Orthodontic face masks (OFMs) are orthodontic devuces used to prevent tooth movement during treatment. They can be used as a preventive measure or may be required if there is already some tooth movement.
How to Clean an Orthodontic Facemask?
Cleaning your orthodontic facemask can be just as important as wearing it. You want to it stay clean and sanitary so it doesn’t build up bacteria on your skin or teeth. A few steps you can take to wash the device include:
- Wash your orthodontic face mask with mild soap and warm water.
- Rinse thoroughly.
- Use a hair dryer set on low heat to help speed up the drying process.
- Use a soft cloth to remove any water trapped in the mask.
How Long Do You Wear an Orthodontic Facemask?
The length of time you will wear your orthodontic face mask depends on what your orthodontist recommends and what your specific dental issues are.
Some masks are worn overnight for the eight hours you sleep, while others are used during the day (usually 12 hours at a time and removed when eating) and removed at night.
Additionally, while some patients wear their masks for as little as two weeks, others may need to wear them for up to six months before moving on to another appliance or having dental surgery.
How Do You Adjust an Orthodontic Mask?
The orthodontist will make adjustments to the mask as your teeth move. You can also ask them how to adjust the orthodontic face mask if you find it’s becoming uncomfortable in between visits. This usually involves unscrewing the bolts holding it together and adjusting the chin and head rests or adjusting the eleastics pulling your teeth forward or downwar.
Benefits of Orthodontic Facemasks
Eliminate jaw pain and headaches
TMJ, or temporomandibular joint, is the primary joint involved in TMD, or temporomandibular joint disorder. It often causes jaw pain and headaches and is due to inflammation and irritation in the ligaments and muscles around the jaw joint. It’s often found in people who grind their teeth or cramp their jaws while sleeping.
Orthodontic facemasks are designed to hold your jaw in place to prevent grinding or clenching during sleep, which may help reduce symptoms associated with TMD.
Wearing a facemask while you sleep can help improve the quality of your sleep, which is essential for overall health. When you’re no longer grinding or clenching your jaw, you’re more likely to achieve a deeper and more fulfilling sleep.
Improve oral health
When your no longer clenching your teeth, your oral health can also improve. You aren’t grinding away at your teeth and increasing the risks of all sorts of dental issues.
Good-looking teeth also encourage you to keep up with good dental hygience habits and benefit your overall health. They also can help your self-confidence and self-esteem.
Improved speech patterns
Your teeth, jaw, and tongue position can affect your speech patterns. When wearing braces or an orthodontic facemask, your speech patterns can change as well. While an orthodontic facemask can improver your speech patters, if you notice your speech has become slurred or muffled, contact Dr. Kathryn Swan at Swan Orthodontics for adjustments.
For more information on orthodontic facemasks, read our personal guide here. If you are considering braces and want to know if orthodontic facemasks are right for you, contact Swan Orthodontics today. Orthodontic facemask can be an incredible addition to your treatment and help make the experience much more comfortable. You can schedule a consultation on our webiste or call us today at our Caledonia, MI office.