Oral Hygiene

Now that you have your braces in place, it is just as important to maintain a good oral hygiene regimen throughout the length of your treatment as it was before braces were placed.  Braces, wires, bands and elastic hooks can all trap food particles and make it more difficult to remove plaque from your teeth.  Careful brushing and flossing, preferably after every meal/snack, is the best way to keep a healthy mouth.

There are many different types of tools to assist cleaning when braces are present:

Soft Bristle Toothbrush

brush3 We recommend using a soft or extra soft bristle toothbrush.  Any size or head shape is fine, just find one that allows you to reach all of your teeth.  Use a gentle circular motion making sure you reach above, below and between your brackets.  Don’t forget to brush the biting surfaces and the inside surfaces of your teeth also.

Floss and Floss Threader

floss2Flossing daily is even more important now that brackets are on the teeth. Because a wire is present the technique is a little different. Thread your floss through the floss threader (like a needle and thread). Then use the floss threader to go between the teeth and under the wire. Now you are able to floss that contact. Do this between each of the teeth. As it takes longer to floss with braces many people like to do it at night before bed when they have more time.

Using an Interdental Toothbrush

interdentalAn interdental toothbrush allows you to get between the braces and under the wire to remove food particle and plaque. Please use it gently so not to damage your wires. Be careful while using so not to poke your gums.

Fluoride Mouth Rinse

rinseWe recommend for all patients in braces to be using a fluoride mouthrinse daily. This helps protect teeth from white spot lesions and cavities. Swish for one minute once a day. You can also add an antibacterial mouthrinse if your gums are puffy or bleeding.

Topical Fluoride

brush1Sometimes during treatment we will recommend a prescription fluoride toothpaste (Prevident 5000) if oral hygiene is not as good as we need it. This is used at night instead of toothpaste and is not rinsed to allow it to stay on the teeth all night. Fluoride helps strengthen the outer layer of teeth to protect against cavities and white spots.

Retainer Care

retainerBrush your removable appliance every day as part of your regular brushing and flossing schedule. Plaque can accumulate on your appliance just as it does on your teeth. You can use an Efferdent or Polident denture-cleaning tablet in a glass of water and soak your appliance for 20-30 minutes. This will make your appliance taste better and help remove plaque from your retainer. Remember to call us if anything happens to your retainer or it is not fitting the same.

Glupker Orthodontics

  • Holland Office - 203 Riley St., Holland, MI 49424 Phone: 616-399-7110
  • Zeeland Office - 25 N. State St., Zeeland, MI 49464 Phone: 616-772-0470

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