Do I need a teeth cleaning before braces?
Do you need a teeth cleaning before braces? The short answer is YES!
Why do orthodontists and dentists make you get a teeth cleaning before braces?
There are many reasons that an orthodontist will want you to get a professional teeth cleaning before starting braces. Not least of which is just to ensure you have a dental home in case there is some dental emergency that they do not treat. We also want you starting off with clean teeth and the knowledge that your gums and bone are healthy enough to get braces.
Additionally, we want to know if there is decay present, prior to placing braces on the teeth. If there is decay we really want to treat it before you get braces. Braces get in the way of the dentist’s ability to properly fix your teeth. Not to mention it can be challenging to clean your teeth properly with braces on and we do not want to make a bad situation like decay worse with braces.
What is the cost of a teeth cleaning before braces?
The cost of a teeth cleaning before braces is the same as the cost of a teeth cleaning at any time. Nothing is special or different about this one. It is arguably a more important cleaning though.
The cost for your cleaning will depend on the severity of any conditions you may have. If you have not been going to the dentist regularly then you may need a debridement or a scaling and root planing if your gums are in bad shape. This is also known as a deep cleaning. If you need either of those you will need to ensure your orthodontist and dentist are working closely together to monitor any potential negative issues.
A normal cleaning cost can be found on fair health consumer. Fees vary from practice to practice and from area to area.
What things are we looking for at the teeth cleaning before braces?
There are several important things that we want to check when getting a cleaning before braces. The first is to ensure that your bone support for your teeth is proper. If it is not, braces can cause you to lose your teeth! Secondly, we want to ensure you are decay free. Next, we want to ensure there is no faulty dental work. Finally, we want your gums to be in excellent health so that when we bond the brackets to the teeth we do not run into excessive bleeding that will cause the brackets to fail.
Th x-rays below show someone that is starting braces but did not get the cleaning before. In red you can see calculus build up in between many of the teeth. This is a sign of poor gum health.