Braces can be a different experience for everyone—some kids can’t wait to go through this rite of passage, while others are embarrassed by the change to their appearance. Some people only have braces for a few months, and others will spend years wearing them in an effort to achieve the ideal smile. One thing that is universal about wearing braces, however, is the need to maintain a healthy mouth while perfecting your grin. Brushing and flossing is definitely different with brackets on your teeth, so it’s important to learn the best way to care for your mouth in its new state. Read on to learn how best to brush with braces so you can stay healthy and happy on the road to transformation!
Before You Brush
It’s easier for food particles to stick to teeth when a person is wearing braces, so swishing water or mouthwash around the mouth before beginning to brush can help loosen or dislodge any stuck material.
Work The Angles
Once you begin brushing, it’s important to hold your toothbrush at many different angles to ensure you’re hitting every part of the tooth and bracket. Start at a 45 degree angle at your gum line, and gently brush the space at the top of the teeth where they meet the gums. Once this section has been cleaned, angle the brush 45 degrees downward and brush the top of the tooth and the top of each bracket. Finally, move below the bracket, angling the toothbrush up to hit the bottom section of the brackets as well as the lower portion of the tooth. It’s important to move slowly and ensure that every portion of each tooth and bracket is being brushed. This practice may take time to learn and be comfortable with, but eventually you will become more at ease brushing your new mouth.
Brush After Meals
Because it is so much easier for food to stick to teeth with braces, it’s important that wearers brush their teeth after every meal as regularly as possible. Twice a day is usually suitable for people without braces, but those undergoing orthodontic treatment will need to increase their frequency of brushing. This may mean bringing a toothbrush to school or work and visiting the bathroom there to clean your teeth. A child can keep a toothbrush in their lunchbox or locker for easier access, and some people find keeping a spare toothbrush in their desk at work is more convenient than bringing one everyday.
Keeping teeth clean while they are being transformed with braces is a vitally important step along the road to a healthier mouth. Brushing and flossing should be maintained regularly throughout the months or years spent in braces so that it isn’t just a beautiful smile that’s unveiled eventually, but a wholly healthy mouth. Your dentist or orthodontist can be a great asset in helping you or your child learn how to continue taking good care of your teeth while wearing braces, and it’s important to remember that asking questions is the best way to learn!
If you have questions about your oral health routine while in braces, or to schedule a routine appointment, give us a call at Advanced Family Dental & Orthodontics today! Our Shorewood, Frankfort and Lockport dentists are always ready to guide you towards optimal oral health.