Oral Hygiene During Braces (How to Manage)

Oral hygiene during braces is so important to the health of your teeth. If you fail to practice good oral hygiene, you will find that you begin having issues like cavities, gingivitis, and even gum disease. When wearing braces, it is still absolutely essential that you practice good hygiene. Both the orthodontic appliances and your teeth need to be kept clean. Because traditional metal braces can be difficult to clean, it’s important to take your time when cleaning your teeth. You must pay special attention to the brackets and wires so that you remove all plaque and food debris.

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Why Oral Hygiene During Braces is Important

The reason it’s important to take care of your teeth is because it helps to promote a full, bright and healthy smile. If you fail to take care of your teeth, especially during orthodontic treatment, you could develop cavities and other intra-oral problems. After the orthodontic appliances are removed, you want a full smile that is healthy and bright. The best way to accomplish this is by utilizing techniques and tips for keeping your teeth clean while you’re undergoing orthodontic treatment.


Tips for Keeping Your Braces and Teeth Clean

It is important to ask your orthodontist about different tips you can utilize to keep your teeth as clean as possible. They will be able to walk you through the process of actually cleaning the appliances and the teeth that are behind them. You should always get advice from your orthodontist when looking to improve your oral hygiene habits at home. Some of these tips include:


Use a Power Toothbrush

Power toothbrushes often use either a rotating head or sonic vibrations to knock plaque and food off of teeth and orthodontic appliances. The speed and intensity can be easily adjusted, so you can effortlessly clean your teeth without worrying that the toothbrush is being too rough. Likewise, these brushes can help to push food from in between teeth so that there is less left behind to cause a problem. Power toothbrushes can range in price from being affordable to being more pricey. So, be sure to find the one that fits into your budget the best.


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Use Special Floss

Using normal string floss when you have orthodontic wires and brackets on your teeth is difficult. So, to help make flossing easier, look for interdental brushes that can easily be used to clean in between teeth. These brushes are soft and easy to use, as they can glide between tight teeth to reduce the food and plaque found in these areas. This doesn’t replace flossing, but it can help.  There are some things to look for when choosing a flossing product:

  • Look for floss that is meant for orthodontic work
  • Use floss threaders to help guide the floss under the wires
  • Avoid flossing brushes that are sharp or too large
  • Keep these flossing brushes on hand for on-the-go cleaning


Consider Water Flossing

Water flossing has become a go-to option for a lot of patients who have orthodontic treatment. For one, the machine is easy to use even for beginners. The way that the machine works is by shooting high pressured water between the teeth to clear away plaque and food debris. You can even put mouthwash into some of these water flossers to get a deep clean that gets rid of bacteria in the process. These flossing machines are often easier to use for orthodontic patients and those who have tight teeth. They’re great for people who do not necessarily like to floss their teeth but know that it’s important to their oral health.


Use Mouthwash

Mouthwash is able to help reduce bacteria and germs in the mouth while simultaneously getting rid of plaque. After brushing your teeth and orthodontic appliances, be sure to use a high-quality mouthwash and rinse for about 30 seconds. If the alcohol in the mouthwash bothers you, switch to an alcohol-free version that is less harsh. Mouthwash is an often overlooked step, but it has some serious benefits. Not only does mouthwash help to clear away bacteria, but it can get rid of germs and plaque that were missed while brushing. You will also benefit from a wonderfully fresh breath after you rinse with mouthwash. Oral hygiene during braces will be easier this way.


Make Routine Dental Appointments

It is important that even if you have orthodontic appliances on your teeth, you keep your regular dental appointments. Professional cleanings can get rid of tartar, which is hardened plaque that is next to impossible to remove safely on your own. You should have these professional cleanings done every six months. You should make it a habit to have these appointments simply because they are so essential for keeping your mouth and teeth clean.


Maintaining Your Orthodontic Work

It is important that you make regular trips into the orthodontic office to maintain your appliances. Most orthodontic appliances need to be adjusted and changed out every 6-10 weeks. So you should make it a habit to keep up with these appointments. These visits can be easily and conveniently scheduled for you so that you never have to worry that you’re missing an appointment. For most patients, orthodontic treatment can be completed in about 18-24 months.  However, this may be shorter or longer depending on how severe your orthodontic problems were prior to being fitted for the appliances. Your orthodontist can help in keeping track of your care and offering the treatment that is needed.

Your orthodontic treatment can be crucial in improving your smile and confidence. Regardless of your age or the age of your child or teen, it is so important to take steps and visit your orthodontist to ensure that you are receiving the care that is needed. You will love your smile when you take proper care of it even during orthodontic treatment.



A FREE Consultation Awaits

With Drs. Nease and Higginbotham Orthodontics, you can finally receive the care that you need in a welcoming and warm environment. You can call the office to schedule an appointment to be seen by their helpful professionals. And begin the treatment that you need. They offer a complementary consultation for new patients about Oral Hygiene during braces and anyone interested in beginning care.

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2455 E. Main Street

Spartanburg, SC 29307

Phone: (864) 579-7700

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Oral Hygiene During Braces (How to Manage)


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