For many tweens and teenagers, summer means relaxation and fun. Activities such as swimming, eating ice cream, and sleeping late are top priorities. However, summer is also an ideal time to begin orthodontic treatment.
In this article, we will look at why summertime is a great time to start orthodontic treatment. We will also share tips on caring for braces during summer. After all, no one wants to spend summer vacation getting a broken bracket fixed at the orthodontist!
Three Reasons Why Summer Is Ideal for Starting Orthodontic Treatment
At Burke & Redford Orthodontists, we know that our patients in Temecula and Lake Elsinore may not have “visit the orthodontist” at the top of their summer to-do lists! However, here are a couple of reasons why summer vacation is one of the most popular times to begin treatment with us.
- More Free Time. The school year is hectic with classes, homework, and extracurricular activities—making it difficult to fit in orthodontic appointments. Therefore, summer is a great time to start treatment! Students will not have to miss school or squeeze in appointments between other activities. Because longer appointments are needed at the beginning, the summer months are ideal for starting treatment. After the initial visit, follow-up adjustment visits are usually scheduled every 8 weeks.
- Extra Time for Adjustment. Every patient needs time to get acclimated to their braces, Invisalign, or orthodontic appliance. When starting treatment in the summer, patients’ lives are less busy and hectic—giving them ample time to adjust to their new oral hygiene routines.
Additionally, a patient’s teeth can be quite sore for the first few days after braces are placed. It can be nice to have extra time to relax while waiting for the initial soreness to subside.
Although Dr. Redford and Dr. Burke can begin orthodontic treatment at any time of the year, summertime is ideal for starting a patient’s orthodontic journey. However, there are some things to be mindful of during the summer while wearing braces.
Braces Do’s and Don’ts During Summertime
No one wants to miss part of summer vacation because a bracket or wire broke on their braces. Burke & Redford Orthodontists wants to remind their patients about the do’s and don’ts of wearing braces to avoid an inconvenient “braces emergency” that interrupts summer fun.
- Do enjoy popular summer treats like ice cream. In general, soft foods that are easy to chew are best for patients with braces—including ice cream and frozen yogurt. Other foods that are easy to eat with braces include yogurt, soft breads, pasta, steamed vegetables, applesauce, scrambled eggs, and pancakes.
- Don’t chew on ice – or other hard foods. Although summer weather can be hot, patients with braces should avoid chewing on ice and other hard foods such as popcorn and nuts. Chomping down on hard foods can easily break a bracket or wire–requiring a visit to the office. So instead of eating a frozen popsicle, consider soft ice cream instead.
- Do avoid chewy/sticky foods, such as licorice, taffy, or marshmallows. These foods can easily get stuck in brackets and wires and are difficult to remove. Unfortunately, this means avoiding summertime treats like s’mores!
- Don’t forget to keep up your oral hygiene routine. When wearing braces, it is critical to keep up with brushing and flossing. Although it may require more work than before, taking the time to thoroughly brush in and around brackets and wires helps prevent the formation of plaque. Although the summer months may be a slower and “lazier” time, oral hygiene is one area that must be kept up all year long.
- Do follow proper flossing procedures using the tools recommended by Dr. Redford and Dr. Burke. Flossing with braces can be challenging. However, a variety of special tools—such as a Proxabrush or water flosser—can assist making the job of cleaning between the teeth easy. Our friendly staff members are happy to provide a refresher course on proper flossing techniques with any patient that needs assistance.
- Don’t forget to come to orthodontist appointments. Although it might be tempting to skip scheduled appointments to enjoy more summertime fun, this will only delay the unveiling of that beautiful new smile! Once braces are on, most follow-up appointments are short. This means patients will be back out enjoying summertime fun very quickly!
By following these braces care guidelines, patients will be able to enjoy the summer months without wasting time at an emergency orthodontic appointment.
Whether you need a great orthodontist for kids or braces for teens, give our office a call during business hours (951) 699-8011 or contact our office online anytime to schedule a free orthodontic treatment consultation appointment!