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Orthodontic Care: Maintaining Oral Health with Braces

Orthodontist doctor holding aligners and braces

Orthodontic treatments, such as braces, are a significant step towards achieving a perfect smile. However, maintaining oral health while wearing braces can be challenging. At Seaport Family Dental in Redwood City, CA, Dr. Steven Deng, DDS, provides invaluable guidance on how to care for your teeth and gums during orthodontic treatment.

Understanding the Importance of Oral Hygiene with Braces

With their wires and brackets, braces create nooks and crannies that can trap food particles and plaque, leading to an increased risk of tooth decay and gum disease. Effective oral hygiene is crucial to prevent these issues and ensure the success of your orthodontic treatment.

Effective Brushing Techniques

Brushing with braces requires more attention to detail:

  • Use a soft-bristled toothbrush: This helps in cleaning around braces without damaging them.
  • Brush after every meal: To dislodge food particles trapped in and around the braces.
  • Angled brushing: Angle your brush to clean above and below the brackets.
  • Time your brushing: Brush for at least two minutes to ensure thorough cleaning.

The Role of Flossing

Flossing with braces might seem daunting, but it’s essential:

  • Use waxed floss or a floss threader: These tools help in navigating the floss around the wires effectively.
  • Gentle motions: Be careful not to snap the floss into the gums.
  • Daily flossing: Essential for removing plaque and food particles between teeth and under wires.

Using Mouthwash for Additional Protection

An antimicrobial or fluoride mouthwash can be a helpful adjunct to brushing and flossing, helping to reduce plaque and remineralize enamel.

Diet Adjustments

Certain foods can damage braces or increase the risk of tooth decay:

  • Avoid hard, sticky, and chewy foods: These can damage braces and stick to the hardware.
  • Limit sugary and starchy foods: To reduce the risk of plaque buildup and tooth decay.

Regular Dental Checkups and Cleanings

Regular visits for Dental Cleaning & Consultation are crucial while wearing braces. These appointments allow for professional cleaning and monitoring of your orthodontic progress.

Managing Discomfort

Some discomfort is common after braces adjustments. Over-the-counter pain relievers and orthodontic wax can help alleviate soreness and irritation.

Orthodontic Emergencies

If you experience any issues with your braces, such as broken wires or brackets, contact Seaport Family Dental for advice or an emergency appointment. Visit their Dental Emergencies page for more information.

Post-Braces Care

Once your braces are removed, wearing a retainer as directed is essential to maintain your new smile. Continue with good oral hygiene practices to keep your teeth and gums healthy.

Ready for a Smile Makeover?

Orthodontic treatment is a journey that requires patience and consistent care. The reward of a beautiful, healthy smile is well worth the effort.

If you are considering braces or are currently undergoing orthodontic treatment, Dr. Steven Deng and his team at Seaport Family Dental in Redwood City, CA, are here to support you every step of the way. Call 650-365-0300 today to schedule a consultation or for more information on maintaining optimal oral health with braces.

Sources

  1. American Association of Orthodontists: Caring for Teeth with Braces
  2. Journal of Clinical Orthodontics: Oral Hygiene Best Practices for Patients with Braces
  3. International Journal of Dentistry: Orthodontic Care and Oral Health
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