Care and Use of Braces and Your Teeth

Brushing & Flossing

patient-education

You will notice that proper brushing is more important than ever with braces! Food can become caught in the brackets and between your teeth and can only be removed by brushing and flossing. If plaque remains on the teeth for any length of time, it can lead to potential decay. Brushing after meals should become part of your daily schedule. Use a soft toothbrush and brush at a 45-degree angle to the tooth in small circles above and below the brackets. Your toothbrush will wear out faster because of your appliances, so be sure to replace it whenever the bristles start to fray.

A WaterPik can be a useful addition, but it cannot remove the sticky plaque that adheres to the teeth. A Sonicare ultrasonic toothbrush can be used to help remove plaque. Flossing is important with braces and is accomplished using reusable floss threaders.

Eating Habits

Please take extra care with hard foods such as: whole fruits, corn on the cob, and large pieces of ice. It may be helpful to cut foods into small pieces first. It is best to save sticky foods such as starbursts and caramels as an occasional treat after your braces come off.

Foods to Avoid

Minimize sugar intake and eat less candy, ice cream, cake, cookies, gum and pie. Drink less pop/sodas and drinks with sugar.