Strong oral care habits are essential for braces to work properly and align your teeth according to plan. Metal braces (different from the “Invisalign” treatment) may cause some discomfort. By sticking to a good teeth cleaning regimen, you can maximize the effectiveness of your braces and avoid soreness.
Pay attention to your daily dental routine and follow these tips to have a smooth experience during the months you wear braces:
1. Brush and floss frequently – Make it a habit to clean teeth not just in the morning and right before sleep — but after every meal. Lightly brush your braces and circle the bristles around every nook and gap. Brush the chewing surfaces and the back of your mouth. Gentle flossing is also important to remove any food debris stuck between the crevices. (If you’ve recently eaten fruit – or drank fruit juice – rinse with water and wait 30 minutes to brush. This protects the enamel.)
2. Make good food choices – What you eat often affects the health of teeth, especially while wearing braces. Cut back on highly acidic foods such as pineapple, tomatoes, carbonated drinks, and vinegar. These foods can erode tooth enamel. Low-acid foods such as mangos, carrots, cucumbers, pasta, and eggs are excellent meal and snack options as long as they are soft enough to chew. Avoid hard foods like popcorn, hard (and sticky) candies, nuts, and chips; they may get stuck and cause pain — or damage the wiring.
3. Use an alcohol-free mouthwash – Mouthwash helps flush out odour-causing bacteria from hard-to-reach areas in your mouth. Choose an alcohol-free mouthwash that contains active ingredients to fight gum disease, tooth decay, bad breath, and plaque buildup. Avoid mouthwash brands that contain ethanol; this ingredient causes burning sensations and leaves the mouth dry. Mouthwash should never replace brushing and flossing in your daily dental regimen and must only be used as a supplement to that routine.
4. Drink plenty of water – Besides keeping your whole body hydrated, drinking water prevents anaerobic bacteria from flourishing among the gums, teeth, and tongue — and causing bad breath. Drinking a glassful or two after a meal (if you’re unable to brush) also helps remove food debris.
5. Visit your Orthodontist regularly – Commit to attending regular check-ups and scheduled adjustments for your braces. Appropriately-timed appointments will allow your Dentist or Orthodontist to track the movement of your teeth and detect any issues that could potentially hamper the progress of your treatment.
Keep your mouth healthy when straightening teeth with braces. With proper cleaning and attention to what you eat and drink, you’ll achieve a winning smile.
For expert guidance for the health of your teeth, book an appointment with one of our caring dentists at Simcoe Smile Dental. We provide a wide range of dental care services, including braces, tailored to each patient’s needs. Contact us today at (289) 312-1482.