Braces-Friendly Food

Eating become significantly more difficult after getting braces. You have to avoid certain foods because they can get caught up in your braces, causing bacteria to grow that can corrode and discolor your teeth. That doesn’t mean all is lost, there are still a number of safe food options for you even if you have braces. 

 

SOFT BREAD

Soft pastries such as zucchini or banana bread are perfect choices for those with braces if you have a little extra time and the right baking skills. You can add a couple of chocolate chips or raisins to make it a little more interesting! Japanese milk bread and soft dinner rolls are also good choices, they tear easily and are easily chewed. They’re unlikely to get stuck in your braces. 

 

MASHED ANYTHING

Mashed potatoes, cauliflower mash, yam puree, these are all decent options to whip up in the kitchen if you’re feeling snacky and wants to avoid eating chips and crisps that can damage the wiring of braces. In the same vein, blended fruits can be made into great smoothies or smoothie bowls which are healthy and tasty snack options. 

 

OATMEAL

Seriously, when prepared well, this stereotypically boring foodstuff can be just as good as, and much healthier than breakfast cereal. Cooked oatmeal with a little honey and cinnamon is a filling breakfast option. You can even top it with fruits like sliced bananas, mandarin orange slices, grapes, and blueberries. You can alsowhip up a thicker oatmeal and make the batch into some oatcakes for something a little more interesting. Oatcakes are a great substitute for starchy breakfast pancakes that are usually drowned in syrup, which is bad for your teeth. 

 

Although braces do place certain restrictions on your child’s diet, this doesn’t make snack time a total chore! You will have infinite fun making up healthy food into exciting new dishes that are braces-friendly so long as you know which things to avoid.

 

If you have more questions about what to do for your new diet after you get your braces, make an appointment with us here at mBrace. 

Food For Your Teeth

A lot of different aspects of your health are more interrelated than you think. Some studies show links between your jaw alignment and sleep apnea, poor dental hygiene can cause the growth of tonsil stones, and there’s even a growing amount of scientific literature exploring the connection between your oral health and gastrointestinal problems. Even your diet can affect your dental health. Here are a few foods you can incorporate into your meals for better dental health. 

Milk

Milk is a great source of calcium, which strengthens your bones and teeth. Aside from that, two components in milk, lactic acid and casein may be able to aid in lightening your teeth. Lactic acid also increases saliva intake, which can help reduce the growth of bacteria that can discolor your teeth while casein is also helpful against plaque buildup and helps heal cavities. Adding milk to your tea and coffee is a good way to prevent them from staining your teeth. 

These two components can also be found in other dairy products like cheese, yogurt, and cream. 

Fruits and Vegetables 

People with braces may think twice before consuming some fruits and vegetables, but by eating more fruits and veggies, you can guarantee better overall health, and yes, that includes your teeth. You should also look into specific fruits and vegetables and what they can do for your teeth. Watermelon, for example, contains malic acid, a substance that may whiten your teeth. Fibrous fruits and vegetables in general are a safe choice because when you bite into them, the fibers brush against your teeth in a way not unlike that of a toothbrush. 

Water

Anyone with braces or Invisalign will probably know this already, but staying hydrated is important. When you drink water, you rinse out your mouth and prevent any harmful bacteria from settling in. More than that, it’s great for avoiding dry mouth, and it’s just generally good for your wellbeing to stay hydrated. 

For any other orthodontic concerns or inquiries, schedule a consultation with us here at mBrace . 

Food To Eat For Whiter Teeth

Everyone wants white teeth, and getting white teeth is relatively easy. If you practice proper dental care, that’s brushing, flossing, having regular dental check-ups, chances are, your teeth are fine. Now, as with a lot of daily activities, braces can complicate things. When you wear braces, a sizeable portion of your teeth is obstructed by wires, brackets, and hinges. This means that when you brush your teeth, your toothbrush isn’t getting the full surface area of your teeth. That doesn’t mean that you aren’t cleaning your teeth well, it just means that you just need to take a few extra steps to make sure that all parts of your teeth are cleaned well. One way to do that is by maintaining a diet that’s braces-friendly. Here are a few foods that are great for getting whiter teeth. 

Broccoli 

Even if kids dread the stuff, this vegetable is rich in iron, a substance that can mitigate teeth staining caused by acid corrosion. Incorporating broccoli into your diet isn’t just good for your health, it’s good for your teeth too! 

Cheese

Cheese is rich in calcium, an essential for promoting better bone health and for keeping the enamel of your teeth strong and healthy. To be honest, this fact is true for all dairy products, so apart from eating more cheese, stocking up on milk and yogurt isn’t a bad idea either. 

Apples

While the popular idiom has attested to the apple’s ability to keep the doctor away, an orthodontist also won’t be telling you to avoid them. The texture of the fruit acts as a sort of scrapper for teeth staining, making your teeth appear whiter. Naturally, this applies to the uncooked fruit, so stewed or baked apples in pies and desserts won’t have that sponge-like ability to wipe off stains, so eat your apples uncooked. 

Strawberries

This berry is rich in a substance called malic acid which essentially whitens your teeth. Malic acid is a natural acid that removes tooth staining. If apples are kind of like scrubbers, think of the malic acid in strawberry as the cleaning solution. 

If you want to learn more about what you can do to get the smile you deserve, schedule a consultation with us here at MBrace for any and all of your orthodontic concerns. 

 

The Foods That Are Staining Your Teeth

Discolored teeth are more common than you think. This happens when the outer layer of your teeth, the enamel, becomes discolored. 

There are many factors that contribute to the discoloration and staining of teeth like smoking and damaging your enamel with rough brushing, but one of the most common causes is food. 

Here is a list of food and drinks you should avoid if you want to keep your pearly whites, well, pearly. 

  1. Sugary Drinks. High sugar drinks like energy drinks, soda, fruit juice, and wine are things that you should avoid or at the very least drink in moderation. Everyone knows sugar is bad for your teeth. It corrodes the hard outer layer of your teeth, leaving them discolored or worse. 
  2. Dark Drinks. Coffee and Tea are two of the most popular drinks in the world. That being said, they’re incredibly concentrated substances and the color of these drinks will stain your teeth after years of daily consumption. 
  3. Food With Strong Sauces. Tomato-based food and strong curries may be tasty and sometimes healthy, but they aren’t the best for your teeth. Much like the other items on this list, moderation is key. 

So, What Can You Eat For Whiter Teeth?

Consume foods that contain whitening properties like strawberries, watermelon, and dairy products. The proteolytic enzymes found in fruits like pineapple and papaya can also get rid of discoloring proteins on your teeth.

That being said, just eating these foods won’t be enough to fully change the color of your teeth. You have to make an active effort to stay away from stain-causing food and drink and practice good dental hygiene for maximum effect. 

Whitening toothpaste and strips can also be of some use. Brushing with a little baking soda and water after your normal brushing is also helpful. 

How To Make It Through Your First Week With Braces

Braces are a major adjustment. This discomfort is especially felt on your first week of this new treatment. Treatment time is long, it has to be to make sure that the effects of said treatment stay after the brackets and wires come off. Braces work by essentially putting your teeth and sometimes your jaw on a small but contact amount of pressure to slowly move things into their right place. Naturally, the presence of this foreign object in your mouth for extended periods of time will not feel natural. Here are a few things you can do to get through your first week of braces. 

Pain Medication

On your first week, your gums will probably be the area most affected by your braces. The gums aren’t used to constant pressure on them, this will probably cause some inflammation and pain. Over-the-counter pain killers like Advil should do the trick to minimize discomfort. 

Steer Clear From Hot AND Cold Food And Drinks

As we’ve established, your gums are pretty sensitive. It’s best to avoid stimulants that can irritate them. Gums are also especially sensitive to temperature. Hot and cold food can make your teeth and gums feel incredibly uncomfortable especially during braces treatment. Best to eat lukewarm and soft foods the first week of treatment. 

Use a ToothBrush With Soft Bristles

You may be noticing a pattern here. Essentially, be gentle with your teeth gums when you start orthodontic treatment. Hard bristles, though common, can be painful when your gums are inflamed. Soft, fine bristles are the better choice for your teeth and gums. Brushing will be more difficult with braces, and it may be more uncomfortable, best use the tools you can to make it as painless as possible. 

For any other orthodontic concerns or inquiries, or if you’re looking to start orthodontic treatment, schedule a consultation with us here at mBrace. 

What Are Ligatures and What Do They Do?

You may wonder why braces have elastic bands. I mean. it’s fairly obvious what the metal brackets and wires do to straighten your teeth, but what about those bands? Do they serve a purpose? To put it simply, yes they do. Read on to learn more about this important part of your orthodontic treatment. 

They Connect Your Wires To The Brackets

Braces are made up of solid metal (sometimes porcelain) brackets that are attached to the teeth, the metal wires connect the brackets together in order to straighten your teeth over time. The elastic bands that are part of your braces aren’t actually called rubber bands, they’re actually called ligatures. These ligatures apply the correct amount of force to shift your teeth into the correct place. Since they’re elastic, they may need to be adjusted or replaced over the course of your treatment. This is why sticking to your appointment schedule is important, so your orthodontist can see if your ligatures are still working correctly. 

They Correct Your Bite

There’s another type of elastic band that may be found on your braces. These bands connect the upper and lower jaw together and serve the purpose of correcting your bite. You can find these bands on your braces if you suffer from an overbite or underbite. These rubber bands are worn all the time except when brushing your teeth and flossing. These bands need to be replaced frequently to avoid bacterial growth. That, and also like all elastics, they wear out over time and lose their effectivity, so they need to be changed. These bands are ideally changed three times a day, preferably after every meal. 

They Are Important

These elastic bands are important for both bite alignment issues and straightening your teeth. They’re an essential part of your braces and should not be neglected. Forgetting to change them will lead to them wearing out and losing their elasticity, defeating the purpose of your treatment. More than that, not changing them when you should causes unnecessary bacterial growth which puts your oral health in jeopardy. Stick to your appointment schedule and change your bands regularly. 

For more information and to explore your treatment option, schedule a consultation with us here at mBrace. 

Obesity and Gum Disease

Obesity has been a huge problem in the United States for a number of decades now, and with the way things are, it’s likely to remain a problem for a while. You probably know that obesity is associated with other grave illnesses like arthritis, heart disease, and diabetes, but did you know that there may also be a link between obesity and your oral health? Read on to learn more. 

Periodontal disease is a bacterial infection that starts in the mouth and spreads to the gum tissue and finally the bones that keep the teeth in place. You can experience bleeding gums, diarrhea, constant bad breath, missing teeth, and changes in your bite if you have gum disease or gingivitis. If these symptoms apply to you, consult your orthodontist right away. Untreated gum disease can lead to more serious medical concerns like irreversible tooth loss, or even heart disease. 

According to a new Boston University report, overweight people are twice as likely to have gum disease, and those that are labeled “obese” are three times more likely, indicating that this is a far greater issue than most would think. because of this, maintaining a healthy diet and practicing good dental care should go hand in hand to prevent any issues.

To keep your weight in check, do things like exercise, stay hydrated, and eat a balanced diet. Cutting down on carbs and sugar is a definite must (this is also good for your teeth anyway). More than that, although it is difficult to go out nowadays, and maybe your gym isn’t open, but working out at home is beneficial to your health. A few laps around the house, or a few crunches, or squats, or pushups, or whatever you prefer do wonders to prevent the ill effects of a sedentary lifestyle. 

Do all of this in conjunction with good dental practices like brushing at least twice a day, flossing, using mouthwash, etc. You mustn’t forget to schedule regular appointments with your local orthodontist. The supervision of an orthodontist can help you catch any problem early and avail of immediate care and treatment to minimize damage. These practices will help you manage your weight and prevent gum disease and other dental and physical health problems. 

 Should you have any more concerns or inquiries, or if you want a specialist to take a look at the state of your teeth, feel free to schedule a consultation with us here at mBrace for any and all of your orthodontic needs. 

 

What To Do If You Break A Wire

Wires link all of the brackets in standard metal braces. While these wires are very durable, certain patients may have problems with them or other aspects of their orthodontic equipment. It isn’t too uncommon to break a wire, and if you do, it’s no real cause for alarm as we here at mBrace will help you through it.  

What To Do When A Wire Breaks?

The first thing to do is to contact your orthodontist. Based on the seriousness of the situation they may be able to recommend a temporary at-home solution. A bent or poking wire isn’t quite as dangerous as it seems. You should be able to deal with the bent or poking wire at home based on how and where it is placed on your braces. Many small wire problems can be fixed at home to help you feel more comfortable until you can see your orthodontist. In many situations, you can just wait for your next scheduled appointment to have your orthodontist address the situation. When you call in, your orthodontist may suggest one of the solutions below:

  1. Apply a bead of orthodontic wax given by your orthodontist. This is likely a solution for a broken wire that is poking out and may present a risk of injuring your cheek or gums. 
  2. Bending the wire back in place. This is a solution for a snapped wire that is protruding too greatly for orthodontic wax to cover it. 
  3. Trimming the wire. This is a rare and usually avoided solution. Your orthodontist will likely only suggest this if for some reason you cannot make it into their office in person. You can trim the protruding wire yourself at home with a good pair of nail clippers, but take care not to swallow the clipped wire. Do the procedure with your face slightly tilted forward and over a napkin or cloth to catch the trimming. 

In the event that a wire does cut the inside of your mouth, treat the cut immediately. Make use of an oral-safe topical pain reliever like Anbesol. Also, frequently rinse out your mouth with some salt dissolved in water to clean the small wound. Wires can snap for a variety of reasons. An active lifestyle or contact sports can put you at risk of injury that can damage your braces. A strong bite or eating corrosive foods can also contribute to the wearing of your braces. To get the smile you deserve, schedule a consultation with us here at mBrace. 

 

Does My Diet Have to Change With Invisalign?

If you’re ready to start your journey to get the smile you deserve you may already be looking at some treatment options for you. The two most popular methods for correcting a crooked grin are braces and Invisalign. Some people choose not to wear braces, but they are interested in learning more about invisible aligners. Is it possible to eat a nutritious diet when wearing Invisalign? Read on to find out.

What Invisalign Does

Before we talk about the impact on your diet, let’s clear up what Invisalign is and what it does for your teeth. This form of correction, like braces, begins at the orthodontist’s office before being taken home. Your aligners are tailored to your mouth and are removable. They will become a part of your day to day life. You’ll take them to work, remove them after lunch to brush and floss, put them back in, do the same when you get home for dinner.  The amount of time you’ll require these aligners is dependent on your dental health.

Eat Healthily

You can eat almost anything with aligners in your mouth. Wearing aligners may not enforce any dietary limitations, but it is necessary to eat as healthily as possible. You should keep the aligner in your mouth as long as possible. During a meal, you may remove them, but you can also keep them on if you want to maximize your treatment time by keeping them on your for more time during the day. 

Meal Planning

Meal planning can go a long way toward making sure you consume adequate nutrients for optimal dental health. Know where you’ll get your calcium when you’ll get your Vitamin C, and how many calories you’ll eat with each meal before you start the day. 

What to Avoid

Since Invisalign is a major change and a worthwhile investment, you’ll want to make the most of it. Maintaining good dental health and a healthy diet are key. You want to keep your mouth as hygienic as possible so that you can combat bacteria and avoid infection. While maintaining a balanced diet, keep in mind that there are a few activities you should avoid doing on a regular basis.

You should avoid smoking for the duration of your Invisalign treatment (and preferably, even after) as this discolors and corrodes your teeth, the same goes for sugary drinks like cocktails, soda, and juice. Sugary and sticky food like gum and desserts are also things you should only have in moderation. 

Learn More With Us

Depending on the state of your teeth, jaw, and bite, the treatment for you may be one of many things from metal braces to Invisalign, or retainers. To figure out the right treatment for you, book a consultation with us here at mBrace to get a smile you flash proudly. 

Should I Be Concerned About My Jaw Pain?

Jaw pain refers to some form of physical irritation that occurs in the jaw. That being said, it may also spread to other parts of the face. Jaw pain is a common ailment. It usually does not necessitate urgent medical treatment. Although this is reassuring, jaw pain may also be a symptom of a more severe root problem.

Jaw pain can be triggered by a number of causes. Sinuses, ear infections, dental complications, injured nerve endings in the jaw, heart attacks, and other causes may all lead to it. As a result, determining what’s really causing your jaw pain may be complicated. Jaw pain can impair the ability to talk and eat, depending on the underlying cause and extent of the pain. If the jaw pain is serious, escalating, or constant, you should see your doctor or dentist as soon as possible.

Some other symptoms of jaw pain (apart from the obvious pain in the jaw), are reduced mobility of the jaw and mouth, tenderness in the mouth joints and muscles, jaw misalignment, clicking and popping sounds when you move your jaw and mouth, ringing sound in the ears (tinnitus), headaches, ear pain, pressure behind the eyes, vertigo or dizziness, lockjaw, swelling of the face,  or fever (may be indicative of infection)

Common Causes of Jaw Pain

  1. TMJ (Temporomandibular Joint) Disorder

The temporomandibular joint (TMJ) is a set of muscles, bones, and nerve endings that enable you to move your jaw. TMJ disease is described as any illness that impacts one or more of these connective tissues. TMJ disease can be triggered by a variety of factors, like

  • The jaw joint has been injured. This might occur if the TMJ’s blood vessels, muscles, or nerve endings are harmed.
  • Excessive joint tension. Temporal arteritis is a disease that affects the eyes. As the arteries in the temples get inflamed, it causes this disease. Chewing with vigor and over a prolonged period of time triggers it. This disorder will wreak havoc on the TMJ and induce headaches.
  • A disc that cushions the jaw has been displaced.
  • The protective disc that cushions TMJ has contracted arthritis. 
  • Frequent grinding or clenching of teeth also called bruxism.

 

  1. Physical Trauma

Any fracture or strain to the body is referred to as a traumatic event. TMJ suffering will most likely result from a heavy blow to the mouth. A fractured or dislocated jaw can cause intense pain. If you yawned very widely, for example, you could dislocate your jaw by stretching your mouth too fast and too wide.

  1. Underlying Dental Conditions

Jaw pain may be caused by gum disease, cavities, missing teeth, tooth abscesses, or even a gap between teeth.  These disorders can cause jaw pain by damaging the blood vessels and nerve endings in the gums.

  1. Sinus Problems

The sinuses are cavities full of air near the TMJ. When the sinuses swell, they can get clogged with mucus or pus, exerting pressure on the joint and resulting in jaw pain.

  1. Cluster and Tension Headaches

Stress is the most common cause of these headaches, and they can be severe. Cluster headaches are characterized by discomfort behind or near the eyes, but the pain can also spread to the mouth.

  1. Myocardial Infarction

Better known as a heart attack. The most severe trigger of jaw pain is this. You may be experiencing myocardial infarction if the jaw pain is abrupt and followed by shortness of breath, chest pain/discomfort, faintness, sweating, and nausea. Seek emergency attention should you experience these symptoms. 

Consult your doctor, dentist, or oral surgeon if you have serious and chronic jaw pain, or if you have a variation of the symptoms mentioned above. Your jaw pain may belly underlying dental or medical issues that are far more serious and harmful.