Keeping Your Smile Clean With Braces

Braces, while transformative, can be tiny fortresses for debris and lead to potential dental problems. But with the right knowledge and tools at your disposal, you can turn braces care from a daunting task into a set of simple, effective habits. At Manhattan Family Orthodontics, we’ve brought together the essential tips and techniques to maintain a healthy, happy smile throughout your orthodontic journey.

The Hurdles Of Braces Care

Keeping your smile and braces clean is key to keeping your treatment on schedule. Braces can act as food prisons, holding on to tiny bits of food that, if left for too long, can cause some serious problems. From cavities, gum disease, and even disrupted treatments, an unhealthy smile is an unhappy smile.

When you have braces, being able to get into the places that plaque and debris hide in is like having a superpower. That’s where tools like brushing and flossing come into play. By using these tools, you can knock plaque and bacteria to the curb to keep your teeth and gums healthy. Plus, staying on top of your hygiene can reduce the chance of having spots on your teeth after your braces come off. 

Cleaning Tools

With braces, brushing and flossing your teeth might seem like a challenge. But with the right steps and tools, you’ll be a cleaning pro in no time.

Essential Brushing: First up, your toothbrush. You’ll want a soft-bristled or electric toothbrush with a “gentle” mode. These toothbrushes are kind to your teeth and appliances but tough on plaque and food particles.

Once you’ve got your toothbrush, then comes toothpaste. You’ll want to avoid toothpaste that promotes whitening, as it can leave you with the unwanted spots we mentioned. Instead, keep it simple with fluoride toothpaste to keep your teeth strong and cavity-free.

Flossing Tools For Braces: While brushing your teeth knocks out a lot of the hidden plaque and debris hiding in your smile, flossing is the detective that finds out the very last of the remaining problems. Floss sneaks under your wires and between your teeth to remove the last holdouts that were missed during brushing.

Our doctors recommend a floss threader to get between your teeth and your appliance effectively. They’re one of the best ways to floss your teeth with braces. You can use a water flosser or Waterpik as an alternative, which uses water to get between your teeth rather than a thread.

Techniques To Your Tools

Now that you know the tools to keep your braces in their best shape, let’s go over the techniques and methods we recommend to use them best.

Brushing Strategies: Technique is super important! Angle your brush at 45 degrees to make sure you’re getting under your wires and around the brackets. Brush gently in small circles, making sure to target all areas: the fronts, backs, and tops of your teeth. Don’t forget to brush along your gums, but be gentle as you do.

Aim to brush after every meal and before bed. That’ll be around four times a day, which sounds like a lot, but it’s worth it to keep your mouth healthy and your braces clean. Brushing right means you’re on your way to a great smile!

Mastering Flossing: Take a piece of floss and, using the floss threader, pull it under your wire. Gently move the floss up and down the side of each tooth and under the gumline. It’s important to be gentle to avoid hurting your gums.

Flossing should be done at least once a day, every day. It might take a little longer with braces, but it’ll keep everything healthy and happy.

Keeping Your Smile Clean With Braces

Beyond The Basics

While brushing and flossing with braces is important for your smile to stay healthy, there are a few more tips and tricks to elevate your hygiene game to the next level. Here’s what you need to know: 

Eating Smart With Braces

Some foods are tough on braces. Stay away from sticky, hard, or any foods that could get stuck in your braces or even break them. Eating lots of fruits and vegetables isn’t just good for you but also helps keep your teeth clean.

The Importance of Orthodontic Check-Ups

Don’t skip your appointments with Manhattan Family Orthodontics. These check-ups are super important for our team to monitor your smile progress and make any necessary adjustments.

Mouthwash Rinse 

After you brush and floss, use some fluoride mouthwash to clean the very last hidden debris out of your smile. Swish around the mouthwash for around 30-60 seconds to cover every corner of your mouth.

Stay Hydrated, Stay Clean

Drinking water throughout the day helps wash away any food particles that might be hanging out in your braces. It’s like giving your mouth a mini shower!

Keeping Your Smile Clean With Braces

Achieving Bright Smiles At Manhattan Family Orthodontics

With these strategies and tips, you’re well on your way to maintaining a bright, healthy smile that shines through your orthodontic journey. Don’t hesitate to reach out for advice, schedule your regular check-ups, and keep us in the loop with your progress. Ready to start your journey to a new smile in New York? Find us on Fifth Avenue or East 58th Street and schedule your free consultation at Manhattan Family Orthodontics today, and let’s make your dream smile a reality!