Spring is a time for cleaning! You’ve probably tackled your home, your car, or your work. But what about your teeth? Proper dental hygiene is extremely important while you have braces, though we can recognize its difficult. Make sure you’re taking care of your teeth so your smile will be perfect once the braces are removed.
Follow these tips for a sparkling clean mouth.
Even though the brackets are covering your teeth, brushing is imperative. When cleaning a mouth full of braces, it is best to use a toothbrush with a small, compact head. The cleaning space in your mouth will be more limited due to the braces.
As your brush, begin by holding the toothbrush against the gum line at an angle of 45 degrees. You can brush in small circular motions covering the areas adjacent to the gums and then move downward toward the base of each tooth. Be sure to pay special attention to the brackets and wires of your braces. Plaque and particles of food can easily accumulate there.
Your braces can make flossing more time-consuming, but it is still necessary to clean between your teeth. To navigate the floss around your braces, you can use a threader, which is a small tool made of stiff nylon thread. The threader is a few inches in length and includes a loop at one end through which the floss is fed. Once the floss is through the loop, the threader should be pushed between the teeth. The stiff nylon pulls the floss with it. However, it may be necessary to angle the threader strategically, especially if your teeth are set quite closely.
If you find traditional flossing too difficult, try using a water pick. It uses a small nozzle to direct a concentrated stream of water at the areas around your braces and teeth. The water flushes away plaque, trapped food and bacterial acids.
Avoiding Tooth Whiteners
Although you may be anxious to have your teeth and braces sparkle, it is best to delay tooth-whitening until your braces have been removed. Since your brackets may prevent the whitening agents from reaching portions of your teeth, only the exposed areas of your tooth enamel will be whitened. As a result, after your braces are removed, you could end up with small yellow squares, where your brackets are now positioned.