Tip #1: Brush Your Teeth Daily
During orthodontic treatment you will want to make extra sure you brush your teeth thoroughly, and daily. Here at Hudec Dental Orthodontics we recommend that you brush after every meal, instead of just the normal two times a day. The reasoning for this is because since braces are foreign objects we place in your mouth to correct your smile; they catch every piece of food you place in your mouth. You will notice a lot of things get stuck, and the longer something sits on your teeth, the more likely you are to have decay.
New tip: make sure you rinse your mouth with water before brushing. This helps loosen up any food that may be sitting on your teeth or trapped in a bracket or wire. You can use any type of soft-bristled toothbrush, electric or manual, and use a circular brush motion on your teeth, pulling away from your gums. Make sure to take your time, brush at all angles (including the back of your teeth), and clean your tongue to remove bacteria and freshen your breath.
Tip # 2: Floss is Your Friend
This is a big one. You will want to make sure you floss at least once a day. This will help your gums stay healthy and release any food stuck in your teeth. Flossing with braces is exactly like flossing without. The goal is to get in between the teeth. The only difference with flossing with braces is that you will need to get around your arch wire. Here are a few ways to do that:
- (hard) Regular flossing: The arch wires will make traditional flossing more difficult, but patience and diligence will always allow you to floss like a boss!
- (medium) We recommend adding a floss threader to your regular flossing routine. It looks like a large, plastic needle with a loop on the end to help hold your floss in place. To effectively use a floss threader, you will thread the floss through the arch wire, remove the floss threader and move the floss in and around your tooth. You can then simply pull the floss out and do it again on the next tooth. The process is timely at first, but eventually you will be a professional at it.
- (easy) Another option is a water flosser. These work really great for braces, and normal mouths alike! The water flosser will shoot water where you direct it in your mouth (between your teeth and gums), and effectively remove the debris that brushing missed, just like flossing! There are many different brands you can purchase, so do your research, look for deals, or ask a Hudec Dental professional for their recommendation!
Tip # 3: Watch Over-Brushing and Avoid Whitening Products
Brushing is very important, but you will want to make sure you don’t over-brush your teeth. Over-brushing can lead to sensitivity and receding gums. This will wear down your enamel and push your gums back and can lead to other dental problems such as periodontal disease.
Also, while you want to watch your brushing you will also want to stay away from whitening products while you are in treatment. This is because we have placed brackets on all your teeth. When your treatment is complete, and the brackets are removed, any spot that wasn’t treated with a whitening agent (i.e., where your brackets were), will be discolored and you’ll have more work to do to have a glowing smile.
Thinking about braces? Don’t put it off any longer! Call us today at 216-325-0822!