You or your child has now started orthodontic treatment, so what is next? Now, all you need to do is take the right steps at home to care for your smile. During your time with us here at Shirck Orthodontics, we give you the knowledge you need to catch problems before they arise and have a successful treatment. For a quick refresher, check out the tips below. If you have any additional questions or need to schedule a visit with our orthodontists, Dr. Jeff and Dr. Soo, in Pataskala, New Albany, Westerville, Newark or Powell, Ohio, please give us a call.
How To Brush and Floss Your Teeth
If you or your child has braces, expect more time brushing your teeth than normal — at least three times a day. Brush every surface of your teeth and around the orthodontic appliance. With flossing, things can get a bit tricky. Try using a Waterpik® to help remove plaque from your teeth. Be sure to floss every day.
For clear aligners, you can easily remove them and perform your oral hygiene as normal.
Foods You Can Eat
Whether you are wearing braces or aligners, any foods that are soft and easy to chew are the best to incorporate in your diet and protect your appliance. These include:
- Yogurt with low sugar intake
- Soup (get the stove or crockpot running)
- Mashed or soft potatoes
- Eggs made just the way you like
- Cooked fruit and vegetables
Foods To Avoid
For those with braces, we recommend staying away from chewy and sticky foods to help you avoid multiple trips to the orthodontist, saving you money in the long run. These include:
- Gum or caramels
- Popcorn — be careful with those kernels!
- Hard candies like peppermints and butterscotch
- Tough to cut meats
- Carrots, apples and corn on the cob unless you cut them up.
If you have aligners, you get more of a free pass compared to braces, but we still suggest limiting sticky and sugary treats to avoid staining.
Are you or your child feeling discomfort with an orthodontic appliance? That’s completely normal. To help soothe the soreness, try taking a pain reliever and applying a warm washcloth over your jaw. If you still experience major discomfort, please reach out to our office.