Taking Care of Your Braces
You should be prepared for the fact that taking care of your teeth will be more difficult once you get braces. Braces have countless tiny spaces to trap food, and this trapped food causes plaque, which can lead to many other dental problems. Because of this, it’s very important to brush your teeth after every meal (snacks count, too), to rinse with mouthwash, and to floss at least once a day. This may seem tedious or excessive, but neglecting your oral hygiene can lead to serious oral health problems, force you to spend additional time in braces, or cause unsightly staining on your teeth. The extra responsibility needed to care for braces properly is something that you should be prepared for.
The Basics: Brushing And Flossing
Careful cleaning is required with braces, because plaque bacteria are easily trapped inside and around them. The following procedure will make daily brushing and flossing both simple and effective.
- Prepare to brush. Take off elastics and any other removable parts of your orthodontic appliance.
- Clean your braces. Hold your brush at a 45-degree angle to clean around the wires and pins of your braces. Brush from the top of each wire down to the bottom. Take your time to ensure that all plaque and debris are removed, and that you work all the way around upper and lower teeth.
- Brush your teeth. Clean each tooth individually. First, place your brush at a 45-degree angle the gum line, then apply gentle pressure as you move in a circular motion. Do this for about 10 seconds. Use the same brushing action on all outer and inner tooth surfaces, tilting the brush as needed to better reach the insides of smaller front teeth.
- Floss once a day. Dr. Yelizar will show you the best way to floss, or follow the instructions on the product package. You may also want to use a flossing product designed for braces and orthodontic work, like a floss threader.
- Rinse and check your teeth. Rinse thoroughly with water or mouth rinse, and examine your teeth and braces in the mirror.
Visit SimpliBraces Regularly
During the time that you have braces on your teeth, you will need to visit the Dr. Yelizar at SimpliBraces regularly for adjustments to your appliance. After a routine orthodontic adjustment, you may experience some tightness or even a slight amount of pain. If this discomfort or pain does not quickly dissipate, or becomes extreme, you should consult Dr. Yelizar. Concerns about your appliances, and any problems with broken parts, should also be brought to Dr. Yelizar’s attention immediately.
It’s also important that you continue with regular visits to your general dentist while undergoing orthodontic treatment. Routine checkups are necessary to spot cavities and signs of gum disease. Your dentist or hygienist may also perform frequent fluoride treatments to provide additional protection to tooth surfaces from decay while you’re wearing braces.