The dawn of a new year is the perfect time to reflect on our habits and set goals for self-improvement. For those undergoing orthodontic treatment, achieving a perfect smile requires dedication and commitment. To help you make the most of your orthodontic journey, we’ve compiled a list of top resolutions for anyone in orthodontic treatment.

1. Keep your appointments with the orthodontist.

Your orthodontist is your partner on the road to a beautiful smile. Commit to attending your scheduled appointments without fail. These visits allow your Dr. Jones and Dr. DeShon to monitor your progress, make necessary adjustments, and ensure that your treatment plan stays on track.

We work hard to plan appointments that accommodate your schedule. If you run into a conflict, you can always call our office at 276-638-8888 to reschedule for a time that suits you better.

2. Follow treatment instructions diligently.

Your orthodontic treatment plan comes with specific instructions designed to maximize its effectiveness. Whether it’s wearing rubber bands, cleaning your braces, or avoiding certain foods, make a resolution to follow these guidelines as closely as possible. Consistency is key to achieving the best results.

In fact, did you know that the No. 1 thing you can do to speed up your treatment is to follow treatment instructions.

3. Stick to your dental hygiene plan.

Oral hygiene is crucial during orthodontic treatment. Braces can create nooks and crannies where food particles may get trapped, leading to plaque buildup and potential dental issues. Resolve to maintain excellent oral hygiene by brushing and flossing regularly.

4. See your dentist every six months.

Sometimes, patients think they don’t need to see the dentist while they are in orthodontic treatment. After all, Dr. J and Dr. D are dentists!

However, visiting your dentist every six months is just as important during orthodontic treatment as any other time – maybe more. First, you’ll get a professional cleaning each month, and that’s critically important to maintaining your overall dental health. In addition, your dentist will examine your teeth for signs of decay or other issues.

5. Contact your orthodontist with any new pain or injury.

Minor discomfort is a common part of orthodontic treatment, especially after adjustments. However, if you experience any persistent new pain or notice any changes, don’t hesitate to contact our office. You should also be seen if you have an injury to the mouth or face while you’re in treatment. Early intervention can prevent issues from escalating, ensuring a smoother and more comfortable treatment journey.

6. Maintain a braces-friendly diet.

Certain foods can pose a threat to your metal or ceramic braces, potentially causing damage or slowing down your orthodontic progress. Commit to a braces-friendly diet by avoiding sticky, hard, or chewy foods. Opt for softer alternatives that won’t compromise the integrity of your orthodontic appliances.

7. Stay positive throughout your orthodontic journey.

Orthodontic treatment can be a transformative experience, but it requires patience. Embrace the changes, celebrate small victories, and stay positive. A positive mindset not only makes the process more enjoyable but also contributes to better overall well-being.

8. Wear your retainer after treatment.

Completing the active phase of your orthodontic treatment is a significant achievement, but it’s not the end of the road. Your orthodontist will likely recommend wearing a retainer to maintain your results and prevent any regression. Make a resolution to wear your retainer as instructed, preserving your newly aligned smile for years to come. (A lot of the adults we treat had braces as children but didn’t wear a retainer after active treatment.)

9. Commit to a lifetime of dental health.

Now that you’ve made the investment of time and money into orthodontic treatment, maximize it by committing to dental health for life. Maintain your dental hygiene routine and see your dentist regularly. Failure to maintain your dental health can have a direct impact on your overall health, and correcting dental issues can be pain, expensive and time-consuming. Prevention is so much more effective.

Embarking on an orthodontic adventure is an investment in your future smile. Adopt these resolutions to stay on the path to a straighter, healthier set of teeth. Happy New Year and happy smiling!