If you’ve just had braces applied, oral hygiene as you know it is about to change. You can’t keep on with your oral routines in the same fashion that you did prior to braces, or you’ll open yourself up to bacteria and gum disease, possibly even cavities. Along with regular checkups and cleanings, you’ll need to have good habits at home.
Braces need extra care. They’re bulky and they trap food in ways that will surprise you. Each time you brush, be prepared to see lots of food debris in your sink when you spit, and you can be certain that if you’re only brushing, you’re leaving behind even more food debris.
When you have braces, it’s recommended that you brush following every meal, not just twice a day. If you can’t brush, it’s essential that you rinse out your mouth and spit several times to clear out as much remaining food as possible. Brush gently around each bracket, first angled up along the gumline and bracket and then again along the top line of the bracket. Don’t just scrub, but be gentle and persistent, for a minimum of two minutes.
Flossing is a big challenge with braces. It takes more time and more effort. The floss must be threaded up, between each bracket and beneath the wire, threading it so that you can get the floss between each tooth. This must be repeated for each bracket in your entire mouth.
After flossing, you can use a rinse of half hydrogen peroxide and half water. Swish it in your mouth and allow it to penetrate the areas you’ve opened up with brushing and flossing. You’ll see the bubbles working! This can be a major help in maintaining gum health while wearing braces.
Talk to Sherman Oaks orthodontist Dr. Fotovat for extra tips on keeping your mouth fresh and clean while wearing braces so that when your braces come off, healthy white teeth are waiting for you.