For many patients of all ages, getting braces can often seem like the process of perfect teeth for years to come. And for many, the dream and the reality aren’t far off. Braces really can help ensure that you have straighter teeth for the rest of your life. However, it’s also important to remember that braces can also increase the chance that you suffer from gum disease, cavities, and decay. Despite wearing braces, if you don’t take care of your teeth and decay or infection sets in, it could mean that one of the teeth that could have been perfect and straight could possibly have to be replaced with a dental bridge or implant.
As one of Downey California’s leading dentists, we’ve helped countless patients get the teeth they’ve always wanted with braces.
Brush, Brush, Brush, Brush (Hint: Brush 4 Times a Day, If You Can)
Brushing your teeth when you have braces isn’t incredibly hard or different from “normal” brushing. Most orthodontists will recommend a soft-bristled brush, or even an electric toothbrush. The most important aspect is to brush every part of your braces and your teeth. It should take at least 2 minutes to brush, and you should also be sure to rinse your mouth with either (or both) water or mouthwash.
Pro Tip: Brushing twice as much as your normally would can make your toothbrush wear out much faster. Make a point to stockpile toothbrushes so you’re never caught without one!
When to brush teeth with braces
In most cases, it’s best to try and brush your teeth after you’ve eaten. However, in many cases it just doesn’t make sense. Who has a toothbrush available when they’re at school or at work? If you can’t brush your teeth after meals, just try to rinse your mouth with water right after you’ve eaten . Remember this: the most common recommendation for patients with braces is to brush 4 times a day – after eating breakfast, after lunch and dinner, and right before bed. If you can get even close to this, you should be fine!
Don’t slack when it comes to flossing
While flossing is a bit more difficult for patients with braces, it is just as (if not more) important. When you have braces and when you don’t, it’s important to floss once per day to help get rid of any leftover food particles or plaque sticking to your teeth. You can also find floss designed specifically for braces to make the whole process easier.
Why it matters
With braces, you can get straighter teeth that offer you much greater confidence. However, this isn’t the case if your teeth are stained and full of cavities. While braces have the benefit of straightening your teeth, their downside is they can harbor quite a bit of plaque and bacteria. Take care of this by beginning a diligent oral healthcare routine.