How to Keep your Braces Clean

If you have braces, you know how difficult it can be to maintain proper oral health while adjusting to orthodontic treatment. Normal brushing, flossing, and eating habits have to be altered significantly to accommodate the appliance and promote decay-free teeth. To keep braces clean, you should follow a disciplined routine, which will help teeth look attractive during and after treatment. 

Brushing 

Utilizing a soft-bristled tooth brush, patients should gently clean around brackets. Practice brushing small, circular motions with the brush angled to reach under gums. Brushing gently will prevent the wires from being bent and brackets from damage, removing any debris from your last meal. Extra food particles around brackets are what contribute to plaque buildup, decay, and bad breath. Brushing at least twice a day will keep the mouth smelling fresh in the morning and night, but you should brush after each meal to ensure no food is stuck in your braces. 

Flossing

Flossing is an essential part of dental care, and for those with braces, it can be the most difficult part. You have to weave the floss behind your wire each time before pushing it beneath the tooth. Be sure to reach deeply between teeth, knocking out food particles and disrupting bacterial growth. If you have gaps between teeth, using an interdental brush is much easier. This is a pine-tree shaped brush with bristles that offers the same benefits as dental floss. Additionally, water flossers are a great option to add to your tooth care routine, blasting water between teeth for a satisfying clean feeling. 

Eating

Altering your diet will save your teeth from decay and plaque buildup, while also protecting the orthodontic appliance. Sticky and chewy foods are off-limits, including gum or taffy, and limiting sugary food will help keep brackets clean. Stay away from hard foods that can break wires, loosen brackets; this includes foods like nuts, hard candy, and some fruits or vegetables. If you want, cut these hard-to-chew foods into smaller bits, making them less impactful when eating them. To help remove food after meals, rinse your mouth with water. 

Teeth Whitening with Braces

If you want to have whiter teeth with braces, teeth whitening is an option. Ask your dentist or orthodontist for options that are safe and positive for your smile. Due to the brackets, teeth will not be fully exposed to any whitening treatment, leaving dark spots on teeth when the braces come off. 

Contact Louis F. Mascola, DDS for Braces Care

For help with your braces care, or to schedule an appointment, please call our practice. We provide constant support and advice for those with braces. 
 

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