(818) 980-5300 5445 Laurel Canyon Blvd.
Valley Village, CA   91607

Preventing Damage to Your Braces

During orthodontic treatment, you need to take special care of teeth and gums. Extra brushing and additional flossing tools may become part of your routine. At the same time, you need to ensure that nothing happens to your braces. The following tips will help you protect your investment:

Eat right
While you have braces, you should avoid certain foods. Hard candy and sticky substances can crack brackets or break off wires. When you have apples or carrots, cut them in bite size pieces just to be safe.

Wear a mouth guard
For sports activities, you need to protect your face and mouth by having a mouth guard. Normally, dentists and orthodontists recommend custom mouth guards, but during orthodontic treatment you need the store-bought appliances so that your mouth guard won’t damage your braces.

Report problems immediately
Even when you do everything right, you may still have a broken bracket or loose wire. Apply dental wax if you experience discomfort and contact your orthodontist for the next step.

Curtail bad habits
Chewing on ice or biting your nails can harm your teeth and cause problems with your orthodontia.

Don’t make adjustments yourself
If your wires or brackets don’t seem right to you, call the orthodontist. Attempting to correct the issue can create bigger problems.

Visit the dentist for checkups
At these appointments, your dentist can make sure teeth and gums are holding up well during your time in braces. If enamel weakens or you develop gum disease, you could have trouble with your brackets and wires.

Burbank Orthodontist

Bite Problems and Braces

Problems with your bite, or the way your teeth and jaw fit together, can wreak havoc on your mouth. It can be painful, unattractive, and lead to other problems like tooth decay. A bad bite, or malocclusion, is one of the most common reasons that orthodontists fit patients with braces.

What does it mean to have a bad bite?
When your doctor says you have spacing or alignment problems, it’s likely that you have a bad bite. This includes crooked, crowded, or protruding teeth. A bad bite also includes having your upper and lower jaws meet improperly, even if your teeth look straight. Also, bite problems can be caused by teeth that are too close together or too far apart.

What causes bite problems?
The most common causes of bite problems are thumb-sucking, heredity, early tooth loss, and mouth trauma.

What are the benefits of correcting bad bites?
Braces can help with problems related to bite issues in a number of ways, including:

  • Appearance – correcting a bad bite creates a more appealing smile, and therefore also improves your self-esteem.
  • Tooth wear – an uneven bite can cause abnormal tooth wear, which sometimes leads to the need for crowns or veneers. Braces can correct this problem before your teeth have a chance to wear inappropriately.
  • Jaw problems – a misaligned bite can lead to painful conditions like temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorder.
  • Teeth cleaning – it is difficult to clean crooked, crowded, protruding, and overlapping teeth. Properly aligned teeth can be more thoroughly cleaned, and therefore have less decay.

Contact our orthodontics dental office in Sherman Oaks, CA to schedule an appointment!

Don’t Fall Victim to Bad Breath

One thing that can make you a pretty unpopular person is bad breath. People will avoid being around you if you emit a stinky odor every time you open your mouth. If you don’t want to fall victim to this embarrassing problem, try the following tactics.

Brush and floss
For many reasons, you should carefully brush your teeth at least twice a day. This includes brushing your tongue and gums, where bacteria tend to build up and lead to mouth odor. Flossing should be performed daily to help get rid of food debris and plaque.

Drink water
Having a dry mouth increases bad breath, so staying hydrated is an important way to avoid odor. It is recommended to drink thirteen cups of water each day, which may be difficult to accomplish but it is a good goal to keep in mind. You can also prevent dry mouth by limiting foods and drinks known to cause dehydration, like coffee, energy drinks, and anything high in sugar or caffeine.

Chew parsley
A natural remedy for decreasing odor, chewing parsley can be helpful for stinky breath. It contains chlorophyll, which is known to fight smells and freshen breath.

Brush with oils
Peppermint oil and tea tree oil are both known to decrease halitosis, or bad breath. Placing just a couple of drops of these oils on your toothbrush can help attack the bacteria in your mouth and therefore fight mouth odor.

Valley Village Orthodontist

Brushing Well with Braces

Oral hygiene is always important, but when you have braces, it’s even more critical. Because food can easily get trapped between braces, you may be more prone to gum irritation, bad breath, teeth discoloration, and cavities. Following these tips will help keep your mouth healthy during orthodontic treatment:

• Take it tooth-by-tooth. Make sure you really concentrate on every tooth, spending at least 10 seconds on each one.

• Angles matter. Position your brush so that it’s angled down toward the area where the tops of your teeth and braces meet. When you brush the bottoms of your teeth and braces, angle the brush upward.

• Cover the whole area. Most people remember to brush the front of their teeth, but may neglect the chewing surfaces or tongue-side of teeth.

• Do the two-step. During orthodontic treatment, you need to brush right after meals. The longer food stays trapped in your braces, the greater risk for plaque formation and tooth decay.

• Plan ahead. Carrying a toothbrush and toothpaste with you will make it easier for you to brush any time you finish eating.

• Pieces and parts. If you have head gear or rubber bands, remove these items before you brush.
• Think fluoride. Preventing cavities during treatment is critical, so choose fluoride toothpaste; a fluoride mouthwash wouldn’t hurt.

• Don’t forget the floss. Though flossing is more difficult with braces, you need to make the extra effort. Some people have no trouble with regular floss, but products like floss threaders can make it easier for you to reach under the wires and get the job done.

• See your dentist. You need to perform home oral care, but professional cleanings will help keep your teeth and gums healthy, so don’t skip your regular appointment.

Keeping your smile beautiful and healthy at our Sherman Oaks, CA orthodontic practice – Mehdi Fotovat, DDS.

Mehdi Fotovat, D.D.S.


5445 Laurel Canyon Blvd.

Valley Village, CA 91607

(818) 980-5300

Our practice is conveniently located on Laurel Canyon Blvd. between Burbank Blvd. and Chandler Blvd. in Valley Village. Free parking is available behind the building.

Our Hours

Tuesday: 8:00 am – 5:00 pm (closed for lunch 12-1:20)

Wednesday: 7:30 am – 5:30 pm (closed for lunch 12-1:30)

Thursday: 1:00 pm – 6:00 pm

Friday: 7:30 am – 3:30 pm (closed for lunch 12-12:30)