Top Tips for Healthy Gums and Teeth with Braces

Oral hygiene is an important part of your daily routine to ensure you stay on top of your overall health. But, braces and other orthodontic appliances can make it difficult to care for your teeth. A little extra time and effort in caring for your teeth can make a big difference when it comes to your oral health. Here are some great tips to follow to keep your teeth healthy and clean while you are wearing orthodontic appliances.

  • Change your brushing routine. While it is suggested we all brush twice a day for two minutes at a time, brushing after every meal can be beneficial to your oral hygiene and your braces. Focus on the brackets, where food can get caught. Make a goal of brushing each tooth for ten seconds. Cover all areas or your tooth: front, back, chewing surfaces, near gum line. And use an angled position to clean around appliance parts.
  • Flossing may be difficult with braces, but it is still important. Dental tools specifically designed to help those with braces make flossing easier can be found in your local store. These plastic needles go under the arch wire and between the teeth to allow you to floss around your braces. A floss threader is a great way to be sure you are flossing properly and regularly.
  • Fluoride an important element of your oral hygiene routine to protect your teeth from tooth decay. Since cleaning teeth with braces can be more difficult, finding a toothpaste or mouthwash with fluoride while you are wearing braces can help reduce your risk of tooth decay, eliminate plaque, and reduce your risk of cavities.
  • Stay away from foods that your orthodontist tells you are bothersome to those wearing braces. These include hard foods, sticky foods, and foods that can get stuck in between your brackets. Some examples of prohibited foods are caramel, carrots, celery, corn on the cob, hard candy, nuts, popcorn, toffee, and sticky foods. Reduce the risk of breaking your wires and brackets by following diets that eliminate the prohibited foods.
  • Some healthy foods can be very acidic. This can cause damage to your teeth and gums. Stick to low acid foods such as bananas, watermelon, chicken, fish, rice, and oatmeal. Following a healthy diet while wearing braces can positively influence your overall health.
  • Be sure to follow your orthodontist’s tips for care of your braces. If you wear elastics, make sure to remove them before brushing and to carefully replace them when you have finished. If you have a problem with your braces, contact your orthodontist office immediately to schedule an appointment.

Oral hygiene can affect your overall health. Since taking care of your teeth and gums can be difficult when wearing braces, following these tips to make your routine easier can help eliminate frustration and save you time. Contact your orthodontist with any questions you have about caring for your braces.