Orthodontic treatment has become more popular in recent years. There are many reasons for this, including availability and the risk misalignments pose to otherwise healthy teeth. However, orthodontic adjustments do have some potential complications like any medical treatment. One such complication occurs when using traditional braces. These braces can lead to the creation of white spot lesions. These lesions represent a risk to the health of the overall tooth. Thankfully there are a number of cosmetic and restorative treatments that can help address these blemishes with ease.
What To Know About White Spot Lesions
White spot lesions are caused by the demineralization of the enamel. They appear as spots of white discoloration on the dental surface. These spots represent the first step of dental decay, as the demineralization that causes them weakens the enamel. Once they appear, it becomes easier for the enamel to break down through wear and tear and the action of bacterial and food-sourced acids. White spot lesions can be the result of the action of acids, trauma, or insufficient calcium intake.
It can be tricky to get rid of white spot lesions, but there are steps you and your dentist can take. Certain treatments make it possible to remineralize the enamel causing it to rebuild its strength. Cosmetic and restorative dentists alike offer a range of treatments to treat these blemishes. Some of these treatments include:
- Fluoride Remineralization Treatments: These treatments work by infusing the tooth with fluoride, causing the enamel to become stronger. Toothpaste often contains fluoride as well, so when these treatments are combined with brushing and flossing regularly, you’ll get the best results. Children often receive these treatments as a preventative, while adults may receive them to help reduce the appearance of white spot lesions.
- In-Office Dental Whitening: Dental whitening isn’t capable of restoring lost enamel, but it can help hide blemishes on the dental surface. These procedures improve the aesthetic appeal of your smile by making the white spot lesions less obvious. You can get dental whitening products over-the-counter or have a more effective treatment done in your dental office.
- Composite Resin Bonding: If you have lesions that are particularly stubborn, it may be time to cover them up. Composite Resin Bonding makes it possible to erase white spot lesions by covering them with a resin color-matched to your teeth. The overall result is a more attractive smile and protection for the weakened spots on your teeth.
- Dental Veneers: In particularly severe cases, you may want to consider veneers. Veneers cover up the surface of your tooth entirely using a porcelain facing. This facing creates the appearance of beautiful, clean teeth. They can also be a great way to repair minor imperfections, including chipping and gapping.
These are just some of the treatments your dentist may suggest for treating your white spot lesions.
Prevent White Spot Lesions With Consistent Oral Hygiene
When you have braces, it’s more important than ever to take great care of your teeth. Brushing, flossing, and using mouthwash daily remain the most important part of your routine. You should also take special care to get between the wires of your braces, focusing specifically on the mounting points. However, this may prove insufficient to completely prevent white spot lesions. When that happens, reach out to your dentist to get advice on the best treatments to tackle white spot lesions. With a little vigilance and help from your dentist, you may be able to restore a beautiful smile and prevent the onset of decay from these blemishes. Call and schedule a consultation with your dentist today!