Orthodontic treatment has definitely helped many people improve their smiles and make a dramatic improvement in their overall confidence levels, yet it is known to increase the risk of gingivitis, especially when the treatment involves the use of fixed appliances like braces.
Braces - small metal or plastic brackets attached to the teeth with the help of metal bands - cover much of the tooth surface area, and because of this, cleaning teeth becomes a challenging task leading to gingivitis. However, there are ways you can prevent gingivitis during orthodontic treatment. Here’s how:
- Brush Your Teeth The Right Way
While wearing braces, the traditional technique of up and down brushing may put you at a risk of loosening the brackets. The right way to brush is to use a circular motion with your brush placed at a 45-degree angle against your gum. It’s important that you brush each tooth for at least 10 seconds allowing the bristles to reach in the spaces between the tooth and the wire, cleaning the inside as well as the outside of each tooth.
- Switch To A Soft Toothbrush
During orthodontic treatment, your gum tissues and tooth enamel are already vulnerable to infections. If you are using a hard-bristled toothbrush, it can make matters worse for you. It can cause the gums to recede and possibly damage the appliance as well. Make the switch to a soft compact toothbrush. Its soft bristles can protect your fragile teeth and gums while removing food particles and plaque.
- Include Interdental Brushes And Floss Threaders In Your Teeth-Cleaning Process
If you feel brushing isn’t enough to protect you from tooth decay, you may want to use an interdental brush to remove food particles from areas where the brush cannot reach. An interdental brush is usually recommended by the orthodontist to clean the areas where infections are bound to begin. Cleaning with an interdental brush can be done better when it’s accompanied with a floss threader, which can easily floss between teeth.
- Avoid Foods That Stain Your Teeth
The common foods and drinks that are known to stain your teeth/ceramic braces are mustard, tomatoes, coffee, and red wine so stay away from them while on orthodontic treatment.
- Stay Hydrated At All Times
With braces on, you may experience a feeling of dryness in your mouth. That’s a common side effect of wearing braces. This is because braces tend to consume a lot of space in your mouth and that hampers the saliva production leading to a dry mouth. A dry mouth is an ideal situation for gingivitis to occur. Therefore, it is crucial that you stay hydrated at all times during your orthodontic treatment. There are several products available in the market that can help in combating mouth dryness and also stimulating saliva production.
During orthodontic treatment, soreness and swelling of the gums are inevitable. However, if you notice symptoms of gingivitis, it is best to consult an orthodontist and follow a proper oral care regime.
Emily Taylor found the perfect fit for herself as the Online Marketing Manager at Thurman Orthodontics in Fresno CA as she believes that a great smile does more than just make a person look great – it makes them feel great as well. The power of a smile has always been a mystery to Emily and she loves researching and writing about it. She loves to write about everything to do with a healthy bite and a beautiful smile - whether it is ways to achieve it or the importance of it in the various aspects of life. What brings a big smile to Emily’s face is her family and surfing. She also likes to bake - her children and co-workers call her the cookie fairy!