Lots of things change when you get braces: the foods you eat, how your teeth look, and your oral health routines. Brushing and flossing is still a must, but you may wonder how on earth you are supposed to slide floss between your teeth when there is a wire in the way. Here are some things you need to know about tooth care and braces.
Braces Need Brushing Too
Braces create more food traps in your mouth than before, so it is recommended you brush your teeth (and braces) after every meal. Here are some steps to take for it:
- Rinse: this will help dislodge food particles from your teeth and braces.
- Brush Your Braces: Use your toothbrush to clean the wire, bands, and brackets. Also consider trying a small interdental brush; this brush makes it easier to clean between the braces and under the wire.
- Brush Your Teeth: Make sure you clean your teeth as thoroughly as you cleaned your braces.
- Rinse: This clears out any remaining food debris loosened by your brushing.
- Check Your Teeth: Look in the mirror and smile wide. Do your teeth look clean? Are your braces shining? Can you see the edges of your brackets?
Floss Them Too
Some may decide to forgo flossing while they receive orthodontia treatment because it is harder to do and takes longer. However, the extra time you take to floss your teeth once a day is very important for gum health. Things to use when flossing with braces include:
- Floss Threader: This tool pulls the floss under the wire, which then allows you to floss your teeth like you would normally.
- Orthodontia Floss: This type of floss has a hard end that works like a threader in making it easy to get the floss under the wire.
- Waxed Floss: Using unwaxed floss can heighten the chances of the floss getting caught on your braces and fraying.