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How to Properly Brush Your Teeth With Braces

October 25, 2023
How to Properly Brush Your Teeth With Braces

Brushing your teeth with traditional braces can prove challenging. However, you can’t neglect this oral hygiene task simply because you’re undergoing orthodontic treatment.

Luckily, brushing with braces need not be as difficult as it may seem. The following guide will help you brush thoroughly despite braces complicating the process. For more information, discuss this topic with your orthodontist or dentist during your next appointment. Depending on the severity of a misalignment, you might even be a candidate for an alternative treatment method, such as clear aligners.

Effectively Brushing Your Teeth With Braces: What You Need to Know

If you have braces, brushing your teeth should involve the following steps:


Rinse your mouth out with water or mouthwash before brushing. Doing so is a simple but often surprisingly effective way to remove loose food particles. In fact, it’s wise to rinse your braces every time you eat, even if you’re not able to follow up with brushing at that moment.

Brush the Gum Line

Begin brushing with the gum line. Use a 45-degree angle, and don’t apply excessive pressure, as doing so can cause irritation. 

Brush the Brackets

Brushing when you have braces may take slightly longer than brushing without them. When you have braces, it’s important to thoroughly and carefully brush each bracket to ensure you’ve removed as much debris as possible.

Exercise care during this step! If you apply too much force or move too quickly from one bracket to another, you risk potentially damaging the wires or other such components of your braces.

Adjusting to this step of the brushing process may take some time. However, if you focus on thoroughly and carefully cleaning your brackets one by one, soon you’ll find the task comes as naturally to you as brushing always did.

Floss With a Waterpik

Flossing is a critical step in the oral hygiene process. By flossing, you remove particles and debris that your toothbrush may have been unable to reach. 

However, traditional dental floss could theoretically damage your braces. Instead, consider flossing with a waterpik.

As the name implies, this device uses a thin stream of water in place of dental floss. It’s an effective way to clean hard-to-reach spots without risk.

Additional Dental Hygiene Tips for Patients With Braces

Other ways you may optimize your dental and oral health when you have braces include:

  • Try to avoid eating sticky foods that could get caught in your braces. An orthodontist can provide you with more information about foods to avoid during treatment.
  • Wear a mouthguard to protect your braces if you play sports.
  • Brush both the top and bottom of your brackets for more ideal results.
  • Use a toothbrush with soft bristles, as harder bristles run the risk of damaging your braces.

Again, what’s most important is that you do not neglect brushing and flossing simply because properly doing so with braces may require making adjustments. If you’re having any trouble with these tasks, your orthodontist can answer your questions, helping you master the necessary techniques.

Learn More About Getting Braces in Delmar, NY

At Embrace Orthodontics, our goal is to ensure our patients feel thoroughly comfortable with their treatment and overall oral health when we equip them with braces. Find out what we can do for you by contacting us online today or calling us at 518-439-9339 to request an appointment.

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Embrace Orthodontics
500 Kenwood Avenue
Delmar, NY 12054
Tel: 518-439-9339 | Fax: 518-475-0011
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500 Kenwood Avenue Delmar, NY 12054
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