Clean teeth and healthy dental practices while wearing braces are necessary since braces can easily trap food and plaque. When that happens, the chances of tooth decay go through the roof.
Let us look at some helpful tips to ensure your child’s braces stay clean and in good shape so that they can function properly.
1. Brush and floss after meals and right before bed
The American Dental Association advises brushing two times daily. This is important for everyone. But, it’s especially important for those with braces. Food tends to get stuck in braces pretty easily, which can lead to acid buildup and cavities. This is why most orthodontists advise brushing 4 times per day; in the morning after breakfast, after lunch or right after school, after dinner and at bedtime. The extra brushing helps the mouth stay debris-free, helps fight cavities and prevents potential damage to the braces.
Brushing alone can’t remove all the food particles between your teeth, especially with the brackets and rubber bands. And as the alignment of teeth changes, some cracks and crevices may harbor more debris than your child is used to. Which is why we suggest using some helpful flossing tools! Dental picks, floss threaders*, superfloss, and waterpiks are all great tools that provide more powerful flossing solutions for those in braces. Each tool is designed to improve the effectiveness of flossing for those wearing braces. We suggest researching a couple of them to discover the best solution for your child.
2. Swish with water after eating
Swishing water around the mouth after meals is a great way to remove bits of food caught in braces. The water will be able to get rid of a lot of the stuck food, but harder to reach debris will need to be brushed or flossed away.
Besides, swishing warm salt water can relieve irritation from braces, reducing the possibility of an infection and promotes a healthy mouth.
3. Replace toothbrushes regularly
It is recommended to replace toothbrushes every 3-4 months for healthy and clean teeth. Children and teenagers with braces wear out their toothbrushes faster. This is mostly from the damage to the bristles by the braces. In addition to the 3-4-months rule, if you notice the bristles are getting worn or frayed, it is time for a new toothbrush.
4. Stay away from hard and sticky foods
While without braces, hard and sticky foods can damage your teeth. The damage is worse with braces. Hard food can cause the bands or wires in braces to snap. Sticky foods, on the other hand, can get wedged in the braces and can be really difficult to remove. For children and teenagers with braces, these types of food should be avoided to keep their teeth clean and healthy.
5. Visit your dentist
Routine dental check-ups and cleanings are important while you have braces. The orthodontist helps straighten teeth. The dentist is there to make sure they stay healthy. Braces make teeth more prone to plaque and tartar accumulation, so cleanings are actually more important now than ever. Therefore, we recommend frequent or 3-month cleanings.
Pediatric and teen oral care in Fleming Island, FL to the rescue!
From your child’s first visit to receiving oral care and advice for healthy and clean teeth, our doctors and staff at Pediatric Dentistry in Fleming Island, FL make visits to the dentist fun and worthwhile for both parents and kids.
Book an appointment with Pediatric Dentistry in Fleming Island, FL today or call (904) 215-7800 to learn more about caring for teeth with braces and keeping them clean and healthy.
*We are not an affiliate of Amazon, nor are we sponsored with the recommended flosser company. We just recommend these and they can easily be found on Amazon