Braces and Dental Hygiene
When you choose to undergo orthodontic treatment with braces, you also need to follow specific rules with respect to dental hygiene. After all, the addition of braces can make it harder to brush and floss. You also have to be careful about loosening a wire when eating or damaging a tooth. This can easily happen when enjoying a chewy food or a jaw-breaking sweet. Therefore, we recommend you stay away from harmful enamel-unfriendly foods and adhere to a daily regimen of teeth cleaning and flossing. Our practice, Rendon Orthodontics, offers further tips below.
How Should I Brush My Teeth When I Wear Braces?
One of the best ways to clean your teeth while wearing braces is to use an electric toothbrush that is endorsed by the ADA. Choose a soft, round oscillating head that is designed for orthodontic use. This type of brush can remove plaque and stains around the braces and at the gumline. You will need to spend a longer time cleaning your teeth when you have braces too. In fact, you may have to spend about six minutes per session.
It’s important to be conscientious about dental hygiene when you have braces, as neglecting at-home dental care can increase your risk of gingivitis. Also, by brushing and flossing regularly, your teeth will look better once you have your braces removed. When using your toothbrush, switch it on at a lower speed for added comfort along the gumline. This will also protect your wires and brackets from damage.
What Specific Steps Should I Follow When Brushing?
Basically, when brushing, you need to remove any removable parts first, such as bands or elastics. Carefully clean around the wires and pins. Brush each wire by moving from top to bottom and around the upper and lower teeth. You should spend 30 seconds on each quadrant of the mouth, tooth by tooth. Afterward, you should rinse and examine your teeth and braces to make sure you have completely cleaned your teeth.
How Should I Floss When I Wear Braces?
This is the challenging part of your at-home dental care routine. While flossing can be tricky, you can ultimately master it. Always use a piece of waxed floss, as an unwaxed floss stands a greater chance of getting caught and shredded in your braces. Gently thread the floss under the main wire before passing it between your teeth. Floss up and down before moving to the next two teeth. Try using a regular waxed floss with a floss threader or self-threading dental floss. Make sure you have enough floss - around 18 inches.
What Other Tools Can I Use?
You may also think about using a water flosser to get rid of plaque and food particles around the brackets and wires, and at the gumline. Use the appliance after you floss your teeth.
Needless to say, it is important to regularly clean your braces and teeth during orthodontic treatment. By following the steps toward better oral hygiene, you will be rewarded with a straighter, healthier, and more sparkling smile. Have you been thinking about getting braces for your teeth? If so, give Rendon Orthodontics a call at 469-956-5022 for all the details and to schedule an appointment today.