Brushing & Flossing
Keep Your Teeth and Gums Healthy with Good Hygiene Habits
Maintain the health of your teeth and gums by brushing your teeth after every meal and flossing at least once per day. Frequent brushing ensures any remaining bacteria is removed, which will prevent plaque from building up and causing cavities.
Before bed, we recommend using the timer and brushing your upper teeth for two minutes and your lower teeth for two minutes. It may seem like an eternity, but getting all the bacteria off of your teeth before bed is critical because your salivary flow decreases at night, which increases your chances of tooth and gum problems since there is not as much saliva to naturally clean off your teeth.
Brushing With Braces
1. Place the bristles of your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle to your gums
2. Make gentle brushing motions in a circular pattern
3. Brush the outer surface of your tooth enamel along with the areas that you use to chew
4. Use the upper portion of your toothbrush to clean the inner surfaces of each tooth
Flossing With Braces
- Use 18 inches of dental floss and wrap the ends around both index fingers
2. Gradually unravel the floss and thread it between your braces and archwire
3. Make a C-motion as you floss around your braces
4. Use the same motion in between each tooth
Repeat this technique for every area around your braces and each tooth.
We recommend avoiding certain foods that may make it harder to clean your teeth. Sugary, sticky, and chewy foods can get stuck in your brackets and wires and be difficult to remove.
If you are having trouble brushing or flossing efficiently, please talk to our orthodontist or a team member about other tools you can use to effectively clean your teeth. These tools include a two-minute timer, which helps you brush your teeth for the appropriate amount of time, and a floss threader, which makes it easier to work the floss around the brackets and wires of your braces.