Oral care is more important than ever while you are wearing braces. The braces themselves create some unique challenges and concerns, and when you finally do get your braces off, you want your smile to look amazing. Follow these oral care tips to keep your teeth and gums as healthy as possible.
Steps to Maintain a Health Oral Health Routine With Braces
Choose the Right Foods
Foods with a high acid content can wear down the tooth enamel over time. You don't have to avoid them entirely, but you should try to cut down on them and fill your diet with as many low-acid foods as possible. Here are a few examples of both.
- High-Acid Foods – Tomatoes, pineapple, soft drinks, sports drinks, vinegar, salsa
- Low-Acid Foods – Bananas, mangoes, carrots, cucumbers, milk, water, meat, eggs, pasta
Another consideration is how hard the food is. Especially hard foods can actually damage the apparatus of the braces. Foods like large nuts and activities like chewing ice should be avoided entirely. If the braces are damaged, contact your orthodontist immediately. Sticky foods like gum and caramels should also be removed from the diet.
Practice Smart Oral Care at Home
When you have braces, you need to add a few extra steps to your normal oral care routine of brushing and flossing.
- Remove elastics before brushing
- Gently brush the braces, and try to get the bristles into any nooks and gaps.
- Carefully inspect the braces after brushing to check if anything is stuck in them.
- Consider switching to an electric toothbrush.
- Don't forget to floss. It's still possible and just as important when you have braces.
Focus on Fluoride
Wearing braces can accelerate the causes of tooth decay and fluoride is your best defense. Make sure you are using a toothpaste with fluoride and drinking as much fluoridated tap water as possible. Your orthodontist may also recommend a fluoride-rich mouthwash depending on your situation.
Rely on The Happy Tooth to Make Braces Better
No one looks forward to getting braces, but there are ways to make them more comfortable, less embarrassing, and better at correcting your smile. Partner with a team of orthodontists that makes the patient the number one priority. At the Happy Tooth, we do everything possible to help you achieve the smile you want. Contact us to learn more about your options for braces.