Although we don’t provide traditional metal braces for our patients, we often see patients who have them, and we notice that sometimes they struggle to keep them clean. If you wear metal braces, read on to learn some helpful, “caring” tips:
- Brush. Brushing your teeth twice a day is essential if you wear braces. Brushing after every meal helps prevent stains and removes trapped food. If you can’t brush after eating, rinse your mouth with water and brush as soon as possible. Use a fluoride toothpaste and a brush with soft bristles.
- Floss. Wearing braces means you’ll have to work much harder to keep your mouth clean and to make sure your smile isn’t showing bits of the salad you had for lunch. A “floss threader” can get in between and underneath the wires on your braces.
- Be Prepared. It’s easy to maintain good habits at home, but more difficult when you are at work, school or socializing. Keep a travel-size toothbrush, toothpaste, wax, chap stick, and floss in your briefcase, purse, backpack, locker, or glove box.
- Keep Your Appointments. Your orthodontist can help you take care of your braces and fix problems if bands loosen or wires pop out of place. Don’t skip your regular appointments and call your orthodontist if there is a problem.
- Be extra careful about what you eat and drink.
You can say “yes” to:
- Soft cheeses, yogurt, milk, and eggs
- Chicken, deli meat, and seafood without bones
- Mashed potatoes, beans, and steamed vegetables
- Bananas, berries, applesauce, and smoothies
- Bread, pasta, pancakes, muffins without nuts, soft tortillas, and biscuits
But say “no” to:
- Chewy foods like bagels, steak, jerky, and pork
- Hard foods like nuts, chips, and raw carrots
- Soda, dried fruits, caramels, popcorn and gum
- Sticky and sugary foods
Whether you wear braces or not, a thorough dental exam and cleaning is always a good idea. We invite you to call to schedule an appointment, today.