Flossing may seem impossible when you have braces – all those wires getting in the way! It normally takes people with braces three times longer to floss, but we have some pointers to help speed things up. Our team loves to suggest techniques that take the hassle out of having braces! Keep reading for a list of tools that will help clean your teeth in half the time.
- Waxed floss: Unwaxed floss is made up of strands that catch on braces and get left behind in your mouth. Try waxed floss, instead; it glides easily between teeth and doesn’t tear so you don’t have to worry about floss residue.
- Floss threader: It’s hard to floss properly with braces blocking your teeth and gums. Using this tool is a lot like threading a needle: pull the floss through the threader, then use the threader to maneuver the floss behind your wires and between your teeth.
- Dental tape: If you have gum soreness you may find dental tape, or ribbon floss, more comfortable because it’s wider, spongier and gentler on gums.
- Orthodontic brush: Also called a “proxy brush,” these have v-shaped bristles to get between brackets and reach all the places you might be missing with a regular toothbrush.
- Water pick: Water picks can help flush out food and bacteria in hard-to-floss places. They’re convenient for getting rid of food debris between meals when you don’t have time to brush or floss. The water pressure also stimulates the gums to ease inflammation.
- Disclosing tablets: Here’s a fun way to find out if you’re brushing and flossing well enough! Plaque disclosing tablets are chewable and contain a dye that lights up plaque and food residue you might have missed while cleaning your teeth.
You shouldn’t have to struggle with flossing just because you have braces; braces are supposed to improve your oral health, not make it more difficult to maintain! If you pick up the right materials, your dental care routine will be quick and effective.