If you have been living with a crooked smile but have recently made the choice to undergo orthodontic treatment, you have made a wise decision. Braces are the most common means to straighten the teeth. By attaching metal wires and brackets to the teeth, your teeth will be moved into their correct positions. However, while braces are effective, they do create a certain challenge when it comes to caring for your teeth. You need to brush and floss properly while undergoing orthodontic treatment. But, when you have braces, flossing requires a different approach. As your orthodontist in Newark, OH, Dr. Shirck has the information you need to floss properly while straightening your teeth.
How to Floss with Braces
When wearing braces, food particles and plaque will become trapped around the braces, bands, and wires. If plaque and food are not removed daily, you increase the risk for developing cavities. To prevent cavity development, you need to floss your teeth each day.
Flossing with braces is going to be a bit different and take a while longer than flossing without braces. Expect to spend about 3 minutes each day flossing your teeth. To ensure you achieve the best benefits, choose a high-quality waxed floss that is supported with the ADA seal of approval. You do not want to use unwaxed floss because it tends to get caught in the braces, leading to shredding of the floss.
You are going to need to use about 18 inches of floss in order to floss the teeth comfortably. Carefully thread the floss under the main wire of the braces. Then, pass the floss in between two teeth. Form a “C” shape around the tooth and extend the floss up to the gum line.
You will then need to remove the floss. This time, re-thread the floss underneath the main wire and insert it between two teeth. Again, form a “C” shape around the tooth and slide the floss down to the crown of the tooth. You need to repeat this process for each tooth.
When flossing, be careful not to snap the floss onto the gum line. In addition, slide the floss gently so you do not hit the main wire of the braces too hard. If you hit the wire roughly, it may cause the wire to become loose or break.
If you are a parent of a young child undergoing treatment, you will probably have to help them floss each day until they develop the coordination to do it on their own.
Your Orthodontist for a Straight Smile
As your orthodontist in 43055, we work to ensure you have a healthy, beautiful smile after your treatment is finished. To ensure your smile looks its very best, you need to practice proper oral hygiene while undergoing orthodontic treatment. Brushing is not enough. You need to properly floss your teeth each day. It will be time well spent to invest in your new, beautifully straight smile once treatment is complete. If you have any questions, please contact our office.