This is a topic very close to me. When I was 14, I finally got my braces off! Unfortunately, due to my lack of oral hygiene and diet, I had developed generalized decay in between my teeth that led to having a lot of fillings, crowns, root canals and eventual extractions. Don’t make the same mistake I did!

Here are some tips for great tooth care while in braces:

  • Rinsing & Brushing – 3-4 times a day rinse your mouth with water to loosen food that might be caught in the braces, then brush thoroughly. You can expect to brush more often with braces as food easily becomes lodged in and behind them, creating potential pockets of decay.
  • Flossing – With braces flossing can be difficult but it is essential to do at least once a day. Floss picks for braces or a WaterPik can make the task less challenging. You can even watch a YouTube video to make sure you are doing it right.
  • Regular Cleanings – See your dentist every 6 months, especially when you have braces. They can clean in and around your braces. They will also point out trouble spots and offer tips help you have your best chance at keeping decay away while those braces are on your teeth.
  • Dental Hygiene Away from Home – Take a travel toothbrush and toothpaste to school for an after lunch brush up. Ensure you remember good dental care while traveling or when you are out of your standard routine.

Quality cleaning and good diet can make all the difference on how your teeth look after braces. There is nothing sadder in the world of braces then spending a year or two in braces only to have your beautiful new smile marred by decay. Take good care of your teeth and the day you finally get your braces off can truly be a day to celebrate!

Dr. Poonam Shah