Getting your teeth cleaned can be a messy and unpleasant task. There is always the chance of getting water, toothpaste, and even blood on your clothes or face while at the dentist’s office. Braces can become even more difficult to properly clean because they often get food stuck in hard-to-reach places. But there are some tricks you can use to keep your teeth sparkling white between visits to the dentist. This article will discuss five tips that will help you maintain a healthy smile with braces.
1) Use a straw when drinking sugary or acidic drinks
This will help keep the sugar and acid from coming into contact with your teeth. Like most people, you probably enjoy drinking soda, juice, and other sugary beverages. But these drinks can be very harmful to your teeth if consumed regularly. The sugar in these drinks will remain on your teeth for a long time unless you brush them off. The more prolonged sugar stays in contact with your teeth, the more damage it causes over time. This is why drinking through a straw can help to reduce this problem. If you do not have access to a toothbrush and paste after drinking these beverages, we would recommend rinsing with water.
2) Use a Waterpik
Waterpiks are great tools that can aid in the cleaning of teeth. They have been shown to reduce plaque and tartar by 30% compared with flossing alone. The pressure from the water is also more effective at removing food particles than using string floss, which makes it even more beneficial for people with braces.
If you do not have a Waterpik, you can still use string floss to clean your teeth. Be sure to use a gentle back and forth motion when cleaning around your braces. Do not force the floss under the wires, as this can damage them and make them more challenging to clean.
3) Clean your teeth after every meal
When you brush your teeth, be sure to use toothpaste that fights plaque and tartar. The fluoride in the toothpaste will help strengthen enamel and fight decay while preventing bacteria from sticking to the surface of your teeth.
Make sure you do not forget the areas around your braces when brushing, and be extra gentle. You should be sure to scrub all four sides of the bracket. If possible, try using an electric brush with soft bristles instead of a manual toothbrush. Electric brushes make it much easier to clean around braces since they require less manual effort.
4) Floss at least once a day
Flossing is one of the most important things you can do to keep your teeth clean, and it is imperative when you have braces. Flossing helps remove plaque, bacteria and debris between your teeth where a toothbrush cannot reach. It is also helpful for removing food particles that become stuck between your teeth.
Be sure to use a gentle back and forth motion when flossing around your braces. Do not force the floss under the wires, as this can damage them and make them more challenging to clean. If you find it difficult to floss with traditional string floss, many dental flossers can help make flossing easier.
In conclusion, there are many things you can do to help keep your teeth clean when you have braces. If you follow these tips, you will maintain a healthy smile while wearing braces. For more information, you can see Dr. Kathryn Swan at Swan Orthodontics located at Caledonia, MI.
For more tips on how to brush your teeth with braces please see this video!