Braces can be a pain to wash, especially since you can’t take them off whenever you want to. Because they’re made of wires, braces are a magnet for pesky food particles and other unmentionables. As a result, some people with braces might find a gross line of film and decay once their braces come off, especially if they haven’t kept up with their oral hygiene. But how do you clean your braces effectively?
Well, it depends on your budget. You could say there are two options: there’s the cheap yet slightly inconvenient route, and there’s the pricey but easy route. The first option involves slogging with good oral hygiene, while the other makes use of fancy gadgets. Both get the job done.
Regardless of what option you choose, however, you might be wondering where’s the best place to start. Fortunately, you can clean your braces effectively with this handy guide:
If you’re looking for something quick and pricey, get the right gear
We’re lucky to be living in an era of technological innovation. And nothing proves the point further than today’s most popular dental gadgets.
While they may come at a hefty price, those with the extra money to spend might find it worth the investment. And for those with disabilities—physical or otherwise—they not only help you with your brace problems but also enhance your overall oral hygiene routine.
There are many options in the market now, but here are some suggestions:
- Electric toothbrush. Once you get braces, your oral care routine becomes noticeably longer. There are more nooks and crannies to tend to. And, sometimes, you might get some toothbrush bristles stuck within the wires, let alone, have trouble maneuvering those brittles to the right spots. Fortunately, with an electric toothbrush, this doesn’t have to be the case. Just put your electric toothbrush on its lowest setting, and let it do the work for you.
- Water flosser. While wearing braces, you might find yourself on the lookout for something that’s both convenient yet effective. Fortunately, the water flosser is just that. Unlike typical floss, you’re less likely to add more to what’s stuck between your wires with a water flosser. And because you can adjust the jet stream, reaching those tight crevices become more accessible (and more effective).
If you’re looking for something slow but cheap, persistence is key
Of course, not everyone has the deep pockets needed to purchase fancy equipment (a vast majority, actually.) But while the cheap-and-traditional route might not be as convenient, it does pay off equally well. Once you get past the hard work of it, that is.
How, then, could you clean your braces effectively with good oral hygiene? Try these out:
- Thoroughly brush your teeth with a thin-bristled toothbrush. You can never go wrong with soft, thin bristles, especially if you have braces. They’re not only soft enough to steer clear of brace damage but narrow enough to get into those hard-to-reach spots. Brush both your wires and teeth for maximum effectiveness.
- Waxed dental floss is your best friend. Yes, you’ll still need to floss—unless you want that icky bacterial build-up, that is. In this case, opt for waxed dental floss to prevent it from snagging on the wires. Thread them under the wires before you floss between your teeth, and you should be good to go.
- Mouthwash makes it easier. Getting braces is a totally valid reason for getting yourself some mouthwash. Its liquid state slides perfectly through those crannies. Look for a therapeutic one that claims to help reduce plaque, so you don’t have too much to work with when you floss.
What Should You Eat While Wearing Braces?
You might be sighing in defeat and thinking to say goodbye to all yummy treats in the world. Fret not as there is a heap of delicious meals you can enjoy that are friendly to your braces:
- Eggs particularly scrambled eggs which are soft and mushy, making them easy to bite and require minimal chewing. Eggs also contain minerals and vitamins like vitamin D that enables the proper absorption of calcium. They are also a good supply of protein.
- Smoothies are gentle on the braces, and with the right ingredients, are healthy and loaded with vitamins and antioxidants. Start your day with a fruit and vegetable smoothie to energize your day.
- Oats and grains are alternative to crunchy cereals. Aside from being braces-friendly, oats can lower blood cholesterol with regular consumption.
- Soups are easy to consume. With the wide range of flavors and ingredients, there’s a soup for everyone out there. Thicker stews are an alternative if you don’t like the lightness of most soups.
Other Bites to Eat:
- Mashed potatoes and meatloaf make the best combination for a filling dinner that is not hard on the teeth.
- Noodles are also easy to bite. You can also test your creativity and cooking skills by coming up with noodle recipes. Be cautious of the “no” foods when mixing your noodles, okay?
- Dairy like yogurt and soft cheese are excellent sources of calcium and stimulate the saliva.
- Steamed vegetables are the best preparation for vegetables while wearing braces. Chewing on raw vegetables may damage the braces as they are hard. Even munching on hard, raw veggies (or fruits) has been known to dislodge a loose tooth!
- Low-sugar ice cream is an alternative to caramel, taffy, and hard candies for dessert. You can also make your own ice cream by smoothing fruits, adding yogurt, and freezing them. The addition of refined sugar is not necessary as fructose is typically sweet enough as is.
There are plenty of recipes and foods you can make and eat that are good for oral health. You must remember the foods to avoid while you are wearing braces to ensure that no damage will be done to your teeth and braces.