Braces Care Is Simpler Than You Might Think

If you are about to visit the orthodontist to have braces put on your teeth, you are probably facing mixed emotions. You're excited to be taking a big step towards straighter teeth, but you're a little apprehensive about all the care your braces are going to require in the coming months. But here's the thing: caring for braces is simpler than you might think. If you follow the tips below, you'll soon adapt to these appliances and do a good job of taking care of them.

Keep your adjustment appointments.

Your orthodontist will want to see you every 6 to 8 weeks — depending on how quickly your teeth move — to tighten your braces. It is essential that you keep these appointments. Do not reschedule or put the appointments off unless there is an absolute emergency. If you wait too long between adjustments, it will take longer to straighten your teeth.

Floss daily.

People often focus on the importance of tooth brushing when wearing braces, and indeed, brushing is important. But flossing is essential, too, and if you fail to floss, you are very likely to end up with cavities between your teeth by the time you're done wearing braces. Using traditional floss can be tough when you have braces, so most orthodontists recommend purchasing a water flosser. It's worth the money, since it will save you from developing cavities.

Change your elastics often.

Your orthodontist will recommend putting elastics on certain braces brackets in order to redirect the movement of your teeth in the right direction. Make sure you not only wear these elastic bands as recommended, but also replace the elastics daily. The rubber bands can gather bacteria, especially if they start to develop little cracks and fissures. Replacing them daily will help keep bacterial levels down in your mouth.

Keep your wax handy.

Braces do rub on your cheeks and tongue from time to time. The secret to dealing with this is to nip it in the bud. Keep braces wax handy, and put a glob on your braces as soon as you start to feel any sort of discomfort. If you do this, you should never get serious rubs in your mouth.

By following the tips above, you can take better care of your braces and your mouth. Your orthodontist can give you additional advice and answer any questions that come up during your first week or two of treatment.