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How to Brush and Floss with Braces

Braces Floss

Lack of good dental hygiene while wearing braces can end in teeth with yellow or white spots. Permanent damage to the patient’s teeth, cavities, and even gum disease. In extreme cases, a lack of proper brushing can even make it necessary to remove the braces before the treatment time is over so that the orthodontist can treat a badly damaged tooth.

It’s not enough for you to just brush your teeth. You have to brush your teeth appropriately. If you are too harsh about it, you can end up damaging your gums and teeth, and on the other side, if you are too lazy about it, then plaque will build up on the crevices that you leave unbrushed. Thus, leading to the consequences explained before.

How to Brush Your Teeth With Braces?

The first step in brushing your teeth properly with or without braces is consistency. Your great brushing technique won’t work unless you brush your teeth consistently throughout your treatment. Your orthodontist will recommend you brush your teeth every day at least 2 times a day, preferably after every meal.

As for how to brush your teeth with braces it is not as hard as you may think; just take your time to make sure you clean every tooth properly, and by the end of your treatment, you will have perfectly aligned and clean teeth.

Firstly, remove any rubber band or elastic you may have. Then, use a soft-bristled toothbrush to remove plaque around your brackets and wire. Do this at a 45° angle with your gums; brushing at an angle allows you to get to more difficult places. Don’t forget to pay special attention to the space between your teeth and gums and teeth that have brackets with hooks on them, as it’s especially easy for food to get stuck there. After that, take a couple of minutes to brush the top and backside of your teeth.

As for what type of toothpaste you should be using, there is no need to worry. Any toothpaste will get the work done; just make sure that it contains fluoride, as it works great at preventing tooth decay.

How to Floss With Braces?

Although Healthline magazine recommends brushing only once a day, they also state that it’s important not to miss that flossing session as it’s very helpful in preventing gum disease and tooth decay. For now, we will show you techniques to floss without the use of tools.

Whenever you are going to floss, try to do it in front of a mirror so that you can see your movements rather than just go by feel. Cut around 18 inches of floss and thread it between your wire and the space between your teeth. Hold your floss by wrapping it around your fingers and gently slide the floss front and back as you make your way around the crevice. When you are done cleaning, carefully remove the floss, so you won’t accidentally get caught on something, and move on to your next spot.

If you find it difficult to floss the old fashion way with your braces on the way, there is no need to worry as there are many tools designed to help in situations like these.

What Other Tools Are There?

Patients have a variety of reasons as to why it’s difficult for them to floss without a little bit of help from some tools. Older patients may just lack the dexterity to make the floss reach small crevices. On the other hand, patients going through orthodontic treatments have the added difficulty of appliances being in the way. Whichever the case may be, here are a few gadgets to help you floss properly every time.

Floss threaders are little plastic wires with a loop at one end that allows you to pull your floss through little crevices where your floss alone has trouble getting at. It’s great for those tiny spaces that are created between your teeth, brackets, and wires.

A Waterpik, or water flosser, uses a stream of water to remove bacteria from the teeth, gums, and crevices where you would usually use floss. Its use is very easy and straightforward. Just fill its tank with water and point it at the most difficult places to get to. For patients with braces, this tends to be under the metal wire, the sides of the brackets, and the little space created between teeth, gums, and metal wires.

If you need any extra information regarding the proper care of braces, you can contact us here. If you wish to make an appointment for a checkup, cleaning, or any other dental procedure, we will be more than happy to book your appointment here.

Dr. Estes and her team are committed to ensuring each patient and their families receive excellent care using state-of-the-art treatment options.