Wearing braces can feel like a never-ending process. Depending on the initial alignment of your teeth and the goals you’re aiming to achieve by the end of treatment, you may just feel like you’ve been wearing them forever. Or, you may be new to braces; and looking for ways to optimise their effectiveness over time.
Either way, there are certain do’s and don’ts that you need to know and abide by while you’re wearing braces. Following these golden rules of brace wearing will ensure your teeth remain healthy throughout treatment, while also allowing you to manage the day-to-day routines involved.
For tailored guidance on managing your dental care, do speak to your own dentist. In the meantime, read our guide on what you should be doing while wearing braces – and what not to do.
While wearing braces or undergoing any orthodontic treatment, it is important to brush your teeth after you eat. This is because residues from foods can easily become lodged or trapped in the metalwork, resulting in the eventual breakdown of sugars within these foods that can contribute to unwanted issues like tooth decay and bad breath. It’s vital to remember to brush away any post-meal residue so your teeth stay healthy and clean.
Invest in a mini toothbrush and paste to take to work, and keep them in an easy-to-find pouch so you remember to brush every time you’re meant to. You can even set timers on your watch or phone if you are prone to forgetting!
Sticky foods are the number one culprit for a decline in oral health during brace and orthodontic treatments. You may feel you’ve brushed the stickiness away, however it’s almost impossible to get rid of all that hard-to-remove residue in one go. The resulting sugars and bacteria that can form can again, lead to dental health problems that are just easier to avoid in the first place.
Interdental brushing is equally as important as brushing your teeth while undergoing any sort of orthodontic treatment! It’s easily overlooked, however interdental brushing can remove plaque from those hard to reach areas that become even more inaccessible when you’re navigating wires or additional materials around the mouth.
This is a big no. Although we understand the excitement and temptation in moving your treatment along quickly, there’s no way you can safely or effectively adjust your braces yourself. You may feel there’s too much waiting time between your adjustment appointments, or might assume your dentist didn’t tighten your braces enough following one of these appointments. Rest assured that they know what they’re doing, and have undertaken years of training in order to get to this point!
Attempting to tighten your braces at home can lead to lasting damage. You could end up with snapped wires, requiring further treatment and appointments that you thought you’d be cutting down on by tightening them on your own. You could over-tighten the braces and cause pain, or even increase the misalignment of the teeth that you were trying to fix in the first place.
Dentists follow very specifically managed timelines and routines in determining how and when your braces should be adjusted. They’re not playing guessing games; they use the latest technology and scans to inform their careful planning. The re-alignment of bones isn’t something that you can manage yourself, and you’re paying for the privilege of having your dentist manage it in the first place! It’s best to leave it to the professionals.
As with any ongoing dental procedure, it’s vital that you stick to your appointments. Your dentist should work with you to schedule specifically tailored adjustment timelines that mean your orthodontic treatment remains firmly on track. Any missed appointments, and you run the risk of neglecting your dental health – while also prolonging the length of your brace-wearing era!
Finding a dentist local to you is one of the best things to do if you’re looking to make your experience wearing braces that little bit easier. As any form of braces will require occasional check-ups and adjustments, your local Manchester orthodontist is likely the best place to choose for treatment.
At Ringway Dental, our cosy high-end surgery is located close enough for patients living around Manchester, Cheadle, and Stockport. We offer a variety of orthodontic options, with the almost-invisible Invisalign, to the modern twist on the classics – with hidden ceramic braces.
After an initial appointment with our experts, we’ll be able to identify the ideal braces treatment that aligns with your dental goals. We then offer regular adjustments and appointments to ensure everything is shifting into place smoothly.