Caring for Your Braces

Getting braces is exciting for anyone, whether you’re 70 or seven. Knowing what to expect can help you make your experience a success from day one.

We want you to be sure of what’s involved from self-care to maintenance so that you can enjoy your beautiful smile in as little time as necessary.

Oral Hygiene

Fixed orthodontic appliances mean there's more surface area for plaque to attach, so it’s crucial to re-vamp your brushing and flossing routine.

Here are a few things that you may want to consider:

  • Invest in an electric toothbrush, allowing you to clean more surface area in the same amount of time
  • Experiment with different types of floss threaders
  • Consider using a water flosser instead of traditional floss
  • Brush after each meal to prevent plaque accumulation around your appliances
  • Use a fluoride mouth rinse as instructed
  • The mouth rinse is not a substitution for brushing
  • Purchase a proxy brush to brush between brackets

Patients should clean around and between their brackets, as well as under the wires. Otherwise, plaque accumulation can start to etch away at the tooth enamel, leaving permanent white circles visible on the teeth once their braces come off.

Stay Away from These Foods

Avoid sticky, hard or crunchy foods, because these can cause brackets to break off of your teeth. Consider chopping foods into small pieces or steaming produce to make it gentler on your braces.

Also stay away from whole apples, nuts, and candies like caramel or taffy. Don't chew ice, but you can have it in your drinks.

With Invisalign treatment, there are no diet restrictions, although the aligners will need to be taken out when eating or drinking a sugary drink.

Fluoride Supplements

If you have a history of frequent cavities, Dr. Clauss or your family dentist may recommend adding a prescription strength fluoride gel to your daily hygiene routine.

This supplement can help to remineralize areas around your brackets so that you’re not left with decalcified areas on your teeth after your braces come off.

Orthodontic Emergencies

We do our best to equip you with the information you need to make sure orthodontic emergencies don't occur. But if a true orthodontic emergency should happen, our office has a 24-hour answering service available for you to reach us.

On the day that you first get your braces, we’ll review common problems (like broken brackets or wires) so that you can be ready and confident.

Follow Up Appointments

In order for braces to straighten your teeth, Dr. Clauss will need to adjust them every 6-8 weeks. Keeping these appointments is an important part of completing your treatment within the specified timeframe.

We ask that when at all possible, you contact us within at least 24 hours should you need to cancel or reschedule. This lets us accommodate the unique scheduling needs of other families and people like you.