When you have braces or an orthodontic applicance, it’s vital to brush and floss after every meal in order to keep your teeth and gums healthy throughout treatment. On the day you get your braces, our clinic staff will review oral hygiene care with you and provide an oral hygiene kit.
Brushing with Braces
Brush your teeth for two minutes after every meal with a soft-bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste. You can use a powered toothbrush to increase your brushing effectiveness.
Brush the outside and inside surfaces of your teeth using small, gentle, circular motions. The tooth surface between the braces and the gum line is the most difficult area to clean and requires extra attention.
Position the head of the toothbrush at a 45-degree angle to the gum line, with the bristles facing downward in the upper arch and upward in the lower arch. Brush the chewing surfaces and the inside surface of your front teeth using short, gentle, back-and-forth motions.
Flossing with Braces
To floss with braces, use a floss threader or special orthodontic floss (such as Easy Thread Floss by G.U.M.) to thread the floss behind each wire. Wrap the ends of the floss around your pointer fingers of both hands, leaving a few inches of taut floss between them.
Floss the sides of each tooth and beneath the gum line using an up and down motion. Repeat this process until you’ve flossed all of your teeth.
If you find that your floss is not removing all of the food particles between your teeth and around your braces, you may also use a water flosser!