The great thing about braces is that they can bring you a smile with perfectly aligned teeth.
But while those braces are straightening your teeth, they also create additional issues in your oral hygiene routine.
Braces add a multitude of tiny spaces to your mouth and teeth, and each of these small spaces can trap food and bacteria.
When food and bacteria build up, plaque and tartar follow, and eventually cavities and gum disease.
Because of this, it’s essential that braces-wearers brush their teeth after every meal and snack, rinse with mouthwash, and floss often.
This may seem a bit excessive, but ignoring oral hygiene while undergoing orthodontic treatment can ruin the very same smile the braces are in place to fix.
With that in mind, Prevent Dental Suite has some suggestions on how you can keep your teeth clean while wearing braces, so they can shine when the braces come off!
Get the extra equipment braces called for
Because braces add so many nooks and crannies to the area around your teeth, they are the perfect place for food bits and bacteria to combine to make plaque, then tartar.
Eventually, this process can lead to stains, cavities, and gum disease.
To fight that, here are some oral hygiene accessories you should consider:
Toothbrush – A regular toothbrush, though a soft one, is a fine choice here, although there are more technological options.
You will need to replace your toothbrush more often than the standard 3-4 months if you have braces, as the brackets, wire, and bands can poke at and wear toothbrushes out.
Floss and floss threader – use floss threaders and floss just like a needle and thread to get the floss between your teeth.
Water flosser – One way to eliminate food, bacteria, and plaque around braces is to use a water flosser.
Look for a water flosser with an orthodontic tip, which is specially designed to work with braces.
Water flossers are clinically proven more effective than dental floss alone for people with braces.
Interdental Brush – This is a cone-shaped brush that can reach under wires and behind brackets to remove food, bacteria, and plaque, even before you brush and floss.
Mirror – some have an attached light, but there are less technological versions that you can leave in a wallet, purse, or bag.
These mirrors can help you see spots in your teeth, braces, and mouth that you otherwise would not see.
Recommended brushing technique
Not sure if you’re brushing the right way for your teeth and braces? Just follow our step-by-step guide.
- Before brushing, rinse with water to sluice out any food stuck in the mouth.
- Brush your gumline at a 45-degree angle.
- Position the toothbrush at the top of the brackets, angling downwards to brush on top of each bracket.
- Finally, move the toothbrush to brush the bottom of the bracket and the wire, angling the toothbrush up.
- Reach every tooth at the gumline as well as above and below the brackets.
Flossing with braces becomes a bit more complicated due to the wires, cables, and edges; it is, however, crucial for the upkeep of optimal oral hygiene and oral health while your braces are on.
We recommend flossing with braces at least once a day, and strongly recommend flossing after each meal.
- To floss with braces, you must thread the floss beneath the archwire; many patients find a floss threader can make this process much more manageable.
- Push the floss top to bottom on your upper teeth.
- For the bottom teeth, you should thread from bottom to top.
- Once the floss is threaded, floss like you typically would without braces.
Brushing and flossing instructions like this may seem a bit complicated. If you have any questions about your technique, you can contact us here at Prevent Dental Suite for answers.
There are also many videos online (sites like Youtube) that demonstrate a specific technique.
Use mouthwash regularly, as soon as your braces are in place. The metal brackets and wires create areas more likely to collect food particles and plaque.
This can lead to bad breath, plaque, tartar, and other dental problems. Using mouthwash after brushing and flossing helps kill any bacteria that might be lurking in your mouth.
Look for a mouthwash containing fluoride and follow the instructions on the bottle.
High-quality Dental Care at Prevent Dental Suite
Prevent Dental Suite has a staff of dedicated dental professionals providing patient-oriented, effective, and gentle care to our patients.
We offer high-quality dental service from the moment patients enter our office.
Dr Shilpa Gupta is the resident dentist at our Kallangur clinic, and he brings us, and our patients, many years’ of experience with personable service.
To learn more about our fantastic team, go to our team page.
Parking is easy and free. Parking is located at the rear of the building – access via Storey Road.
We are located at 9/1376 Anzac Ave in Kallangur.