How to Brush Your Teeth and Floss with Braces

Regular toothbrushing and flossing are always important, but when you have braces, it's an especially big deal! Braces offer all kinds of nooks and crannies for food to get caught, which the "cavity bugs" love. (Can you tell we've taught this to lots of darling preschoolers over the years? : ) It's very important to brush and floss after every meal in order to keep your teeth and gums healthy throughout your orthodontic treatment. If you don't keep them clean, there's even a chance of permanent discoloration or damage to your teeth, so just don't risk it. Read the tips below—and then do them!

Also, do NOT think that because you're seeing Dr. Willes often, you can skip your visits to the dentist. Regular dental check-ups and teeth cleaning are essential for the best dental and orthodontic outcomes! (And we're happy to schedule a quick appointment to remove your wires before you go in for your teeth cleaning, and then see you again to replace them when you're done. Just call Carrie to set that up after you make your hygiene appointment.)

Brushing with Braces

Brush your teeth for two minutes after every meal with a soft-bristled, small-headed toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste. As an alternative, you can use a powered toothbrush to increase your brushing effectiveness. Brush the outside and inside surfaces of your teeth using small, gentle, circular motions while positioning the head of the toothbrush at a 45-degree angle to the gum line. Brush your teeth’s chewing surfaces and the inside surface of your front teeth using short, gentle, back-and-forth motions. Pay close attention to the areas around your brackets or other appliances.

brushing with braces

Flossing with Braces

Flossing after every meal will help keep your teeth and braces clean, which will also help keep your treatment time on track. To floss with braces, use a floss threader or special orthodontic floss to thread the floss behind each wire. Wrap the ends of the floss around your pointer fingers of both hands, leaving a few inches of taught floss between them. Gently slide the floss between each set of teeth using a back and forth motion. Floss the sides of each tooth beneath the gum line to remove plaque and food particles. Repeat this process until you’ve flossed all of your teeth. If you find that your floss is not removing all of the food particles between your teeth and around your braces, ask us about a water flosser!

flossing with braces

740 Oak Avenue, Suite A
Carlsbad, CA 92008
(760) 434-5031
8:00am to 5:00pm

8:00am to 5:00pm

8:00am to 5:00pm

8:00am to 5:00pm