Cleaning your teeth when you have braces can seem tedious at first, but don’t let this discourage you from looking after your oral health. While braces are an excellent solution to correct misaligned teeth and enhance your smile, they can easily trap food particles and bacteria, which often leads to plaque buildup. It is crucial to clean your teeth properly while wearing braces to protect the health of your gums and teeth. Here are a few tips to help you maintain your oral hygiene with braces.
Use the Right Toothbrush After Every Meal
Braces can trap food particles that pass through them; therefore, you need to clean your teeth after every meal. If the debris stays on your teeth, it can cause plaque buildup and ultimately lead to tooth decay.
Most dental professionals recommend using a soft toothbrush to clean your gums and teeth. If you brush too roughly with a hard-bristled toothbrush, it can trigger gum recession. Similarly, firm toothbrushes brushes are not ideal for cleaning between the brackets and wires of your braces.
Don’t Forget to Floss
A good brushing routine is quite effective at removing food particles stuck in your braces, but flossing ensures that your teeth are as clean as possible. Flossing can be more tedious when you have braces, especially when you’re still learning to take care of them. However, the following tools can help make the process easier.
- Floss threader
- Soft picks
- Interdental picks
- Woven dental floss
While it’s good to floss at least once per day, it’s even better to do it after every meal that can leave debris in your braces.
Consider Fluoride Treatments
Fluoride has been an indispensable component in oral health for many years. It helps keep your teeth strong and prevents cavities. When you go to see a dentist for a regular oral hygiene appointment, they may recommend a deep fluoride treatment to strengthen and protect your teeth.
While deep fluoride treatments can help maintain your oral health when not wearing braces, they become a critical part of dental hygiene for people undergoing orthodontic treatment. Since braces can make it harder to clean your teeth, they can hinder your efforts to eliminate germs and bacteria. Fluoride treatments complement your oral hygiene routine to ensure minimal bacteria buildup.
Avoid Excess Toothpaste
Toothpaste foam can mask food particles and debris in your braces, making them harder to remove. It’s best to start your brushing routine with a wet toothbrush since it makes it easier to clean the wires and brackets.
Instead of scrubbing your wires and brackets, consider using soft picks or interdental picks to remove food particles. Once most of the debris is gone, add a small amount of toothpaste and continue brushing. Ideally, you should brush for at least two minutes to ensure each part of your mouth is clean.
When you get braces for the first time, learning how to take care of them can be daunting. However, following a good oral hygiene routine is vital for keeping your braces clean and maintaining excellent dental health. Besides brushing your teeth and flossing, ensure that you visit your dentist and orthodontist regularly to ensure your braces and oral health are in good shape.
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