HOW DO I FLOSS WITH BRACES?

 

If you wear braces, you may be finding the art of dental hygiene a little tricky to grasp. With our top orthodontics advice and tips from our clinic right here in Guilford, we can talk you through the ways in which you can maintain great dental hygiene. 

 

Flossing is a vital part of your dental routine and should be implemented at a young age. Any dentist will tell you this. However when you wear braces, the spaces in between can collect food and bacteria which can create a number of issues short term and long term.  Whilst it can be a little bit of a challenge, it is certainly mangable and once you know the techniques, you can continue your dental routine with ease.  You will want to floss regularly because flossing reaches areas of the mouth that standard brushing just can’t. Whilst brushing can remove plaque from the front and back of the teeth, they simply just can’t reach in between, and along the gum-line, which is where the plaque builds up. If you don’t break this bacteria down, it can lead to bad breath and also other issues, such as gum disease. If you have braces, the food debris has even more areas to get lodged, in between brackets and wires, and you may find that you notice this after eating. You are advised by The Academy of General Dentistry (AGD) to make a conscious effort to floss regularly. 

 

How To Get To Grips With Flossing

All orthodontics will advise you to floss at least three to four times a week, and also invest in a floss pick instrument. These are great for people with braces because they are tapered and can slot through the areas of the teeth and gum lines easier than traditional floss. They are available for both children and adults and are a preferred method of flossing. These floss picks will have a little handle for you to hook your finger through and you will be able to maneuver much easier. The wire is then threaded wherever you should choose and at our orthodontist in Guilford, we really highly recommend using one of these. 

 

Another little trick for flossing novices, is to use a technique that allows you to manipulate the dental floss between the teeth in a “C” shape. This allows you to reach all areas of the gum and gives you a good motion as you go. Keep the floss pulled taut so it is strong and firm. You may want to look at a Waterpik flosser also. This is a tool that pushes water through quickly and powerfully, a similar concept to those that you would find in a dental office. It can be great for people with braces as it can be a more stress free option and very effective.

 

I wear invisible braces, how do I manage? 

 

If you wear any type of invisible braces, you can still floss. Start with about 18 inches of floss and wind most of it around each middle finger, leaving an inch or two to work with. Hold it taut and slide it gently up and down, then curve the floss around the base of each tooth, making sure to go beneath the gum line. This is the traditional method of flossing that also works great for those with invisible braces. For more information please look at our orthodontist in Guildford for more effective tips. 

 

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