spots may look somewhat milky or off-white and often stand out against your normal tooth color. White spots can occur on any of your teeth. But they’re most apparent on your front teeth, which are prominent when you smile or talk.

What Causes White Spots?

The formation of these spots is generally linked to a process known as demineralization or decalcification. What do those words mean for you, and why does it matter? Here’s what happens: acids produced by bacteria in plaque dissolve the minerals in your tooth’s enamel. That’s what makes these white, chalky areas. If left untreated, decalcification can progress into tooth decay or cavities, causing more serious oral health issues.

It’s important to note that while orthodontic treatments, like braces, do not directly cause white spots, they can make teeth more susceptible to them. The brackets and wires can make it harder for you to clean every tiny crevice of your teeth effectively. That gives the plaque a free pass if you do not keep up your oral hygiene. You must understand the importance of prevention and good oral hygiene during orthodontic treatment.

Braces Cause Spots (Not!)

Orthodontic treatments, such as braces, play an integral role in shaping and straightening our smiles. However, while transforming our smiles, they can inadvertently make it easier for our teeth to develop white spots. This is not because the braces cause these white spots directly. Instead, it’s due to the task that braces can present to keeping your pearly whites…well, pearly white. 

With their wires, brackets, and bands, braces create numerous tiny spaces where food particles can get trapped (blek!). These trapped particles can quickly provide a breeding ground for bacteria, leading to plaque formation. As we’ve discussed earlier, the acid produced by this bacterial plaque is the primary culprit behind tooth enamel erosion and the eventual appearance of white spots.

The design of braces, particularly their brackets and bands, can shield certain areas of the tooth surface, resulting in uneven coloration. This effect is especially noticeable once the braces are removed, and the contrast between the protected and exposed areas of the teeth becomes more obvious.

However, this issue should not stop you from seeking orthodontic treatment at Johnson Family Orthodontics. The benefits of orthodontic treatments, such as improved tooth and jaw function, aesthetics, and oral health, far outweigh the potential risk of developing white spots. This risk can be decreased by following a diligent routine. Dr. Johnson and our team do everything we can to help you with these potential obstacles and use the power of treatment to squash those spots even before they start! 

Your Plot Against White Spots

Stopping white spots during orthodontic treatment may seem difficult. Still, it’s within your reach with the right strategies and oversight from a skilled orthodontist. At Johnson Family Orthodontics in Salem, Dr. Johnson and our fantastic team emphasize the importance of good oral hygiene as the first defense against white spots. 

Here are some essential steps we encourage every patient to follow. 

  1. Brush your teeth at least twice daily. 
  2. Floss daily.
  3. Rinse with a fluoride mouthwash.

Understanding the challenge braces can be, our team at Johnson Family Orthodontics also provides additional tools and resources to assist you with them. We offer special brushes designed to clean around braces and other orthodontic appliances, making it easier to dislodge trapped food particles and plaque. We also emphasize the need for regular dental check-ups and professional cleanings, which help check plaque and tartar buildup.

Another way to curb white spots is by maintaining a balanced diet. Eliminating sugar, acidic foods, and soft drinks can substantially reduce the risk of white spots. Our team at Johnson Family Orthodontics is more than willing to provide dietary advice tailored to each patient’s needs and lifestyle.

How To Prevent White Spots

Stop Spots On The Spot With Johnson Family Orthodontics

At Johnson Family Orthodontics in Salem, Dr. Cole Johnson and our stellar team are dedicated to giving you a healthier, straighter, brighter smile. It’s crucial to remember that the potential risks linked to orthodontic treatments can be effectively mitigated with consistent oral hygiene and professional guidance. Don’t let the fear of white spots keep you from attaining your dream smile. Head over here to schedule a free consultation with Dr. Johnson today. We’re ready to answer your questions and tailor a treatment plan that fits your unique orthodontic needs.