Brushing and Braces

When it comes to wearing brace, there are several health and social changes tied to it. From making it easier to maintain proper dental hygiene, to boosting one’s confidence, you can be sure that the pros of wearing far outweigh the ‘cons’, which includes the cost and potential stigmas. Speaking of dental hygiene/oral care, sticking to a sound oral care regime is more important than ever while you are wearing brace. You see, braces can create some unique concerns and challenges. Yes, one of the things you must do is choosing the right foods. But you shouldn’t go easy on how you brush your teeth either.

If your child is also wearing braces (be it for six months or up to two years), you need to ensure that they learn how to brush their teeth properly. Plaque and food particles tend to adhere to the teeth and brackets, and that makes brushing difficult with braces. In addition, there is no fixed number to how many times you need to brush each day. Ask your orthodontist to be sure, but one thing is certain that you should brush after every meal.

How to brush teeth while wearing braces

For starters, always rinse with water before you brush. By doing so, you can loosen food particles that have lodged themselves in and around the braces. When you are ready to start brushing, you need to ensure you are using an ADA-approved fluoride toothpaste. Next, begin the process by brushing at a 45-degree angle, at the gum line. Once the gum line has been brushed, your focus should be on top of each bracket, followed by the bottom and then the wire. When you reach the wire, try to angle the toothbrush up.

Go gently and slowly as you brush, and make sure you cover important areas such as every tooth at the gum line. If you adhere to this method, you will have better chances of removing plaque and food debris.

Remember to floss and rinse while wearing braces

Flossing is a must-do if you want to keep your teeth healthy. If you need to floss, consider using a floss threader, as it makes things much easier. In addition, soft picks help brush hard-to-reach spaces effectively. After brushing and flossing, you should always remember to rinse with a fluoride mouth rinse to prevent cavities.

Never skimp on fluoride usage or intake

Did you know that wearing braces can accelerate the causes of tooth decay? Yes, that is true and that’s why you should make fluoride your best defense. If possible, do drink as much fluoridated tap water as possible, in conjunction to using ADA-approved fluoride toothpaste. In most cases, your orthodontist may recommend a mouthwash that’s rich in fluoride.

A summary of the extra steps you need to take

Need a quick recap on how to brush properly when you are wearing braces? We got you covered. The extra steps you need to add to your usual oral care routine include:

  • Brace-related elastics must be removed before brushing
  • Brush in a gentle motion
  • Try to get the bristles into any small gaps
  • Inspect your braces after brushing to spot if anything else is still stuck in them
  • Switch to an electric toothbrush for greater convenience (optional)
  • Always remember to floss (with or without braces)

As always, speak to your orthodontist to address any questions or concerns you have about brushing your teeth with braces.