Braces on. What next?
Congratulations on beginning your journey to a healthy and beautiful smile! This journey is different for everyone. The estimated treatment duration for an average braces patient ranges from 18 months to 3 years. Here are some pointers for fuss-free treatment and good results.
Your braces needs to be adjusted every 4-8 weeks (this may vary, please ask your orthodontist).If you do not keep up with your orthodontic appointments, you may develop decay and gum disease and this will lead to prolonged treatment and other possible problems.
Keep everything clean.
Keep your teeth, gums and braces clean by brushing at least twice a day. Be extra careful about brushing underneath the wire and gum margins.
How do I brush?
- Use an interdental brush to clean underneath the braces wire, use a gentle up and down motion rubbing against the tooth surfaces
- Use a soft bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste. Brush the gum portion above the braces, in a gentle circular motion, angle the brush at a 45° angle towards the gum, pay attention to the braces with hooks as these tend to trap more plaque
- Hold your toothbrush at a 45° angle towards the braces when brushing the braces surface of the teeth.
- Brush the other parts of your teeth as you would normally
How do I floss?
- Take a long piece of floss (about 20cm) and thread it through a floss threader
- Take the pointed end of the floss threader and pull it under the wire of your braces
- Remove the floss threader once the floss has been pulled under the wire of your braces
- Loop both ends of the floss around your fingers and floss through the contacts of your teeth and under the gum
- Pull the floss out from the side and begin the same steps on the next pair of teeth.
What foods should I avoid?
- Hard foods as this will break or damage the braces. Fresh vegetables or crunchy fruits/breads need to be chopped into small pieces and chewed gently using your back teeth.
- Sugary drinks/food cause damage to your teeth. You can get white or brown spots on your teeth also known as decalcification marks which cannot be removed and may lead to decay. Try and keep this to a minimum; particularly in-between meals.
A beautiful smile is also a healthy one!
While it is important to visit your orthodontist for your braces adjustments. Do not forget to visit your general dentist every 6 months for your routine check up and cleaning appointment.
We are here to help so do let us know if you have any further queries.
Coping with your braces
Soft wax will be given to be covered over the bracket or wire in the event that the abrasion causes ulceration of the surrounding soft tissues. Teeth may move out of line very quickly if the braces are broken. If this happens please contact your orthodontist for advice. It is in your best interest to avoid all breakages to ensure a prompt and good finish to your treatment.