It’s no secret that braces add to the challenge of oral hygiene, but with a little effort, you can ensure your oral health is stellar during and after orthodontic treatment. Below are tips and suggestions from Roeder Orthodontics in Asheville, NC.
- Get started: Remove elastics, bands, or removable parts of your orthodontic appliance.
- Clean the braces and wires: Use a soft bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste. Angle the toothbrush so you can feel the bristles on your gum line. Carefully clean around wires and pins, brushing small circular motions around the braces. Move top to bottom when cleaning the wires, and all away around both top and bottom teeth.
- Brush your teeth: Brush all your teeth, spending at least 30 seconds per quadrant. Brush your tongue and the roof of your mouth. It is recommended to brush in the morning, after meals, and before bed.
- On the go: Take a travel toothbrush and toothpaste along with you in your bag, purse, or backpack
- Going the extra mile: Using a Interdental toothbrush (or proxabrush) helps to clean areas near brackets and under wires when you leave the house. Your toothbrush will wear out faster because of your braces and appliances; replace it whenever the bristles begin to fray.
- Floss once a day: Use waxed floss and thread it carefully under the main wire before passing between two teeth move up and down gently, remove, and move on to the next pair of teeth. Use regular floss with a floss threader to place above and below the orthodontic wire, or a special flosser made for braces and tight spaces.
- Floss threaders: A floss threader is similar to a threading needle. Insert one end of the floss through the threader and feed the threader under your archwire. Grab the floss on each end and slide it up and down the sides of both teeth and under the gums.
- Special flossers: There are several varieties and brands of flossers for braces. These are easy to use, and easy to pack for use on the go.
- Rinse and check: Rinse your mouth with water or fluoride mouthwash. Examine your teeth and braces in the mirror for any remaining food particles.
- Going the extra mile: Use an Irrigator (or water pick) to help ensure a completely clean mouth. The irrigator shoots a small stream of pressurized water at your teeth and gums and helps get rid of bits of food that become trapped in small spaces.
Planning Regular Checkups
You’ll have regular and ongoing braces checkups with Roeder Orthodontics. Dr. Jeffrey Roeder can help repair broken pieces, address specific oral hygiene challenges, and answer any questions about brushing and flossing. In addition to your regular orthodontic checkups, be sure to continue bi-yearly or quarterly visits with your regular dentist as recommended to ensure the best oral health possible.
By practicing diligence in caring for your teeth, you’ll have a strong and straight smile when you finish orthodontic treatment. For parents of children in braces, please encourage and help them with their daily orthodontic tooth care and maintenance.
Roeder Orthodontics serves children, teens and adults in Asheville, NC and surrounding communities with their braces and orthodontic appliances. Contact us today to schedule a visit or to ask questions about brushing and flossing your braces.