It is usually tricky cleaning your teeth with braces installed. Your teeth need extra attention to protect them from decay, staining and gum disease. However, when brushing your braces be sure not to damage your braces in the process. Activities to avoid include eating chewy, sticky, hard and crunchy foods, biting your lips, breathing excessively through your mouth and pushing your tongue against your teeth. It’s up to you to keep your entire mouth clean and off cavities. Plaque needs to be removed from your teeth a couple of times a day. All the brackets and wires in your mouth create places where plaque can easily hide and settle. If not cleaned off, it can cause damage in your mouth.
People are advised to brush their teeth atleast twice a day. With braces, one has to brush their teeth after every meal because food particles easily become trapped in the braces; the longer the particles are trapped in the braces, the greater risk one has in developing dental problems. Use a soft toothbrush with round bristles or an electrical toothbrush.
How to brush
Always start by rinsing your teeth with warm water to loosen the food stuck in the braces. It is important to clean each tooth at the gum line, above and below the brackets. Always ensure you rinse perfectly after brushing.
Floss at least once in a day, making sure that you clean in between the braces and under the wires. One can use orthodontic floss which is easily available at drug stores. Waxed floss is also easy to use and slide in between the teeth. Be sure to use the right brush and floss but if you are unsure, just ask for advice from your orthodontist.
Watching what you eat
When you are wearing braces, be sure to watch what you eat. Eating food that is too sugary and starchy can cause plaque to build up around the brackets. The plaque causes the teeth to stain, have tooth cavities and can also lead to gum disease.
Brace wearers are not advised to eat hard food products as they can spoil the brackets and wires in the braces. They easily stick in the wires and are hard to clean up. When cleaning them, floss and then brush immediately to prevent them permanently sticking.
When you have braces, always ensure that you take good care of them as they are delicate.