Many people with braces often find it hard to brush their teeth properly. The metal brackets, the ties, and the orthodontic wires often seem to get in the way and prevent the bristles of the brush from penetrating and removing debris from the deeper, tight spaces between the teeth. As a result, regular brushing and flossing become even more critical when you are wearing braces.
If you have recently got a set of braces and have difficulty brushing your teeth, this article is for you.
How To Keep Teeth Clean With Braces?
Optimal teeth cleaning often becomes a challenging task when wearing braces. This is because the metal braces serve as a stagnation point. Food particles get entrapped and provide an ideal environment for harmful bacteria to grow and produce toxins that cause gum inflammation.
Unfortunately, regular oral hygiene measures like the conventional toothbrush and the floss cannot completely remove the plaque deposits from around the teeth and the brackets. Therefore, dentists recommend adding an interdental toothbrush to your oral hygiene routine as well.
An interdental brush is specially designed so that its bristles can easily penetrate the difficult-to-clean areas between the teeth and ensure optimal tooth cleaning. The British Dental Association also recommends using fluoride toothpaste to prevent tooth decay.
How To Brush Your Teeth With Braces Electric Toothbrush?
Electric toothbrushes are an excellent option when it comes to oral hygiene maintenance with braces. According to the American Dental Association, individuals who wear teeth braces may find an electric toothbrush more comfortable to use – although both manual and electric toothbrushes are effective at plaque removal. The only drawbacks of electric toothbrushes are their higher cost and the need for changing their brush heads frequently.
The technique for brushing your teeth is similar whether you are using a powered or a manual toothbrush.
- To begin with, rinse your mouth with water or mouth rinse to remove larger food particles.
- Then start brushing your teeth by placing the electric brush at a 45-degree angle from your teeth and cleaning both the teeth’ inner and outer surfaces.
- Next, place the toothbrush over brackets and wires to remove any food debris stuck between them.
- Finally, clean the area above and below the brackets to ensure optimal cleaning.
- After cleaning your teeth with an electric brush, you may also clean the spaces between the teeth with an interdental brush, dental floss or a water irrigator.
This is one of the advantages of Invisalign, you simply remove the appliance and clean your teeth normally, replacing your appliance straightaway. Take a look at this article if you’d like to compare Invisalign versus regular braces.
Do I Have To Brush My Teeth Every Time I Eat With Braces?
Typically, brushing your teeth twice daily is sufficient for enjoying impeccable oral health. However, you will have to brush your teeth more frequently – especially after a meal. The reason is that the chances of food impaction – which can lead to plaque accumulation and periodontal disease – are considerably increased when one is wearing braces. To complicate matters further, tooth cleaning also becomes a challenging task for the ones who are undergoing orthodontic treatment with braces. Therefore, you must brush your teeth after every meal.
Effects Of Not Brushing Teeth With Braces?
Orthodontic appliances such as the brackets, the rubber ties and the dental wire serve as sites of food impaction around the teeth. If regular oral hygiene through brushing and flossing is ignored, a thin, sticky layer called the dental plaque – forms on the teeth over time.
With time, the plaque hardens and converts into dental calculus or tartar. Both plaque and calculus offer a haven for harmful bacteria, which utilise the sugars in the food debris and release toxins that cause the saliva to become acidic. When this happens, the minerals from the teeth are dissolved into the saliva, making them vulnerable to the development of teeth cavities.
Not only this, the toxins released by the bacteria damage the gums, leading to periodontal inflammation.
How To Floss With Braces?
Flossing between your teeth can be a challenging job when you’re wearing braces. Conventional dental floss often tears easily when it comes in contact with the braces. Therefore, it is recommended to use waxed dental floss interdental cleaning with braces. Here’s how you should floss your teeth:
- Cut a 12-24 inch piece of a waxed dental floss
- Thread the floss around the wire and the teeth
- Wrap the ends of the floss around your index to make handling easier
- Gently press the floss between the two teeth, and move it up and down in a sliding fashion. Go up the side of one tooth up to the gum line. Follow the same method for the other side.
- Remove the floss and unthread it from the wire – making sure not to use too much force as it may result in the dislodgment of the wire itself.
- Move to the next teeth pair and continue until all the teeth have been thoroughly cleaned.
Toothbrushes For Use With Braces?
When it comes to oral hygiene maintenance with braces, you can use any toothbrush, powered or manual. What’s more important is brushing your teeth properly – and knowing when it is time to brush and floss. The American Dental Association states that both powered and manual toothbrushes can provide optimal cleaning – provided they are used correctly. Various dental companies offer toothbrushes and other oral hygiene products that are specifically made for individuals with braces. You should consult your orthodontist regarding a toothbrush that best suits your oral hygiene needs.
Looking for a Cambridgeshire specialist orthodontic clinic? Elysmiles should be your first choice. In addition to having state-of-the-art diagnostic and therapeutic equipment, we also boast a team of highly qualified and experienced orthodontists who can fix even the most complicated orthodontic problems. So, book an appointment with us today and let us give you a healthy and lasting smile.