It’s probably no surprise to you that keeping up with your oral hygiene routine is essential for keeping a happy smile. However, when you finally make the decision to get braces from Dr. Jared Lee, brushing your teeth consistently and effectively becomes that much more important!
Let’s paint a picture for you. Imagine you move into a new home with a clean carpet. You need somewhere to sit, so you bring in a couch. No big deal, right? Well, now imagine years later when you decide to rearrange your living room. You pick up the couch, and what do you see? It’s the color your carpet used to be!
That’s exactly what it’s like if you don’t spend the right amount of time learning how to properly brush your teeth with braces. Over time, poor brushing habits could lead to spotty or even yellowed teeth, and that’s not the picture-perfect finish you’re looking for on the day you get your braces off! Not to mention, without the help of good oral hygiene, you may have to wear braces for a longer period.
Dr. Lee wants to make sure your smile is as beautiful and pearly white as possible when the day comes to remove those brackets and wires. While he takes care of your teeth at your appointments, it’s up to you to take care of them in between. Read our guide below to get tips for brushing your teeth with braces.
Tip: Brush carefully and take your time
Now that you’ve learned a little about the tools you’ll be using to care for your smile, it’s time to learn how to use them. From start to finish, your new brushing routine has several different steps that are all important to keeping your teeth white and bright.
Step one: rinse your mouth with water to remove leftover food particles – yuck!
Step two: This step is all about the angles. Hold your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle to brush both the exposed parts of your teeth, the brackets, and your gumline. You’ll need to spend about five seconds brushing each tooth or 30 seconds on each section of your mouth. That adds up to about two to three minutes of brushing time, total. Make sure you don’t cut corners!
Step three: Don’t forget to brush your tongue! It is essential to brush your entire mouth to get rid of bacteria that cause plaque buildup and bad breath.
Tip: Don’t forget to floss
After years of visiting your dentist, we know that you’ve heard this rule many, many times. We also know that not everyone flosses as they should! While that may be the case, Dr. Lee is here to tell you that there is no time like the present to start flossing, especially now that you have braces.
Step one: Thread the dental floss through the eye of the floss threader. Then, push the head of the floss threader over or under the wire and between your teeth.
Step two: Remove the threader and lay it to the side. Floss each side of your tooth in a back and forth motion like you normally would without braces.
Step three: Pick up your floss threader and repeat this step by moving to the next tooth!
Be sure you don’t skip this step. It is vital to the quality of your smile that you keep up with flossing throughout your treatment. The person in the mirror on the day your braces come off will thank you for it!
Tip: Brush after every meal
Usually, dentists recommend brushing your teeth once in the morning and at night for the best smile possible. When it comes to brushing your teeth with braces, however, you need to brush a little more often.
Dr. Lee advises his patients to brush their teeth after every meal. That is because braces add a lot of surface area to your mouth, which means more hiding places for bacteria to settle into. After a while, that hidden bacteria causes plaque buildups, which could lead to discoloration at best and gum disease at worst.
By brushing after every meal, you can significantly cut down the possibility of bacteria buildup. The result? A clean, white smile at the end of this orthodontic journey.
Tip: Get to know your home care kit!
When Dr. Lee first applies your braces, he won’t send you home empty-handed! That first day with your new set of wires, we’ll give you a home care kit filled with tools that will help you take care of your teeth from that day forward. This kit includes a floss threader, a soft-bristled toothbrush, and a proxabrush. Each tool plays a unique role in your oral health to clean those hard-to-reach places and be sure you’ll have a pearly white smile in no time.
Floss Threader – like a needle, this tool helps you maneuver around the wires in your mouth to floss between your teeth without a hitch.
Toothbrush – our team recommends a soft-bristled toothbrush to capably clean your teeth without harming the brackets. The soft bristles are better able to reach down between each bracket, making it easier to clean these tough-to-reach spaces.
Proxabrush – this tool looks almost like a pipe cleaner, and it works practically the same! The Proxabrush allows you to clean the spaces between brackets or wires that your toothbrush just can’t reach.
Not only does this kit help give you a headstart toward caring for your teeth with braces, but it also teaches you which tools you’ll need throughout the time you’ll be wearing them so you can replace them as needed. If you have any questions about the contents of your home care kit, don’t hesitate to call Dr. Lee – our team always has your back!
Tip: Choose Dr. Lee for all your orthodontic needs!
The best thing you can do for your smile is to choose the right orthodontist, and Dr. Lee is the best around! Our team makes orthodontics fun, so you can enjoy your smile success journey from start to finish. If you’re ready to get started on a beautiful smile, schedule your free consultation today!