Braces can bring along a mixed bag of emotions. You can feel excited that you are correcting something wrong with your teeth, nervous about the way they look, and often worried that the hardware is going to make it more likely that you will end up with cavities. Braces certainly do a lot of good, but if you don’t take proper care of your teeth while you have them, they could end up leaving you with some collateral damage. Below are four tips to avoid cavities while wearing your braces.
Place the brush at a 45 degree angle against your gums so that you cover the whole tooth while brushing, and brush gently in the area in between your wire and the tooth. Make sure to use a softer toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste for the best possible results.
Braces are notorious for keeping food stuck in your teeth after you eat. This is why it is incredibly important to brush and floss your teeth after every meal you eat while you have your braces on. This may seem irritating, but you will be very happy you did all this once you have your braces off.
Having braces, unfortunately, means temporarily altering your diet to exclude foods that are not “braces-safe.” Anything that would be difficult to remove during brushing, including nuts and candy, and anything hard or tough-skinned, such as apples, carrots, or corn on the cob, is a no-go. It’s also a good idea to stay away from anything crunchy, such as chips, or popcorn. The best foods are those which are the least hard on your enamel, such as milk, bananas, mangoes, chicken, fish, etc. In addition hard items can dislodge the brackets from the teeth and or distort the wires.
While you have your braces on, your orthodontist is going to want to see you periodically to make sure that your braces are doing what they are supposed to be doing. Do not skip out on these checkups. The best way to avoid any cavities while wearing your braces is to keep up with your orthodontist appointments so that he or she can monitor your progress and bring any dental issues to your attention.
Braces are not something that we enjoy having, but they are often a necessary inconvenience. It is sometimes hard to convince young children and teenagers that braces are a good idea because they are worried not only about how they will look, but about the care and maintenance that comes along with them. Trust your orthodontist: a little extra effort is a lot better than a mouth full of cavities.