White spots on the teeth are common during orthodontic treatment. White spots indicate loss of tooth mineral which can lead to tooth decay. Over 50% of patients with braces develop white spots.1,2 The American Dental Association lists "active orthodontic treatment" as a risk factor for cavities.3 Even with excellent oral hygiene, having braces puts you at a greater risk for dental decay.
Dental plaque and bacteria accumulate around orthodontic brackets and wires.
It can be difficult to adequately brush around braces.
If the plaque and bacteria are not removed, white spots start to form.
These white spots can remain as permanent discoloration, sometimes leaving a "window pane" of discoloration when the bracket is removed.
The white spots can also progress to tooth decay, requiring dental restoration.
1 Gorelick L, Geiger AM, Gwinnett AJ. Incidence of white spot formation after bonding and banding. Am Jour Orthodontics 1982;81:93-98
2.Enaia M, Bock N. Ruf S. White-spot lesions during multibracket appliance treatment: A challenge for clinical excellence. Am J Orthod Dentofacial Orthop 2011;140(1)17-24
Helping You Prevent Decay
You want the best outcome from your orthodontic treatment. So does 3M. 3M has two key oral hygiene products for you to use at home to help prevent white spots and tooth decay.