How to take care of braces
You care about your teeth, so why wouldn’t you care about your braces?
You’re probably here because you or your child has begun braces treatment. Taking care and learning the correct cleaning methods for braces is very important.
Cleaning is harder, and especially important while undergoing orthodontic treatment. Braces make it easier for food to become trapped in tiny spaces which causes plaque and bacteria to grow, increasing the chances of further dental problems. Cleaning helps prevent damage to the braces and teeth.
Braces are used to correct your teeth, so taking care and cleaning increases the chances of a comfortable, shorter, and successful treatment!
Another reason to ensure successful treatment is because of the financial contribution you have made, you wouldn’t want that to go to waste, would you?
Which is why we would like you to know how to maintain clean and shiny teeth!
Three simple ways to take care of your braces:
- Brush teeth after every meal/snack
- Use mouthwash
- Floss daily
In-depth guide to brushing and flossing with braces:
Begin by preparing to brush, remove any elastic bands or other necessary parts before brushing.
Start brushing the gum line in a circular motion on a 45-degree angle. Spend about 10 seconds on each individual tooth. Do this for the outer and inner areas of each tooth and make sure to reach all the small places. Make sure to also brush the bite surface of the teeth.
Follow up by brushing each individual bracket in a circular motion for about 10 seconds each. Clean the archwires and make sure all sides of the brackets are clean.
Finish up by thoroughly rinsing your mouth out and checking your teeth and braces in the mirror to make sure they are clean, shiny and free of plaque.
Dental floss / Interdental brushes:
Flossing is an important oral hygiene practice to remove excess plaque from where the toothbrush cannot reach. It is recommended to floss once a day, preferably in the evening before bed to keep your gums and teeth healthy.
Braces make flossing difficult, which is why we recommend a floss threader which is designed for easier flossing with braces.
Interdental brushes are a preferred option to dental floss for some people, as these brushes are small and generally slide easily between the teeth and braces. The bristles work by springing out sideways to remove plaque in the small hard to reach areas, especially between the archwire and brackets.
It’s always a good idea to follow up with a mouthwash as part of your daily oral care routine, as this helps kill bacteria, reduces oral discomfort and helps keep a fresh breath.
Regular orthodontic and dental visits:
During treatment, it’s recommended to visit the orthodontist regularly for adjustments or if you experience pain that does not resolve quickly.
Regular visits to the dentist are also recommended during treatment to spot cavities, signs of gum disease or other oral health issues. The dentist will clean your teeth and may use regular fluoride treatments to provide your teeth with additional protection while your orthodontic treatment is ongoing.
Your orthodontist or dentist will also provide at-home oral care techniques if changes are necessary.
Avoid certain foods:
Some foods are off-limits during braces treatment, such as hard, sticky, crunchy, chewy or sugary foods. But this should already be clear to you if yourself or your child are currently undergoing your treatment.
At South East Orthodontics, our team of professionals are here to make your experience with braces easier and successful. Our team will answer any of your concerns and will gladly take time to walk you through how to properly clean your teeth and braces to maintain good oral health.
For more information about orthodontic treatments, or to book an appointment, please click here.