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Can You Get Braces If You Have Cavities? Well, It Depends on Your Dental Health and Hygiene

“Smile, it’s free therapy.”

A smiling face is a beautiful face. If you have all-straight teeth, your smile becomes more beautiful. Now, what can present you with perfectly straight teeth? A set of braces.

Whether you want better dental health or a beautiful smile, braces are your ‘silver knight’.

Now the question is can you get braces if you have cavities? The simple answer is ‘No’. Even if the question is can you get braces with small cavities, the answer will remain the same, no!

Orthodontists usually prefer to place braces on patients that have healthy teeth and gums. This means no cavities or decay. If you have cavities, you should fill them before your orthodontics treatment as braces can cause more decaying.

can you get braces if you have cavities

Table of Content

What is Tooth Cavity?

Can you get braces if you need fillings will be a whole new issue? And that I am going to discuss later sometimes in another article. But, it’s vital to know about the cavities first. What happens if you get braces with cavities? Can you get braces with cavities?

A cavity is a hole in a tooth that develops from tooth decay. Cavities and tooth decay are common health problems that can affect people of any age, including babies.

Cavities, aka, tooth decay or caries, are caused by a combination of factors: bacteria in your mouth, food particles, acids, and saliva. They combine to form a sticky substance, plaque, that later hardens into tartar and calculus.

Germs in the plaque produce acids that decay the tooth and forms a hole in your tooth. Result: you have tooth cavities.

Can You Get Braces If You Have Cavities?

No. You can not get braces if you have cavities in your teeth.

Cavities and gum disease are active diseases that usually start small and gradually get greater if not treated in time. They also weaken the overall tooth structure.

If you have braces on weak teeth, it will create more dental problems like cracks or fractures that may lead to tooth loss.

can you get braces if you have cavities

Additionally, your teeth are more at risk of cavities while wearing braces. The brackets and wires that build braces create a climate where food particles can be easily trapped in your mouth and make it difficult to keep your teeth clean.

Therefore, during this orthodontic treatment, if you do not maintain oral hygiene, not only cavities can develop but also your existing cavities get worse.

So, most orthodontists would suggest you treat your cavities first before embracing your teeth with braces.

Treatment of Cavities Before Braces

It is important to see your general dentist before you seek an orthodontist for braces.

Usually, general dentists and orthodontists work as a team to maintain oral health. Before bracing, they check the condition of your gums and check for cavities to make sure your teeth are strong and healthy.

The symptoms of a tooth cavity depend on the extremity of the decay. Then how to tell if you have a cavity with braces. The symptoms usually are the same before or after braces.

  • Sensitive teeth
  • Pain in your teeth
  • Hole in your teeth 
  • Black or white staining on teeth

If cavities are identified, dentists suggest the following treatment to prevent further damage due to bad tooth cavities. It’s essential to complete these treatments. Otherwise, the query ‘can you get braces if you have cavities’ will haunt you down.

Tooth fillings

In this treatment, a dentist uses a drill to remove the decayed material from a tooth. Then he fills the tooth with a substance: silver, gold, or composite resin.


For more severe decay, dentists suggest crown or ‘cap’ – a hollow, artificial tooth that is placed over a decayed tooth to replace its natural crown. The decayed tooth material is removed before this procedure.

Root canal

Your dentist will suggest a root canal if cavities cause the death of your nerves. He will remove the nerve tissue, blood vessel tissues, and any decayed areas of your tooth. He checks for infections then applying the medication as needed. Finally, he fills the tooth and may place a crown on it.

can you get braces if you have cavities

Can you get braces if you have cavities? No. However, when your cavities are treated and your teeth are sufficiently strong, you can start your orthodontic treatment. Are you thinking about how long after cavity filling can I get braces? Well, your orthodontist will be the best person to tell.

What Are The Best Types Of Braces If You Have Fillings?

Traditional metal braces are the strongest choice for strong teeth if you have fillings. They are usually glued to the teeth and held in place with small rubber bands or wires.

Ceramic braces are not long-lasting and less effective than metal braces. They are usually chosen because the color matches your natural teeth.

Invisalign, the virtually invisible, modern orthodontic treatment that gently moves your teeth into place. If you have a cavity-prone mouth and do not like braces, but still want straight teeth, Invisalign gives you the best of both worlds.

The best part of these clear plastic aligners is you can slip on or off them whenever you want. However, you need to be committed to yourself wearing the aligners for 22+ hours per day for the duration of your treatment. Usually, the improvements are noticeable after several months.

No matter how great the braces are the question can you get braces if you have cavities is still there. So, let’s take a look at the consequences of having cavities while on the brace.

If You Get A Cavity While In Braces

Though it is unlikely to develop cavities with braces since you are under regular dental care, you can get cavities if you do not maintain proper oral hygiene or miss out on several check-ups.

Now the question is how to get rid of a cavity with braces?

If you get cavities while in braces, dentists usually work around the brackets to administer the filling. In a few cases, to remove the cavity, the brackets around the decayed area might be removed temporarily. After treating the cavities, braces are reapplied.

Remember: if you do not maintain oral hygiene, cavities can develop while wearing braces, and it will take longer to have straight teeth. So, next time before you search for ‘can you get braces if you have cavities’ it’s better to modify your oral hygiene routine.

How to Maintain Oral Hygiene with Braces to Avoid Cavities

Oral hygiene is crucial at every stage of life. It should be even more important when you have braces.

You need to use a different technique and that for a little longer to brush and floss with braces. However, the extra time and effort are worthwhile to protect your teeth from decay, disease, and cavities.

Brush Your Teeth

Brushing is important with or without braces. However, when you wear braces, food particles and plaque easily get stuck under your braces that cause cavities. So, it is important to brush thoroughly.

Hold a soft-headed toothbrush at a slight angle and carefully brush over the surface of each tooth and between the braces to reach hard-to-reach areas. Move your toothbrush in small circular motions to remove any food particles under your gum line.

Brush your teeth at least four times a day: in the morning, after lunch, after dinner, and before going to bed.

Replace your toothbrush more often as the bristles of your toothbrush will wear down sooner for braces.

Flossing Is Fructuous

Flossing is crucial when you wear braces. It removes the plaque and food particles that your toothbrush can’t clean.

Floss your teeth at least once a day. Take about 20cm of floss, wrap it around your index fingers and gently floss between the wire and teeth. Your gums may bleed when you first start flossing – it’s normal. However, if the bleeding doesn’t stop after several flossings, consult your dentist.


After flossing, rinsing your mouth with a mouthwash containing fluoride improves your oral hygiene. It helps to strengthen the enamel on your teeth and prevent tooth decay and cavities. And when you won’t have any cavities the question can you get braces if you have cavities will become obsolete.

Avoid Certain Foods

You should avoid certain foods with braces, such as sticky and hard foods, that can break wires and loosen the brackets.

Avoid sugary foods and soft drinks because they can cause staining and cavities. After eating or drinking anything, brush thoroughly to avoid unwanted dental damages.

Routine Dental Checkup

You should visit your dentist regularly, with or without braces, to maintain healthy teeth and gums. However, with braces, it is more crucial. See your dentist every six months to have your teeth professionally cleaned.to avoid further dental damage or decay.

Bottom Line

“Use your smile to change the world; don’t let the world change your smile.”

A set of braces work magically – either to improve your dental health or for a beautiful smile.

However, can you get braces if you have cavities? No.

If you have cavities or decaying teeth, you better treat them first before braces. With healthy and strong teeth, your braces will be more effective, and you’ll have a perfect smile when the braces come off.


  1. How long after cavity filling can you get braces?

Usually, you do not have to wait to get braces put on after your teeth are restored. However, it is advised to start your orthodontic treatment a few days apart just to be sure there are no post restorative complications.

However, few orthodontists may not refer you for ortho until you were cavities-free for at least 6 months maintaining good oral hygiene. Braces are plaque traps so if you cannot maintain good oral hygiene there are chances of increasing your decay and gingivitis risk wearing braces

2. Can you get braces if you have missing teeth?

Can you get braces if you have cavities? It’s a no. However, you can get braces if you have missing teeth.

Braces are a great option for people missing a tooth as they can close or widen gaps to get the perfect measurement of space for a dental implant.

3. Can you get rid of a cavity without filling it?

The answer is no. Dental fillings are the best way to treat cavities where a dentist removes the decayed part and fills it to stop any further damage from occurring.

Though there aren’t ways to remove a cavity without using a filling, there are ways almost to reverse the decay if identified at the early stage. Dental Sealants and Fluoride Treatment can often put the cavity at a halt as well as reverse current decaying.

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