How to look after your braces during orthodontic treatment

Orthodontic TreatmentSome people worry about their dental hygiene suffering during treatment with braces. However, it’s not actually difficult to clean around braces effectively, which will minimise the chances of any problems developing.

Capital Dental in Hampton offers a wide selection of orthodontic treatment options for adults. These include both fixed braces and clear, removable aligners, designed to treat a full spectrum of orthodontic issues – often in a far shorter timeframe than that of a traditional metal brace.

Once an orthodontic appliance has been prescribed, an appointment with a dental hygienist is necessary to learn how to clean both the teeth and the appliance for the duration of treatment. With fixed braces, it is vital to clean the teeth after every meal – although you should wait approximately an hour after eating to avoid brushing sugars or acids into the teeth.

Many hygienists will recommend the use of special equipment such as floss threaders or interdental brushes to help keep your teeth and braces scrupulously clean. It’s essential to remove all food particles from both between the teeth and beneath the brace wires, and with a bit of practice this is not difficult.

Removable aligners – sometimes called invisible braces – don’t require much modification of your oral hygiene technique, as long as it was efficient before you started your course of treatment. These aligners should be taken out for cleaning, as well as whenever you eat or drink. You simply need to brush and floss your teeth as normal at the same time as cleaning the appliance.

As well as ensuring you clean your teeth and appliance properly, you need to pay careful attention to what you eat during treatment, especially in the case of fixed braces.

Some foods can damage your brace. Sticky foods such as caramel and toffee must be avoided, as should hard and crunchy foods such as raw carrots, apples, and crusty bread.

Boiling vegetables such as carrots and parsnips can help to ensure you still manage to get your five a day during orthodontic treatment, whilst chopping apples and pears into small pieces will make them safer to eat.

Removable appliances don’t need such a high degree of caution because you take them out to eat. However, high-sugar food and drink should be avoided.