Many children and adults wear braces. In fact, according to the American Association of Orthodontics, four million Americans are wearing braces today. If you’re a part of this number, effectively caring for your braces is required to get the results you’re looking for. Here are three tips to help you care for your braces and get the straight teeth you deserve.
1. Brush and Floss Regularly
Brushing and flossing when you have metal braces is different from what you’re used to. You need to be extra careful while brushing to not break the metal wires or dislodge any brackets while giving your teeth a good cleaning at the same time. Having a soft bristle toothbrush and using gentle pressure while brushing are two great ways to protect your braces. Along with brushing twice a day you’ll also need to floss at least once a day. You may notice more food debris getting stuck in between your teeth and braces than before braces, so it’s a good idea to carry floss with you to use after every meal.
2. Use an Oral Irrigator
An oral irrigator is a great investment for everyone, including those with straight teeth, but especially those with braces. This machine works by emitting water with moderate pressure which dislodges food and bacteria from your teeth and braces. While an oral irrigator is not a replacement for necessary brushing and flossing, you can achieve a nearly professional-level cleaning by combining the use of an oral irrigator with brushing and flossing.
3. Avoid Certain Foods
Caring for your braces involves more than your oral hygiene. You’ll also need to avoid certain foods that can be damaging to your braces. After you get braces, your orthodontist will provide you with a list of foods that are too hard, chewy, sticky, or tough for your braces to handle. Some of the foods that you should avoid if you have braces are hard nuts, sticky candies, bagels and tough meat. There are more foods you should avoid other than these, so be sure to avoid everything on the list given to you by your orthodontist or ask them if you are unsure.
As you can see, caring for your braces doesn’t have to be a chore. While there may be dietary changes required, it’ll all pay off when you end up with straight teeth and a beautiful smile. Are you ready to achieve the smile you’ve always wanted? Give us a call at Parker Orthodontics today!