It’s surprising how much a new season can disrupt our habits and daily rhythms. Even when you’re doing a great job taking care of your teeth, it’s easy for a few weeks to quickly pass and your routines magically disappear.
Plus, a whole host of new summer foods suddenly show up at every family get-together and school event. Yes, we look forward to our favorite summertime treats all year. But they’re often full of sweet, sticky sugar that’s waiting to stick to your teeth and cause cavities. Snack foods and poor oral health are especially impactful if you’re currently undergoing orthodontic treatments.
With a little planning and a fool-proof plan, you can keep up oral health habits and enjoy a wonderful summer even with new braces, a retainer, and other orthodontic interventions. We’ve put together some simple guidelines to get your summer kicked off the right way – in health and style!
Play ball, don’t drop it.
Soccer, swimming, tennis, football – the list of fun summer sports is almost endless. We know exactly how it feels to play your best while still feeling a little nervous about damaging your braces. It’s also uncomfortable to play contact sports when there’s a risk of bumping your gums into a pointy brace.
Try some of the suggestions below to make your practice and performance as comfortable and safe as possible. It’ll also help prevent costly, inconvenient repairs.
- Orthodontic mouth guards are built to provide extra room for your braces and help protect your teeth, gums, tongue, and braces from damage.
- Ask your orthodontist for extra wax for your braces, or head in for an adjustment before hitting the practice field.
Foods to love and a few to avoid.
Just like during the winter holiday seasons, there are still some foods you’ll want to avoid. Those crunchy, gooey treats are notorious for outstaying their welcome. For hours after you’ve enjoyed your snack, the sugar is enjoying a snack, too! It’s busy eroding your crucial enamel. This will help reduce or prevent cavities, especially when food gets stuck in braces for hours at a time.
- Stick to the soft snacks and lower sugar alternatives. For example, maybe pass on the ice cream and opt for frozen yogurt instead.
- Enjoy soft, refreshing snacks like watermelon and cantaloupe instead of hard, chewy candy.
- Also, cold snacks can help ease some discomfort and swelling in your gums.
Don’t forget your simple, everyday care.
Sports camp. Summer camping trips. Overnight stays at a friend’s house. The late nights and jam-packed days are never a reason to skip brushing and flossing, even when you’re exhausted! Here are a few tips for keeping up on oral care routines during your off-routine summer plans:
- Set a timer on your phone to remind you when it’s time to brush and floss.
- Bring a travel toothbrush that can easily fit into your backpack or travel bag.
- Don’t forget a case for your retainer and other orthodontic implements.
- Worried about getting orthodontic care while you’re traveling? When you get where you’re going, look up a reputable orthodontist and save their phone number, just in case!
Want to get started?
Summer is actually one of the best times to start orthodontic treatments. Take advantage of this season and schedule your first appointment with us today. Curious why Oppenhuizen Orthodontics is a preferred provider? Check out our most recent blog article to hear directly from some of our valued patients.