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Brace Yourself: To whiten or wait?
by Staff
So wearing a few thousand dollars worth of orthodontics doesn't make you feel like you have a million dollar smile? Shocker. But maybe whitening your teeth will help build up your confidence until those braces come off? Think again. Unfortunately, that's only going to make things worse. Brush up on whitening while straightening tips and see how well your answers, ahem, align with the truth.

With advances in orthodontics, braces rarely need to be worn for more than a year.

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Ligatures and rubber bands are the same thing when it comes to braces.

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Invisible braces are always removable.

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Adults don’t need to wear braces as long as adolescents because older mouths and jaws are fully grown and settled.

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Makers of tooth-whitening products don't usually market their products to people with braces.

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Using light beams or laser whitening is one sure way to get whitening agents to penetrate the adhesives used for braces.

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Whitening teeth the same day braces come off does not work.

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Whitening strips don’t fit well over orthodontic appliances, so it is a good idea to leave them on teeth longer while wearing braces.

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Whitening toothpastes aren’t strong enough to make a big difference in the shade of teeth, so using ultra-whitening pastes with braces is fine.

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Ceramic braces can be very close in color to natural teeth and they often stay that way.

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A new whitening product, "Erase Brace Face," is marketed for whitening teeth after braces come off.

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Removable orthodontic trays and appliances can be filled with pastes and gels and used for whitening.

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According the American Dental Association (ADA), whitening products are mostly safe.

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Brushing vigorously with baking soda each day is a safe, effective way to keep teeth and braces from yellowing.

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Using hydrogen peroxide for oral care while wearing braces can be a very good idea.

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Eating strawberries is one of the worst things you can do when it comes to keeping teeth white while wearing braces.

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For thousands of years, people have used tree barks and twigs for oral health and teeth whitening, and these natural chew sticks are a great natural alternative to whiteners while wearing orthodontic appliances.

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Over-the-counter whiteners are not OK while wearing braces, but in-office whiteners applied by professionals in whitening centers or kiosks are fine.

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It is fine to have a dentist whiten the exposed surfaces of your teeth with professional-strength products.

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Tooth color may be in the eye of the beholder.

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