Most people are aware of the importance of oral hygiene. Maintaining careful and consistent oral hygiene becomes absolutely necessary when a person has braces.
Inadequate brushing and flossing may cause white and yellow spots to develop on the teeth. This discoloration may negatively affect the overall appearance of one’s smile, which counteracts the braces’ ability to make your smile straighter and nicer.
To ensure that you have a healthy smile after your braces are removed, make sure to take care of your teeth during the process.
Here are a few ways you can maintain oral hygiene with braces:
- Brushing Frequently – When a person eats with braces, there is always a chance that food will get stuck in their braces. Therefore, a person with braces needs to brush as soon as they are done eating. Usually, this means brushing at least three times a day. Brushing frequently should be made into a habit with braces in order to avoid cavities. Use fluoride toothpaste and replace your brush often, as the bristles tend to wear down more quickly with braces.
- Interdental Brushes – These are small brushes which help to reach every nook and cranny of your teeth and other oral appliances. They help to remove large pieces of rubbish and food from your teeth. Use interdental brushes before you use a normal brush.
- Flossing – Flossing dislodges the food stuck between your teeth and helps to remove harmful plaque. It may be difficult to floss with braces.
- Mouthwash – Rinse your mouth with water or a strong mouthwash to help kill the bacteria and remove the biofilm from your tongue.
Flossing With Braces
How do you floss when the string always gets stuck in the brace wire? Here are two options that will allow you to do so easily:
- Traditional flossing with a waxed floss. Take the floss and thread it between the braces’ wire and your teeth in a U shape. Press the floss between your index finger and start moving it up and down gently so as to prevent the floss from getting caught in the wire. For the top teeth, floss in an upside down U shape. Floss up to the gum line. Slowly and gently remove the floss. Repeat the process on your bottom teeth.
- Waterpik flossing. With a waterpik, you can floss much more quickly. Fill the water reservoir with water. Take the tapered tip and insert it into the water. Press it to make sure that the water goes through the flosser. Place the flosser in your mouth and turn the water flosser on. Allow the water to gently drain from your mouth. Do not spit all of it out at once. Carefully guide the water stream back and forth across your gum line and between your teeth.
- You can even use dental tape or a floss threader, both of which are much more affordable
Keeping your oral hygiene in check while having braces is crucial so as to prevent any further problems from arising. By using these tips, you will help to ensure that your post-braces smile is as good as can be!
Make an appointment at Orthodontics by Birth, Stewart & Fletcher to check up on your braces and to ask your orthodontist for more ways to make sure that your treatment goes as smoothly as possible!