Caring for your braces
When undergoing any kind of orthodontic treatment, you may feel excited at the prospect of a beautiful and straighter smile. However, it is crucial that you keep your teeth in tip-top shape on the journey to your new smile so that once your braces are removed, you can enjoy a healthy and aesthetic grin!
Tooth decay and braces
When you have braces, you are at a greater risk of experiencing tooth decay. This is due to the fact that the very design of braces makes it easy for food to become lodged in between your brackets and wires. If this food is not sufficiently removed, it can lead to all sorts of nasty issues – one of these being tooth decay.
Cleaning braces is a little trickier and time-consuming than your regular brushing routine as there are more surfaces to cover. Plaque can adhere to these surfaces leading to tooth decay. This is why it is vital that you diligently follow a solid oral hygiene routine when you are undergoing this type of orthodontic treatment.
Sufficiently cleaning your teeth with braces
When fighting off tooth decay with braces, you will need to arm yourself with some tools. These include:
- A good toothbrush – an electric one is a great option!
- Specialised dental floss
- Interdental toothbrush
Brush regularly: That idea of brushing your teeth twice a day? Toss it! If you have braces, you should be brushing your teeth more frequently than this. Aim to brush your teeth three times a day, and if you can find the time, four would be even better! If for some reason you can’t brush your teeth after you eat, you should drink lots of water and swish your mouth out with water.
Floss your teeth every day: just as it is important to clean in between your teeth before your braces were fitted, it is crucial that you maintain this practice throughout your orthodontic treatment. Specialised floss can make doing this easier. This dental floss can be found in most pharmacies and supermarkets.
Avoid whitening products: it may be tempting to use whitening products in the effort to have not only a straight smile at the end of your treatment but a bright one too! However, these products should be avoided. The reason for this is because the whitening product will only work on the place it touches, meaning you’ll have uneven colour when your braces get removed.
Use fluoride: fluoride is a fantastic substance when it comes to fighting off tooth decay as it strengthens your teeth. Be sure to check the ingredients on your toothpaste tube to ensure that you are using a formula that contains fluoride.
Schedule professional cleanings: once every few months, you should make an appointment with your oral hygienist to give your teeth and braces a thorough clean. This will get rid of any tartar build-up and keep your braces and teeth sparkling clean and in good health.
Following these tips can help you to avoid any nasty surprises such as tooth decay when undergoing your orthodontic treatment.