Patients undergoing orthodontic treatment will need to be extra attentive to their teeth brushing habits while their smile becomes straighter. Follow Dr. Kazmierski’s guidelines to ensure your teeth and gums look their best during treatment.
- Brush your teeth 3 times a day for 3 full minutes each time. Use the 3 minute sand timer to time yourself every time you brush. The last brushing of the day is the most important. Use your proxybrush and Phosflur (described below) after the last brushing of the day. If you are using the Sonicare toothbrush, brush for the full 2 minutes until the built in timer turns the toothbrush off.
- Hold your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle towards the braces when brushing the brace surface of the teeth. Brush both above and below the braces holding the brush at a 45-degree angle toward the brace. This cleans under the wires. Then brush at a 45-degree angle toward the gums. Spend equal amounts of time with all the teeth.
- Use moderate pressure when pushing the toothbrush against the tooth. Light pressure will result in the teeth, braces, and gums not being clean. Heavy pressure will damage your gums and cause excessive wear of the teeth. As in many things, moderate is the right amount.
- If the gums in a certain area bleed after brushing, brush that area more. Bleeding is a sign of infection. Sometimes patients avoid brushing bleeding areas while the correct action is to actually brush these areas more.
- Use your proxy-brush 1 time per day (at night after you have brushed your teeth)
- Use PHOS-FLUR fluoride rinse every night after brushing and using your proxy-brush. Take one cap full and swish it around your mouth for 1 minute then expectorate (spit out). DO NOT DRINK THE PHOS-FLUR. DO NOT EAT OR DRINK FOR A ½ HOUR AFTER using the Phos-Flur rinse. Using the Phos-Flur rinse every night dramatically reduces the risk of getting decalcifications (permanent staining).
- Teeth should be flossed after the final brushing of the day. At your insertion appointment, you will be shown how to use floss-threaders to floss your teeth with braces on.
- Plaque disclosing tablets are provided with your start up kit and may be purchased at your local pharmacy in the dental department. They stain plaque red or purple and show you the areas that you or your child are missing when you or they brush. When you first get the braces, use the disclosing tablets at night for the first few nights after you brush. Then re-brush to get the missed areas clean. If your child is having difficulty with maintaining adequate oral hygiene during treatment, then disclosing tablets should be used after the night time brushing several times per week to double check that brushing has been done properly.
- Take extra good care of your teeth and your braces.