The formation of white spots on teeth during braces treatment is a common problem, due to the buildup of plaque. After removing braces, the last thing that you want to see is anything at all about your teeth that displeases you. After all, you have just undergone months of treatment, and want your smile to be perfect. Still, whenever you look in the mirror after braces removal, you may notice little white marks on your teeth. The question many people ask is how do you treat white spots after braces? Fortunately, there are ways to get white spots off teeth after braces, from good oral hygiene, to re-mineralization and veneers.
What are White Spots?
White spots found on your teeth after braces are easy to point out, because they will be lighter than the rest of the enamel and may perhaps have a different texture from the tooth that it is on. White spots after braces appear where the minerals in your teeth have been worn down and sometimes removed entirely.
This is known as demineralization, or decalcification. What’s left of the decalcified portion is a hollow structure which is whiter than the remaining part of the tooth. These spots may feel like rough indentations of the tooth. While they are usually permanent, they sometimes will fade a little bit over time even without professional attention.
What Causes White Spots on Teeth after Braces?
Here is how white spots are most commonly formed. White spots will show up even without braces if there is too much fluoride on your teeth. White spots on teeth after braces are usually caused by a plaque build-up. Developing plaque happens when bacteria are able to pile up on the surface of your teeth.
Braces can sometimes perpetuate this problem by giving bacteria new places to hide away and to grow. The bacteria may cause a layer of plaque to form, and gradually this plaque will begin to break down and to remove important minerals that your teeth require in order to stay in good health. If left unattended, these white spots could turn into cavities. Poor oral hygiene also contributes to this problem.
How to Remove White Spots after Braces?
This important information gives you a few choices on how to get white spots off teeth after braces.
If you do nothing to combat the white spots, they are probably going to remain visible on your teeth forever. Luckily, there are several different ways to treat white spots that can either reduce or entirely eliminate the appearance of them.
Some of the most common maintenance and procedures are:
1. Good Oral Hygiene
An easy way to help with this problem is by implementing a good oral hygiene routine. This includes brushing at least twice a day and flossing your teeth daily. Flossing is important since it gets bacteria out from between your teeth, while the brushing action is going to help to streamline the appearance of your teeth, allowing the white spots after braces to begin to fade and become less visible. It will also remove bacteria that could seep into decalcified spots and cause even more damage.
A common cosmetic dental choice that can remove any white spots on teeth after braces is veneers. Veneers are small slivers of either porcelain or a composite resin that are applied to the surfaces of teeth to improve the look of them. In order to apply veneers:
- Your teeth are treated to roughen up the surface.
- The veneer is attached to the tooth and secured by glue or dental cement.
The veneer looks completely natural and creates a new tooth surface with which to hide the spots on the tooth below. This is a quick and easy way to lose the white spots after braces.
Perhaps one of the most common methods of removing white spots after braces is a process called re-mineralization. This method is effective as it directly targets the problem that has caused these spots to begin with.
Re-mineralization means to apply a cream or something similar to your teeth for a determined period of time. The cream contains minerals that the bacteria and plaque have taken from your teeth. Then, the teeth will absorb those lost minerals and rebuild the area that is lacking. This can help spots to fade completely.
4. Tooth Whitening
An even more common procedure to help is tooth whitening. This chemical technique uses hydrogen peroxide-based solutions to make the teeth whiter. This can have a swift and direct result on the white spots on teeth. The whitening solution quickly assists with normalizing the color of your teeth to make the enamel brighter. This effectively hides the spots. You can do it at home, but professional whitening by a dentist will usually be more effective.
The last way to get the white spots off of your teeth is with a process known as microabrasion. This process uses a mix of pumice and hydrochloric acid, which is then put onto your teeth and rubbed in well. It begins to polish the enamel and even it out. In the end, white spots will be less noticeable or will be gone entirely with the new enamel having been exposed.
White spots are the result of a decalcification or demineralization of the teeth due to plaque build-up while wearing braces. They are aesthetically displeasing. So, how do you treat white spots after braces? Through the use of tooth whitening, veneers, microabrasion or re-mineralization, one can have the white spots gone or reduced in no time.
What method did you use to deal the white spots on teeth after braces? What was the experience like? Tell us in the “Comments” section.