Orthodontics provides so many benefits for your teeth, gums and oral health. However, dental braces can make it more challenging to keep your teeth clean. It is vital to make sure to maintain the health of your teeth and gums with braces on, but you need to have the right tools at home to do so. Listed below are essential tools to use while you have braces on your teeth.
It is essential to use an electric toothbrush while you have braces on. Electric toothbrushes can perform more brush strokes in 2 minutes to compared to manual brushing. Electric toothbrushes also do a great job of cleaning around orthodontic bands and brackets that are difficult to access.
A water flosser is a great idea to use to clean between teeth and around brackets and bands. You can use either water or mouth wash. A great idea is to use a mouth wash containing fluoride to reduce your cavity risk. The water flosser flushes out food particles and bacteria, reducing plaque accumulation.
Fluoride is an essential component in keeping teeth healthy with braces. Because plaque accumulation can be more challenging to prevent, fluoride strengthens the enamel of the teeth, preventing tooth decay. Use fluoride in your toothpaste twice a day and as an added dose, use a mouthwash containing fluoride once a day. Remember not to eat, drink or rinse for 30 minutes after fluoride so it can work properly.
Super Floss/ Floss Threader
Flossing is more difficult with braces on, so you will need to use floss specifically designed to help get under the archwire. Super floss is a pre-cut piece of floss with a rigid end that is easy to stick between the teeth near the gum line. Floss threaders are loops that are used to pull the floss between the teeth. Both super floss and floss threaders work well, so use whichever you prefer.
A proxabrush is a tool designed to help clean between brackets. It looks like a small pipe cleaner with thin bristles that dislodge plaque on the sides of the brackets, accessing areas that are difficult with the toothbrush and floss.
Lastly, it is vital to see your dental hygienist regularly for cleanings when you have braces on. Your dental hygienist can clean spots that are difficult to access at home and discuss areas that require more attention. Often, cleanings are recommended every 3-4 months when braces are on. If you have any questions about tools to use at home for cleaning around braces, contact us today to schedule an appointment.