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Dos and Don’ts of Gum Chewing During Orthodontic Treatment

Can You Chew Gum With Braces and Rubber Bands?

When you are first embarking on a journey to achieve a beautiful smile, it is okay to have doubts about how to take care of your appliances. By the end of the treatment, you will enjoy the smile of your dreams, but you will need to make some sacrifices first. Yes, we are talking about the dietary restrictions that come with your braces.

We know that it can be frustrating, but we encourage you to take this transformative process seriously because it is truly worth it. Just think for a minute that in several months or a couple of years, you will have a perfect smile!

Following dietary recommendations during orthodontic treatment is an important aspect of maintaining the health and effectiveness of your appliances. These recommendations are designed to avoid the risk of damaging the braces, breaking the wires, or food getting stuck on your brackets. The story is different for Invisalign clear aligners since they are removable.

Here are a few general comments to keep in mind:

Let’s start with the basics; you will want to avoid hard foods, like chips, pretzels, or nachos, and crunchy foods, like popcorn and crunchy fruits and vegetables. Also, you need to minimize your consumption of sugary foods and drinks, including candy and sodas. These foods make the perfect environment for bacteria to grow. After you get your traditional braces installed and a few days after getting adjustments, your teeth can be a little sensitive, so you might want to stay away from cold and spicy foods.

Now, you might be wondering, what about sticky food? Can I chew gum with braces? Well, don’t worry. This article addresses this question and more.

Can You Chew Gum With Braces?

Yes, you can chew gum with braces. Most Albany Orthodontists are a bit skeptical about chewing gum while wearing braces. However, some orthodontic specialists aren’t that negative about it. Regardless of either position, something is true: Patients must refrain from chewing sugar-added chewing gum. Sugar in chewing gum creates an optimum environment for bacteria and biofilm to reproduce.

Can Chewing Gum Clean Your Teeth?

Yes, chewing gum helps your teeth to be clean. Saliva production acts as an agent against bacteria and protects enamel. Conversely, orthodontic patients should not chew gum; evidence suggests that chewing gum produces positive effects. Here are some of the most important of them.

  • Clinical evidence reveals that chewing gum for twenty minutes after meals helps prevent tooth decay.
  • Saliva production helps counterbalance bacterial acids and strengthens the enamel portion of teeth.
  • Gum chewing helps remove plaque from teeth.
  • Some chewing gum helps whiten teeth.
  • Chewing gum is an anxiety and stress auxiliary, helping control teeth grinding.
  • It upturns breathing.

What Type of Gum Is Good for Braces?

It is also true that braces nowadays are made of more resistant and flexible materials, allowing patients to chew gum. So ask your Albany Orthodontist if your braces are apt to chew gum. You just need to make sure the gum is sugarless and American Dental Association ADA-accepted. Also, please refrain from doing it constantly during your treatment.

Gum Chewing During Orthodontic Treatment

Can You Chew Gum With Braces and Rubber Bands?

Sometimes, orthodontists may recommend the use of rubber bands as part of your treatment with braces. These elastics can help to correct bite issues and align teeth, creating additional forces on the teeth and jaws. The timing for when patients receive rubber bands can vary depending on their specific orthodontic needs and treatment plan.

Usually, orthodontists will introduce rubber bands once the braces had some initial adjustments. However, the exact time might depend on several factors, such as the type and severity of the orthodontic issue, the progress of the tooth movement, and the patient’s response to earlier phases of treatment.

Although you can chew gum with your metal braces, you need to pay attention when you clean your appliances since gum can stick to your brackets and wires. It is important to make sure that you clean all of the small pieces of gum if they get stuck in your teeth and brackets.

Now, if your treatment includes rubber bands, we don’t recommend that you chew gum. If you still feel the need to chew gum, then you must remove your elastics before you do it. But remember that rubber bands are part of your treatment, and you should wear them all the time that your orthodontist recommends. Removing your elastics so you can chew gum may delay your treatment time.

Can You Chew Gum With Invisalign Clear Aligners?

Well, Albany orthodontists don’t recommend that you chew gum while you are wearing your Invisalign trays. This can cause damage to your appliances, and you don’t want that. It is super important to remember that you need to remove your clear aligners before eating anything.

However, if you really feel like chewing gum, then you can remove your clear aligners for a little while. But don’t do it for a long period of time; remember that you need to wear your clear aligners for at least 20 to 22 hours per day. It is essential to understand that compliance is the only thing that can ensure that you get the desired outcome!

If you feel unsure about what you can and cannot do, visit Estes Orthodontics!

Can You Chew Gum With a Retainer?

After you finish your Albany orthodontic treatment, like braces or clear aligners, it is important that you wear a retainer to prevent teeth from shifting back to their original place. This appliance will help your new smile to settle into its new position.

You can chew gum with a retainer as long as you remove it before you do it. Otherwise, the sticky nature of gum could cause it to adhere to the retainer, making it difficult to clean. Also, orthodontists recommend that after you chew gum, you clean thoroughly your teeth.

If you are unsure about whether you can chew gum with your specific type of retainer, it’s a good idea to consult your orthodontist for personalized guidance. They can provide you with the most accurate information based on your individual case.

Maintain Good Oral Hygiene During Orthodontics

Now that we have answered several questions, like can you chew gum with braces or clear aligners, we’d like to give you some recommendations for maintaining good oral hygiene during orthodontics.

We understand that wearing orthodontic appliances can be a challenge, especially when it comes to cleaning your teeth. But with consistent care and attention, you can reduce the risk of dental issues.

Here are some recommendations for maintaining good oral hygiene during orthodontic treatment:

1. Brush Your Teeth After Every Meal:

It is important that you clean thoroughly your teeth after every meal, including snacks. We recommend that you pay special attention to cleaning around brackets and wires.

2. Floss Every Day:

You should floss your teeth daily so you can remove food particles and plaque, especially under the wires and brackets. To make the process easier and more effective, you can consider using other dental appliances, such as interdental brushes.

3. Rinse with Mouthwash:

Using an antimicrobial or fluoride mouthwash can help kill bacteria, and it can be helpful in reaching areas that are difficult to clean with a toothbrush or floss.

4. Follow a Balanced Diet:

It is important to avoid foods that can damage your appliances. Make sure to minimize sugary and hard foods that can contribute to plaque buildup and cavities.

5. Regular Orthodontic Checkups:

You should attend regular appointments with your orthodontist for adjustments and evaluations. These visits are essential for ensuring that your Albany Ortho treatment is progressing as planned and for addressing any concerns.

By taking the necessary steps to care for your teeth and orthodontic appliances, you will not only ensure a healthy smile but also contribute to the success of your treatment.

Here are some key considerations to keep in mind when chewing gum with braces:

  • Choose Sugar-Free Gum
  • Wait After Adjustments
  • Chew Softly
  • Avoid Sticky Gums
  • Remove Before Eating
  • Proper Disposal
  • Regular Dental Check-ups
  • Maintain Oral Hygiene
  • Consider Alternatives
  • Emergency Kit

Mastering Dietary Care During Orthodontic Treatment

If you are ready to take the next step toward achieving a confident smile, we recommend you schedule an appointment with our experienced orthodontic team. Your journey to good oral health and a beautiful smile begins with a first consultation to assess your unique needs and expectations.

During your initial appointment, Dr. Estes will examine your orthodontic situation, discuss potential treatment options, and address any questions or concerns you may have.

The team of Estes Orthodontics is committed to providing you with personalized care, using the latest advancements in orthodontic technology to ensure your comfort and satisfaction throughout the whole process.

Reach out to us today and make your orthodontic appointment!