Brushing Tips. Use a soft toothbrush. Begin by brushing the front side of your teeth. Look at each tooth as you brush it. Make small circular brushing motions. Brush along the gum line pointing bristles at an angle into the pocket between the tooth and the gum. Plaque likes to hide in this area … beware! Brush above, below, and on the front of each bracket. Then point the bristles under the wire.
Make up your own routine so that no area is missed. For example, begin with your upper right last molar tooth. Brush it clean, and move on to the next tooth. Continue until you reach your upper last left molar tooth, and then switch to the bottom teeth. Again, start on one side and move all the way to the other side making sure to get every tooth. Now that the front sides of your teeth are clean, begin brushing the backside of your teeth in the same order. Finally, brush the biting surface of all your teeth. You should brush your tongue and the roof of your mouth. This will help to make your breath smell better.
After brushing, rinse your teeth thoroughly with water. Take a good look at your teeth and braces in the mirror. Each brace should look shiny and all the teeth should be free of plaque or food. If you see any places that were missed, quickly brush that area again with only the toothbrush and water. Toothpaste will only block your view.
Cleaning Between the Teeth: One of the hardest areas to keep clean is between the teeth and under the wire. For this reason, we have given you a special type of brush called an Inter-dental (Proxy) toothbrush. It has a very small brush designed to clean in these hard to get to areas. Use it to clean between all of your teeth. It should be used at least once each day, ideally when you brush before going to bed. If needed, use it as often as you can.
How Often Do I Need to Brush: In order to make sure your teeth and gums stay healthy when the braces are taken off, you need to brush at least three times each day, ideally in the morning, afternoon (or after school), and before going to bed. You should spend at least 3-5 minutes each time you brush.
Consequences of Poor Brushing: If you don’t do a good job when you brush and/or don’t brush often enough, the consequences can be terrible. When the braces are taken off, what can be left are ugly, red swollen gums, and holes or permanent white spots on the fronts of teeth. All of this can be avoided with good brushing from the start.
Clean Teeth for Appointments: Please brush your teeth well before every appointment. It is very difficult as well as unpleasant to work on dirty teeth. We will grade your brushing at each appointment … and we are strict. Don’t be offended or discouraged if we criticize your brushing. We are only trying to make sure you will have the best smile after the braces are taken off.