The Importance of Great Oral Hygiene During Orthodontic Treatment
Having good oral hygiene is important for everyone, but it’s especially vital while undergoing orthodontic treatment. While braces or clear aligners are correcting your misaligned teeth, they can also trap food particles more easily. This means cleaning your teeth is a bit harder than usual. However, just because you’re having orthodontic treatment doesn’t mean you can’t have great oral hygiene still. It’ll just take a bit more work and more time!
Plaque and Oral Health
Plaque is the main enemy of oral health. When food becomes trapped near the tooth surface, plaque can start to form. Plaque is described as a thin coating of organic debris and microorganism that have harmful bacteria. When you wear braces or other appliances as part of your orthodontic treatment, plaque becomes harder to remove. The bacteria inside plaque will start to digest sugar in various foods, which will then product acids that can irritate gums and erode teeth. This can in turn cause a number of oral problems, such as cavities, gum disease, white spots on teeth and bad breath. When you’re undergoing orthodontic treatment, it’s important to keep plaque under control. This is the most effective way to maintain healthy, strong gums and teeth despite wearing appliances. This is done via daily maintenance, diet and regular professional care!
Have A Healthy Diet
Your diet can increase the risk of tooth decay. If you eat too much sugar, such as sweets, soda and sugar rich foods, you risk developing more plaque. Plus, many sweets can easily become stuck in your appliances, like gum, caramels and toffee. Basically, any food that’s really hard or sticky can damage appliances like your brace. You should avoid these sorts of foods at all costs!. keep eating other hard and healthy foods like apples and carrots, but just make sure that you cut them first.
Daily Maintenance Is Vital
Brushing your teeth and regular flossing is important no matter what, but even more so during orthodontic treatment. But it can be harder to clean your teeth right around wires and bracket, so you’ll need to change how you clean them. Invest in a soft-bristle toothbrush or a bi-level option that has longer bristles on the edges, with shorter ones in the middle. These are great for plaque removal regardless if you have braces or not. If you use an electric toothbrush, make sure it’s on a moderate setting. Always floss at least once a day even though it can be hard with braces. If that’s the case, invest in floss threaders that make it easier to get in between the appliances. If you wear a retainer, brush it daily as you would your teeth.
Don’t Forget Professional Care
Make sure that you still get professional care and see a dentist regularly in addition to your orthodontist. The dentist will make sure that your teeth are healthy and provide you with routine cleanings and any preventative care you might need. So make sure that you practice great oral hygiene. Your smile will thank you after your orthodontic treatment is done. You’ll be able to smile with pride and will have amazing results for years to come.
Some of our Recommended Oral Hygiene Products*.
*Othman Orthodontics is not affiliated nor endorses any of these products. Patients can use any of these products or similar products in the market to achieve great oral hygiene.