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Caring for braces
You will be shown how to brush and floss when your braces are first fitted. The best way to ensure a clean and healthy smile is by brushing and flossing. The most important area to brush is between the braces and the gum. This area “traps” a lot of food, and plaque forms quickly. Orthodontic appliances do not cause cavities, but because of their presence, plaque and food particles are retained more readily. To avoid these problems while you are in orthodontic treatment, please take special care of your braces, teeth and gums to ensure you will achieve the best possible result.
Brushing your teeth will take a lot longer now that you have braces on. Any brush with soft bristles and a small head that is comfortable to hold is fine. Hold the toothbrush not on top of the braces, but on the gums, wriggling in small circles. You can then push the bristles of the brush under the wires from above and below the braces to remove food and more importantly, plaque from under the wires. This will require placing the brush in one spot, then pushing the bristles.
In addition to your normal toothbrush, an interdental or proxybrush may assist in cleaning underneath and around your wires and braces. During orthodontic treatment it is recommended that you brush your teeth for at least 5 to 8 minutes at a time and after every meal, approximately 3 times per day.
Extra protection for your teeth
While your braces are on, we recommend that you use a fluoride mouth rinse weekly. Fluoride is a mineral that can strengthen your teeth and make them more resistant to decay. Brush your teeth as normal, then after rinsing out all the toothpaste, take 5-10ml of Fluorocare in your mouth and swish vigorously for 30 seconds. Spit this out and then leave the residue sitting on your teeth for at least 30 minutes. It is best if this is done just before going to bed, then the fluoride will be working to strengthen your teeth all night.
Foods to avoid
you start wearing braces you should avoid the following foods: