- KEEPING YOUR TREATMENT ON TRACK
- EATING WITH BRACES
- CARING FOR TEETH WITH BRACES
KEEP YOUR TREATMENT ON TRACK BY:
- Brushing and flossing regularly
- Following doctors’ instructions about elastics and appliances
- Using food guidelines
- Avoiding breakage to brackets and appliances
- Seeing your dentist regularly
EATING WITH BRACES
Some foods are capable of damaging your brackets and wires which could prolong treatment time. These foods, that when modified and with good oral hygiene, can be enjoyed while you are in braces.
HOW TO MODIFY YOUR FOOD
- Cut crunchy fruits and vegetables (carrots & apples) into small pieces
- Break crackers and chips into small pieces
- Cut corn off of the cob
- Cut ribs and chicken off of the bone
HOW TO ENJOY SWEETS
Immediately after eating sweet foods and drinks, brush your teeth or rinse your mouth with water. This reduces the possibility of tooth decay.
FOODS TO AVOID:
Hard, sticky and chewy foods are the most common causes of loose brackets and broken appliances. Remember to avoid biting/chewing on pens, pencils and sports mouthguards.
HARD, STICKY AND CHEWY FOOD
- Ice cubes
- Hard candy & cough drops e.g., Jolly Ranchers®, lollipops
- Hard pretzels
- Crusty bread e.g., hard edges of pizza
- Hard nuts e.g., almonds
- Thick tortilla chips
- Popcorn (hard kernels)
- Beef jerky
- Caramels, toffee & taffy e.g., Starburst®
FOOD/BEVERAGES THAT CAN STAIN O-RINGS
- Coffee & tea
- Yellow mustard
- Tomato sauce
- Cumin spice
- Curry spice
- Red pepper hot sauce
- Deep red or purple food and beverages e.g., grape juice
CARING FOR TEETH WITH BRACES
Use a soft bristled, small headed toothbrush with fluoride toothpaste.
Electric toothbrushes are recommended.
Brush for two minutes after every meal.
Brush all tooth surfaces with small circular motions at a 45 degree angle.
Take special care to clean the areas around your braces, especially at the gum line.
Rinse thoroughly and check teeth and braces in the mirror.
Repeat brushing if necessary.
Using flossers, gently slide the floss between all teeth using a back and forth motion.
Floss the side of each tooth beneath the gum line to remove plaque and food particles.
Water flossers and Water-Piks® are helpful. Proxy brushes are good for those hard to reach areas.
If a wire protrudes, cover it with wax or a small piece of *sugarfree gum.
WHEN TO CALL
If a wire is poking or something comes loose, call us so that we can determine if a prompt repair is necessary.
*Chewing sugarfree gum stimulates saliva flow which can help keep teeth clean.