Life With Braces
Your treatment at Carlson Orthodontics may only take half the time it would take at other orthodontic practices, but there are still a few things you should know about wearing braces. For the most part, wearing braces won’t change your daily life, but here are some helpful guidelines to help you make your time in braces the best it can be.
Use a toothbrush with soft bristles and a small strip of fluoride toothpaste. When you brush your teeth, move the brush in small circular motions to reach food particles that may be under your gum line and on your brackets and wires. Hold the toothbrush at an angle and brush slowly and carefully, including between teeth, on the surface of each tooth and around each bracket and wire. It will take you several minutes to thoroughly brush your teeth. Brush your teeth four times daily to avoid the accumulation of food particles and plaque:
- In the morning after breakfast
- After lunch or right after school
- After dinner
- At bedtime
Brushing the brackets and wires can cause your toothbrush to wear more quickly than before braces. If you notice the bristles starting to bend or fray, replace your toothbrush with a new one. Do not swallow any toothpaste as you brush, and rinse your mouth thoroughly with water after you finish brushing. It is important to carefully floss and brush daily for optimal oral hygiene.
It is very important to floss between your teeth every day. A floss threader with a stiff end will help you push the floss under your archwire. Floss at night to make sure your teeth are squeaky clean before you go to bed. When you first begin flossing, your gums may bleed a little. If the bleeding does not go away after the first few times, let a staff member know at your next appointment.
What to Eat:
For the most part, you’ll be able to eat many of the same foods you’ve eaten before. The general rule is to avoid things that are hard, sticky, gummy or chewy, to prevent breaking the bond that holds the brackets on the teeth. Click HERE for a more detailed list that you can print.