How To Maintain Good Oral Health With Orthodontic Treatment

Pursuing orthodontic treatment is a big step, and understanding how to care for your teeth during this time properly is extremely important. Don’t know where to start? That’s okay! Our team at Mahlmann & Borders Orthodontics is here to guide you through your first steps and tips you want to keep in mind. We make it a priority to ensure each of our patients is confident in their care before we begin. Keep in mind these recommendations on maintaining good oral health with orthodontic care as you continue on your smile journey.

Maintaining Your Oral Health Matters

Being conscious of your oral health helps to prevent avoidable diseases and other issues you could encounter. The two major threats to your health are plaque and bacteria build-up. Relying on a routine of brushing your teeth, flossing, relying on us as a resource during check-ins, and choosing orthodontic-friendly foods helps you succeed in your smile journey and reach your goals. 

Throughout your orthodontic journey, we will ensure each of your teeth is in excellent condition so we don’t move anything around that might cause pain. 

Following A Tooth-Friendly Diet

As you care for your oral health, understanding which foods are unsafe and safe to eat with your appliance is vital. As your teeth begin to straighten out more, food will have fewer places to hide after meals and thus, your chances of cavities and tooth decay decrease. Our team will be able to point out specific areas of your teeth to make a point to clean if they are likely to trap leftovers.

Foods You Want To Stay Away From

Your appliance is not built to tolerate chewing pressure from particularly sticky or crunchy foods. Popcorn, nuts, caramels, gummies, and similar items are best to avoid while straightening your smile to prevent an emergency such as tooth decay, broken wires, etc.

Foods You Are Welcome To Eat

However, Dr. Mahlmann and Dr. Borders recommend choosing softer, healthier foods. Choices include pasta, soft veggies, chicken, eggs, and similar foods. While your options may feel limited initially, we hope you use this opportunity to try new items you may have previously avoided!

Attending Your Scheduled Appointments

We use your scheduled appointments to keep track of your progress and ensure everything is going according to plan. They are spaced out deliberately and count on your presence to make proper adjustments and check-ups on time. If you are unable to attend an appointment and adjustments are needed, your treatment may need alterations later depending on the work intended to be accomplished that day.

Our team recognizes that unforeseen situations may cause you to be late or need to reschedule entirely. If this is the case, we ask that you contact our office as soon as you can so we can work to find a new time for you to come in. Mahlmann & Borders Orthodontics, our goal is to be as flexible as we can with your schedule without your care plan suffering.

How To Maintain Good Oral Health With Orthodontic Treatment

Always Brush Your Teeth

Another component of maintaining oral health is brushing your teeth twice daily. Doing so is especially important when wearing undergoing orthodontic treatment. Cleaning your teeth after each meal is essential to rid your mouth of excess food particles and to keep them safe from dangers like bacteria and plaque. 

Selecting The Proper Instruments

Using orthodontic-recommended tools to brush teeth can help make the process more efficient. Choosing a soft-bristled toothbrush keeps your gums and appliance safe from scratches or similar inconveniences. You can effectively remove plaque, bacteria, small food particles, or anything else bad lingering. It is also less likely to damage your enamel over time.

Fluoride toothpaste is a great option when it comes to selecting what gel you can brush your teeth with. Fluoride can give you extra protection against cavities, strengthen your tooth enamel, and prevent white spots. Cleaning each surface of your teeth allows you to proactively protect your oral health.

How To Properly Clean Your Teeth

Begin by placing your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle at the gum line and moving it in a circular motion over each tooth’s surface. Be sure to clean above and below the appliance in addition to the appliance itself. Continue to do so for at least five minutes, and don’t forget to brush your tongue at the finish.

If you wear a fixed appliance such as metal or clear ceramic braces, you may go through toothbrushes more quickly than you are used to. Our team recommends switching out your toothbrush as soon as you notice the bristles starting to split apart so your teeth get adequately cleaned each time. 

Properly Flossing Your Teeth

Whether you have a fixed or a removable appliance, tiny pieces of food can lodge themselves in tight and sometimes hidden spaces, allowing them the chance to accumulate bacteria. While you may need to brush more than a few times daily, you don’t have to worry about flossing as often. Our team recommends doing so at least once a day, usually at night, to rid your mouth of any stubborn food particles before bed.

If you have wires preventing you from reaching the bottom of your tooth with a regular piece of floss, we will provide you with special floss threaders that you can use to reach under any wires and get to every corner necessary to clean your teeth.

How To Maintain Good Oral Health With Orthodontic Treatment

Keep Your Teeth Healthy and Shiny!

Mahlmann & Borders Orthodontics is a proud orthodontic treatment provider for the Richmond area. We ensure our patients are happy with their care throughout their time with us and are pleased to answer all your questions or concerns. You can make straightening your smile a reality with us by giving us a call to schedule your free consultation today!