Caring for Braces: Essential Tips for Brushing and Flossing

Caring for Braces: Essential Tips for Brushing and Flossing

Embarking on a journey with braces towards a straighter smile is an exciting time, but it also requires adopting a meticulous oral hygiene routine. The nooks and crannies created by braces can trap food particles and plaque, making your teeth more susceptible to decay and gum disease. Proper care, including diligent brushing and flossing, is paramount. Here’s a concise guide to help you maintain optimal oral health throughout your orthodontic treatment.

Brushing with Braces: Step by Step

Brushing your teeth when you have braces might seem daunting at first, but with the right technique and tools, it can become a simple part of your daily routine.

  1. Choose the Right Toothbrush: An orthodontic toothbrush or a soft-bristled electric toothbrush can be more effective at cleaning around braces. The shape of an orthodontic brush is designed to clean in and around the wires and brackets.
  2. Rinse First: Rinsing with water before brushing can help loosen any food particles stuck in and around the braces.
  3. Apply Fluoride Toothpaste: Use a pea-sized amount of fluoride toothpaste to help strengthen the tooth enamel and protect against cavities.
  4. Brush Properly: Angle the brush at 45 degrees to clean around the wires and brackets. Brush each tooth individually, spending about 10 seconds per tooth. Be sure to clean all surfaces of the teeth and braces, including the fronts, sides, and chewing surfaces, as well as the gums.
  5. Rinse Again: After brushing, rinse thoroughly with water to remove any dislodged particles and toothpaste residue.

Flossing with Braces: Navigating the Wires

Flossing with braces can be challenging, but it’s an essential step to remove plaque and food particles that a toothbrush can’t reach.

  1. Use the Right Tools: Wax-coated floss or a floss threader can make navigating floss through braces easier, reducing the risk of snapping the floss on the brackets or wires.
  2. Thread Carefully: If using a floss threader, thread a segment of floss through the eye of the threader. Then, use the threader to guide the floss behind the wire. Gently move the floss up and down the sides of each tooth and under the gums, being careful not to snap the floss into the gums forcefully.
  3. Consider a Water Flosser: For those who find traditional flossing too cumbersome, a water flosser can be an effective alternative. It uses a stream of pulsating water to remove plaque and food particles around the braces and between the teeth.

Additional Tips for Braces Care

  • Avoid Sticky and Hard Foods: These can damage your braces or get stuck and be difficult to remove.
  • Use an Antiseptic Mouthwash: This can help reduce inflammation of the gums and rinse away particles that brushing and flossing might miss.
  • Visit Your Dentist Regularly: Regular check-ups and cleanings are vital to maintaining oral health and ensuring your orthodontic treatment is progressing as planned.

Proper care of your braces is crucial for achieving the best results and maintaining the health of your teeth and gums. By incorporating these brushing and flossing techniques into your daily routine, you can ensure that your smile remains bright and healthy throughout your orthodontic journey.

Schedule a consultation

Start Your Journey to the Perfect Smile Today!

Book AppointmentCall Us at (502) 426-2744
Our Locations

3 Convenient Locations

Louisville (East End)

2015 Herr Lane, Louisville, KY
(502) 426-2744

View Map

La Grange

1201 KY-393, La Grange, KY
Across from Oldham County High School
(502) 241-1811

View Map


4819 Taylorsville Road, Taylorsville, KY
(502) 426-2744

View Map