Keeping your teeth clean and free from cavities and tooth decay is always important, but it’s even more critical when you’re wearing dental braces. When cleaning your mouth while you are wearing braces, you need to pay utmost attention not only to your teeth and gums, but also to the brackets and wires that you’re wearing as a part of the dental braces.
If you take good care of your teeth while wearing braces, you have a perfectly straight teeth as well as stain-free and cavity-free teeth, at the end of the orthodontic treatment. So, the extra time that you spend to take care of your teeth today will be well-worth it in the near future.
Here are a few ways how you can avoid cavities while wearing Dental braces or Invisalign:
1) Brush the right way
Start your Oral Cleaning routine by rinsing your mouth with water before brushing. This helps to loosen the food particles trapped by your braces. This is important because the less time that food sits on your teeth, the less likely it is to cause tooth decay.
While brushing, hold your brush at a 45-degree angle, then angle the brushstrokes down on top of each bracket. Use gentle, circular strokes to clean your teeth as well as your gum line. You’ve got to brush in and around all of the brackets and wires. Don’t forget to also brush your tongue, the inside of your cheeks, and the roof of your mouth.
We recommend you to use an interdental toothbrush which is extremely helpful for cleaning braces, along with your regular toothbrush.
2) Don’t ignore your Dental Floss
“Your loss if you forget to Floss” Yes, you can (and need to) floss when you’re wearing Dental Braces. At the beginning of your Orthodontic treatment, every dentist shows you how to floss the right way without causing discomfort to your braces. A floss threader can be a very helpful oral cleaning tool to get the floss behind those brackets in your braces. These floss threaders are easily available at any Generic Pharmacy or Super Markets (right next to the regular dental floss). Or, if you want an option that makes your job even more easier, go for water flossers.
3) Stick to a Tooth-Friendly Diet
Every Dentist or Orthodontist will recommend you to avoid food and beverages that are high in acidic content as can damage tooth enamel when consumed frequently. Refer to the list below to know what kind of acidic food and drinks you might have to avoid:
In addition to the ones above, you might want to forego on starchy and sugary foods that may stick to your teeth. This includes gum, candy, chips, muesli, Fruit Bars, toffee etc. Saliva is your body’s natural defense against tooth decay. You need to give saliva plenty of time to wash away acids that form after eating and drinking.
There are foods that can loosen, break or bend wires and bands when you are wearing braces.
Avoid hard foods such as nuts and hard cookies. Items such as apples and carrots should be chopped into small pieces before eating to reduce the stress on your braces.
4) Use Mouthwash & Toothpaste with Fluoride
One of the easiest ways to stay cavity free is by switching to toothpaste that contains fluoride. Fluoride makes your teeth more resistant to the acids produced after eating or drinking. It replaces the minerals that are lost during early stages of tooth decay. Since the risk of cavities are high while wearing braces, the dentists may prescribe other drugstore products with fluoride too that offer you additional protection.
Even after you’ve done a good job brushing and flossing, they aren’t just enough sometimes. Rinsing with a fluoride mouthwash should do the magic here . If you can’t rinse with a mouthwash then try to take out the time to rinse at least with water.
5) Visit your Orthodontist Regularly
Regular dental check-ups are something that are always important, but even more so when you are wearing braces. Make sure to visit your dentist every six months or as recommended by him in your case.
If you haven’t started your orthodontic treatment yet, ring us up and Dr. Schuyler, Our Chief Smile Architect, will be happy to give you a friendly consultation service and discuss treatment options with you.