Keeping your mouth and gums clean and healthy while undergoing orthodontic treatment can be challenging. Food and plaque can get stuck around braces. Even if you are wearing clear aligners, such as Invisalign®, hygiene efficiency is more important than you might think as you could be more vulnerable to gum disease. It's important to keep on top of the situation so dental disease does not take hold.
When your braces come off you'll want to see straight beautiful teeth that are free of cavities surrounded by healthy gums and you will as long as you brush and floss daily. It's challenging to clean your teeth with braces, but you can do it!
Let's review the best techniques. Always use fluoride toothpaste and a soft brush to clean your teeth. Start by cleaning the area between your gums and your braces. This is the most likely place that plaque, a sticky film that contains bacteria will collect. Angle your brush toward the gum line and brush gently with small side-to-side or circular motions when you finish these areas you can move to the other side of the braces and brush there after all the front surfaces of your teeth are clean brush the back surfaces that face your tongue using the same gentle side-to-side or circular strokes with the brush angle toward your gum. Finally, brush the chewing surfaces of your teeth. Small interdental brushes are ideal for cleaning around each bracket and beneath the arch wire that runs between them.
These brushes are inexpensive, and you can find them in any drugstore. When you're done brushing rinse your teeth with water.
Flossing is an important way to clean food debris and bacteria from between your teeth, but it may not be easy to thread the floss under the arch wire of your braces. There are however special tools to help you do this. An example is threader floss which has a rigid tip that is easy to slide between your teeth. After threading the floss beneath the arch wire, gently curve the floss around the tooth while moving it up and down the surface. By curving the floss, you get below the gums safely. Then to the other side remove the floss and move on to the next tooth. After you have brushed and flossed it's helpful to rinse with an antibacterial mouthwash to help remove food particles as well as kill bacteria. Fluoride rinses are also helpful to help strengthen your teeth against decay which is an even greater concern when you're wearing braces. Keeping your teeth and gums healthy now will ensure you get the best result from your orthodontic treatment.
If you have any questions on how to go about this make sure to ask at your next appointment.