Dental Tips: How can I keep my teeth clean when wearing braces?
Braces are one of the most effective ways to straighten your teeth and improve your smile, but they also make it more challenging.
It is important to make sure you oral hygiene habits are perfect to be sure that your new smile will be perfect when your braces come off.
The wires, brackets, and bands can trap food particles in the nooks and crannies between the braces and teeth and in the braces themselves.
This means that without excellent oral hygiene, there is more bacteria and plaque to attack your smile before it can even be revealed.
To make things easier, Passion Family Dental North Lakes has put together helpful tips to keep your braces and teeth clean, so you can have a straight smile that shines!
Braces are more than just cosmetic
Braces do straighten teeth, but this is not merely for appearance.
An abnormal bite (also called a”malocclusion”) may lead to other problems including impaired plaque removal, which can cause gum inflammation and cavities as over crowded or misaligned teeth can be very difficult to keep clean.
The harmful effect poor oral hygiene can have
Braces will make your teeth and smile straighter and healthier.
And while your braces themselves wont damage your teeth, poor oral hygiene while wearing braces can, which is why we stress the importance of brushing and flossing when you have braces.
You don’t want your braces to come off only to reveal stained teeth, or teeth that have cavities.
Brushing, flossing and visiting Passion Family Dental North Lakes for a cleaning every six months will prevent problems associated with poor oral hygiene.
Remember, some oral hygiene problems can become more serious when people don’t brush and floss properly.
So, the following are some suggestions for keeping your teeth in tip-top condition during your braces treatment.
Proper brushing technique
Not sure if you’re brushing the right way for your teeth and braces? Just follow our step-by-step guide.
- Before you brush, rinse your mouth with water to loosen any food stuck in the mouth.
- Brush your gumline at a 45-degree angle.
- Next, 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
How to use traditional floss with braces
- Cut a 30- to 40-centimetre piece of floss.
- Thread the floss between the primary wire and your teeth. Do this in front of a mirror if it helps you.
- Wrap the floss around your index fingers.
- Gently press the floss between the two teeth, and slide it up and down along the sides of both teeth in a U shape around each tooth.
- Remove the floss and gently pull it from behind the wire. Do not pop the floss out as this could hit the wire and pop it from the bracket.
- Move to the next two teeth and repeat.
Using an interdental toothbrush
Even with excellent brushing and flossing, cleaning the area of your teeth around your brackets or the archwire can still be tricky.
To reach those hard to reach places, you can use an interdental toothbrush, which has tiny bristles attached to a small wire, explicitly designed for going where your toothbrush and floss can’t (they look like a very small bottle brush).
Follow these steps on how to use an interdental toothbrush:
- Push the bristle tip into the hard-to-reach gaps between brackets and archwire and begin a gentle back and forth motion.
- Use warm water to rinse the bristles after cleaning around each tooth.
- Repeat the process for each bracket.
- Be careful not to aim the little wire into your gum as it may cause damage to your soft tissues.
Cleaning with a water flosser
Water flossers may still be relatively new to the tooth-cleaning scene, but they have quickly become a great tool for anyone who wants to have cleaner teeth and a sparkling smile, not to mention that they are extremely effective for keeping your braces spotless and rinsing food out from between them.
Many water flossers come with a special orthodontic tip attachment that has tiny bristles for cleaning around brackets and wires while using a powerful stream of water to blast away plaque.
Regular dental visits
It is always important to go your dentist every six months for an examination and professional clean, it becomes even more important when you have braces.
Your dentist can keep a close eye on your cleaning habits and can pick up early if you have any potential problems brewing.
Your dentist can also explain these techniques to you and make sure you are doing everything possible to ensure a beautiful smile after your braces are removed.
The Passion Family Dental North Lakes Promise!
At Passion Family Dental North Lakes, we believe high-quality dental care can only be achieved by placing our customers first.
Free parking, explicitly allocated for our patients, is available on site, as well as on-street parking. We are wheelchair friendly!
We are open from Monday to Friday, 8:00 am to 5:00 pm.
Contact us today!
We are your patient-friendly dentist located at Unit 4/6 Endeavour Boulevard in North Lakes.