No one likes to wear braces. They are painful and turn cleaning your teeth and eating into complicated art forms. But to ensure that the braces do their job effectively (and in as little time as possible), it is important to maintain proper habits for your teeth and the braces.

Cleaning Habits

Brushing your teeth twice a day stops plaque build-up and, even though you’re less inclined now, continuing to floss once a day reduces your risk for heart disease. If plague remains around the brackets of your braces, it turns into acid with the food you eat and creates cavities.

To help with flossing, you can use a floss threader to get the floss between your teeth since the brace wires are blocking your access. Of course, this adds time to your routine, but it is worth a straight smile in the end.

Switching to a different toothpaste is easy. Right now, there are many toothpastes available that are for teeth whitening, enamel strengthening and tooth sensitivity. There are also prescription-strength fluoride toothpastes for cavity prevention.

Adding a mouth rinse to your routine after you’ve flossed and brushed your teeth will keep your gums healthy. Gums can become more inflamed because they’re not used to the metalwork in your mouth and because of the plague build-up around the brackets.

Food Habits

Avoiding certain foods will save you a lot of trouble while you wear your braces. Some food habits will be easy to change while others will have to be completely stopped. Some modifications can include switching from whole carrots to shredded carrots and using a fork to pry the kernels off a corn cob. To protect your braces, use a knife and fork to eat everything. Other habits like chewing bubble gum and gnawing at pencils will have to be avoided to prevent damages to the braces.

Drinking lots of water is a great way to clean your mouth after having eaten or drunk anything sugary. Milk is also good to drink when wearing braces. It’s the acidic drinks you should avoid to prevent decalcification. If you do drink soft drinks, have them with food and drink them with a straw.

By continuing your regular habits with some modifications, you’ll get the most out of your braces with a beautiful and healthy smile for the rest of your life.

If you have any questions or concerns, feel free to book an appointment today by contacting Dr. Mercedes Bedi and Dr. Sabrina Bedi at King Town Dental.