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Everything You Need to Know About Brushing and Flossing with Braces

December 2, 2023

Filed under: Uncategorized — sbworcester @ 7:16 pm
a patient with braces brushing their teeth

If you’ve just started your orthodontic journey, you’re probably looking ahead to the light at the end of the tunnel—that dazzling, future smile you’re working towards should be all the motivation you need to do things correctly and ensure that your braces do their job as intended! This includes oral hygiene; patients with braces must continue to brush and floss diligently. However, this isn’t always easy, given the real estate that the brackets and wires take up inside your mouth! Continue reading below for a few useful tips that are certain to help you brush and floss correctly during your time with braces.

Tips for Brushing with Braces

At first, brushing with braces might seem like a big challenge, but with a little practice, you’ll get the hang of it in no time. There really aren’t many differences, but the presence of the brackets and wires might make things seem difficult. Consider these tips to help you out:

  • Before brushing, you should remove any elastic bands that you wear with your braces or other removable orthodontic appliances.
  • Don’t just clean your teeth—also clean your braces! Brush each bracket, wire, and pin, moving top to bottom and all the way around your upper and lower teeth. Spend two minutes doing this; each quadrant of your mouth should receive about 30 seconds of brushing time.
  • There are toothbrushes designed specifically for patients with braces; electric toothbrushes also tend to be useful.
  • After brushing, rinse your mouth thoroughly and inspect it closely to ensure you’ve gotten everything!

Tips for Flossing with Braces

The bottom line is that flossing is just as important as brushing—your toothbrush cannot clean your whole mouth on its own, and flossing is the only way to cover what your brush can’t reach. This becomes even more apparent for those with braces, and unfortunately, the brackets and wires don’t do any favors for patients who are trying to floss correctly. That said, here are some tips that are certain to help:

  • Floss daily—no exceptions! You can rinse your mouth with water beforehand to help dislodge food particles.
  • You might consider using a floss threader designed for patients with braces; this is certain to make things easier! A Waterpik, which relies on a gentle pressurized stream of water, can also be used if you have access to one.
  • Traditional (waxed) floss can be used, but you’ll want to thread it carefully under the main wire of the braces before passing it between two teeth. An 18-inch strand should suffice. Be sure not to snap the floss!

In any case, no matter how diligent you are about at-home oral hygiene during your time with braces, you’ll still need to keep up with your regularly scheduled checkups to ensure that your treatment stays on track and your oral health remains in tip-top shape!

About the Practice

Our team here at Super Braces of Worcester is excited to provide families in the Worcester community with high-quality care! We’re thrilled to offer a wide range of orthodontic services for patients of all ages, including traditional metal braces as well as Invisalign clear aligners. If you have any questions about the blog or you’d like to arrange a visit for yourself or a loved one, feel free to give us a call today or visit us online for additional information or assistance. Telephone: (508) 755-2207.

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