Continuing good habits started in childhood is the best way for teens to keep their teeth and gums healthy. Whether wearing braces or orthodontic appliances, a teen needs to:

  • Brush twice and floss once per day
  • Reduce sugar Intake. Tooth decay is caused by bacteria that feed on sugar. This forms acid that harms your teeth
  • Limit snacking
  • Eat a healthy, balanced diet
  • Wear a mouthguard to protect your teeth when you are playing sports

Some issues you should be aware of that will affect your oral health:


Eating Disorders
  • Vomiting associated with eating disorders causes tooth decay, gum disease and loss of tooth enamel
  • Your dentist can treat your teeth, but if you have -- or think you have -- an eating disorder, talk to your physician
Grills and Tooth Jewels
  • Grills are comprised of metalwork that fits over teeth, usually removable
  • Tooth jewels are glass crystals or gold, and are secured to teeth using dental composite. They remain attached for up to a year or longer.
  • Can result in inflammation of the gums
  • Talk to your dentist first about the safest choices and proper care and cleaning

Oral Piercing

  • Can produce infections, uncontrollable bleeding and nerve damage
  • Metal jewelry can chip or crack teeth and damage your gums
  • Talk to your dentist first about the safest choices and proper care and cleaning 

Eight out of 10 teens who try smoking get hooked. Smoking can:
  • Stain your teeth and gums
  • Contribute to bad breath
  • Increase your risk of developing oral cancer and gum disease

If you notice inflammation or changes in your mouth, talk to your dentist.

Wisdom Teeth
  • Usually appear between the ages of 17 and 21, although they can begin causing problems as early as age 13
  • Your dentist can tell whether your wisdom teeth have enough space or if they should be removed