Orthodontic treatment involves a lot of patient compliance and involvement. As much as you trust your orthodontist to guide you through treatment, set an attainable goal, and provide you with a treatment plan that will eventually get you the smile results you’ve been wanting, your orthodontist also needs to trust that you’ll follow directions and be an active participant in your treatment.
This means that it’s very important to attend both your orthodontic appointments, and your dentist appointments. Both your orthodontist and your dentist will be working together to ensure that your oral health remains entirely intact the whole time you’re in braces, and that your treatment is on track without hitting any bumps in the road. If you’re still not convinced, here are all the other reasons to always attend your appointments!
● Treatment Doesn’t Always Go According to Plan
Your orthodontist doesn’t schedule check-ups for no reason - sometimes, even though a detailed treatment plan has been constructed and you both feel confident in it’s progress, your teeth and jaw can do unexpected things.
If your teeth start to move in both unanticipated and unwelcome directions and you’re skipping appointments, your orthodontist has no way to monitor or correct it. This has the potential to extend your treatment time, and may even have more severe consequences if the problem persists for too long. Frequent appointments and check-ups allow your orthodontist to monitor all of your progress as it happens, and to ensure there’s nothing unusual going on. This also gives them enough opportunity to correct any unusual blips in your treatment, and ensure that these issues are solved before they can affect treatment in a big way.
● Your Braces Need Adjustments and Tightening
A big part of your treatment will involve periodic adjustments, and some tightening. While it would be nice to be able to bond the brackets to your teeth and leave them there to work their magic, they will need to be adjusted to continue to follow and cater to your treatment plan.
If you skip appointments, your braces also skip necessary adjustments that are intended to help guide your teeth into their proper positions. This could potentially add more time to your treatment, while doing so unnecessarily. There’s no reason to be in braces any longer than you need to be, so it’s best to always keep up with your adjustments!
● Your Teeth Are Harder to Keep Clean With Braces
While your orthodontist will show you exactly how to clean and floss between your braces in order to keep your mouth clean during treatment, it can be hard to keep your brackets completely free of any particles and leftover debris from certain foods and drinks.
Regular dental hygiene appointments are crucial even when you’re not undergoing orthodontic treatment, and become even more important when you are. Your dentist is the only person that can properly and fully remove hardened build-up and plaque, and your traditional toothbrush and floss simply won’t cut it. It’s important to continue to see your dentist every six months so you can receive proper check-ups, oral cancer screenings, and cleanings that will ensure no dental health issues can interrupt or delay your treatment.
Between cleanings you should be brushing your teeth a minimum of two times per day, for at least two minutes at a time. Your orthodontist and dentist will recommend different tips, tricks, methods and tools to you during treatment so you know exactly how to brush each bracket, how to ensure they’ve been fully cleaned, and how to maintain immaculate oral health throughout the entire process.
● Your Orthodontist Needs to Know How You’re Doing
While check-ups and cleanings are both important and each have their place, another extremely crucial part of treatment is your progress, and how you’re adjusting to it all.
If you have questions, concerns, or need guidance throughout certain areas of treatment, your orthodontist will want to hear and know about it all. Not only do they want to help and see you through it, but they want to understand all the orthodontic issues you may be dealing with, and combat them together!
Your appointments can also be used to convey updates about how you’re doing, minor issues you may be dealing with, and can serve as an opportunity to ask any lingering questions. This will keep an open dialogue between you and your orthodontist, and ensure you’re both always on the same page!5