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Patients in orthodontic treatment need to be dedicated to maintaining good oral hygiene. Braces trap food very easily, contributing to plaque formation. Carefully and thoroughly removing plaque from your teeth and gums will help to prevent the development of gum disease, dental decay, and bad breath and will ensure that the surfaces of your teeth underneath your braces will be healthy and strong when your braces are removed.

Brushing

Brush your teeth after every meal. If you cannot brush right away, rinse well with water.

Brushing Step 1

Step 1

Using a dry brush (soft bristles only) with a small amount of toothpaste, place bristles where the gums and teeth meet.

Brushing Step 2

Step 2

For 10 seconds on each tooth, use circular, vibrating motions around the gum lines.

Brushing Step 3

Step 3

Every tooth of both the upper and lower arches should be brushed slowly.

Brushing Step 4

Step 4

Brush the lower teeth from gum line up and upper teeth from the gum line down. Don’t forget to brush the roof of your mouth and your tongue, too!

Flossing

Floss twice daily to remove plaque that your toothbrush misses.

Flossing Step 1
   

Step 1

Carefully thread unwaxed floss between braces and wires. You may find a floss threader helpful.

Flossing Step 2

Step 2

Carefully move the floss up and down the sides of each tooth to clean the surfaces untouched by tooth brushing.

Flossing Step 3

Step 3

Carefully floss around the gum areas.