Orthodontists care about more than just helping you get straight teeth. We want to make sure your smile stays healthy too. In fact, getting orthodontic treatment with braces or Invisalign is a great way to make your teeth healthier overall. That being said, it can be a bit tricky to stay on top of proper cleaning while you have braces or Invisalign, particularly when it comes to flossing. However, your teeth are more vulnerable to plaque buildup and tooth decay while you have braces, making it even more important to stay on top of flossing regularly. Here’s how to make flossing easier during your orthodontic treatment.
Use a Floss Threader
If you have braces, the archwire will, unfortunately, get in the way of flossing normally. Because of this, you’ll need to thread the floss under the wires so you can get all the way down to your gums when you floss. To make this easier, you can use a floss threader. This simple device allows you to attach the floss to a more rigid base that easily slips under the wire, speeding up the process.
Use Wax Floss
While the type of floss you use typically won’t affect your results too much when you don’t have braces, non-wax floss can catch on your brackets and wires fairly easily. This can cause unpleasant tugging that can damage your braces or leave pieces of floss behind. To avoid this problem, use wax floss. This type of floss is just as effective at cleaning between your teeth but doesn’t fray as non-wax floss can.
Use Floss Picks
While this won’t really help you if you have braces, this clever alternative to traditional floss can speed up the flossing process if you have Invisalign clear aligners. Plus, you may just decide to switch to floss picks even after your treatment is over. Floss picks feature a plastic handle with a single strand of floss at the end, allowing you to easily start flossing your teeth instead of having to deal with the annoying process of wrapping the floss around your fingers. Just be sure to take your time when flossing this way.
Supplement Your Cleaning with a Water Flosser
Water flossers are handy devices that make it easy to clean in between your teeth. This device uses a precise nozzle and hose to shoot out pressurized water. Choose your setting and simply move the nozzle along your teeth to clean out your gum line and in between your teeth. A similar device to this is called an air flosser. The difference is in addition to pressurized water, this device shoots out a stream of air. When using an air flosser, only activate it when the nozzle is aimed in between your teeth. By adding one of these devices to your flossing routine, you can make sure your teeth are extra clean.
To learn more about cleaning your teeth during orthodontic treatment, contact Milnor Orthodontics today.