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Brushing with Braces

Mar 27

Written by:
3/27/2019 12:30 PM  RssIcon

Braces require extra time and effort to keep your smile clean and clear of food. At Campbell Orthodontics, we understand that brushing and flossing your teeth can be especially challenging with braces. But just because it isn’t easy, doesn’t mean it isn’t worth it! That is why we work hard to ensure you have the proper tools and techniques for effective brushing and flossing during your orthodontic treatment. 

Braces have a tendency to trap food and plaque on your teeth and require extra care to clean. The best way to make sure your smile stays healthy during treatment is to brush and floss well at least twice a day. If the food is allowed to set on your teeth, it could cause permanent discoloration of your smile. Additionally, plaque build up causes bacteria growth, gum disease and tooth decay. Yuck!

At Campbell Orthodontics, we want to ensure your smile stays healthy and white during your treatment. That is why we give each patient a care kit the day they get their braces placed. The kit contains all the supplies you need to take care of your teeth. We show you how to use each item in your kit, and we are happy to answer any questions you may have. We will also give you a grade on your brushing and flossing at each adjustment visit so you will know how you’re doing. 


It is best to use a toothbrush with soft bristles or an electric toothbrush and a fluoride toothpaste. There are three areas that are frequently missed when brushing: behind the archwire, behind any hooks that are on the braces, and along the gumline between the braces and the gum tissue. If you miss these areas, you will get marks on your teeth that cannot be removed.

You will need to brush at least three times per day (after meals and before bed) and floss once per day. Replace your toothbrush every three months or as soon as the bristles start to wear down or fray.


To keep your smile clean and healthy, you must floss at least once per day.

We recommend using a floss threader to reach tough spots under your archwire. To use this tool, simply guide the floss between all teeth to the gum line to remove food and plaque. Unwrap clean floss from around your fingers as you go, so that you have used the floss from beginning to end when you finish. Don’t forget to floss behind the back of your teeth!

It is normal for your gums to bleed when you first start flossing. You may have gingivitis and need to floss more frequently until the area is healthy. If the bleeding does not go away after a few days of consistent flossing, inform a staff member at your next appointment.

Flossing does take more time and patience when you are wearing braces, but it is an essential step in creating your perfect, healthy smile.

Don’t Skip the Dentist!

Good oral hygiene is essential for a health smile. However daily cleaning is NOT enough to guarantee your teeth are protected from bacteria and decay. Regular dental visits are essential for a healthy and beautiful smile. If you are not currently   seeing a dentist or are looking for a new dental home, give us a call today and let Dr. Campbell help you find a dentist you can trust.