Flossing is an important oral hygiene practice. It takes more time and patience when you’re in braces. In order to keep your teeth and gums healthy throughout your treatment you will need to brush at least three times per day (after meals and before bed) and floss at least once per day, along with maintaining regular dental cleanings with your dentist. Flossing is the only way to remove plaque that is in the hard to reach areas between your teeth.
Flossing with braces can be tricky, so we’ve put together this guide below, so you can get the hang of it with a little practice (and patience).
Flossing with Braces. It’s important to take your time and do it correctly. You don’t want to snap the floss down on your gums, so be gentle. Before you begin, you should rinse your mouth out with water to flush any loose piece of food from your mouth. Ideally, it is best to floss at night, prior to bedtime, to make sure your teeth are clean. Be sure to floss all of your teeth and not just the ones you can reach. While there are many types of floss, the standard waxed floss you find in the store should be fine.
Carefully thread the floss under the main wire. Parents must do the flossing for children who cannot thread the floss under the main wire of their braces. Make sure there is enough slack to grab in each hand. Grab one end of the floss in each hand and wrap the ends around your index fingers. Slide the floss between the teeth all the way to the gumline. Make sure it rubs against the insides of both teeth. Be gentle while moving it up and down. Remove and repeat.
Pull out food particles or plaque, remove, and move on to the next pair of teeth. Unwrap clean floss from around your fingers as you go. Floss between every set of teeth on the top and bottom of your mouth. Also floss behind your back teeth.
Don’t avoid flossing during treatment because of the difficulty. There are a number of other dental products available to help braces patients with their flossing needs.
A Floss Threader is a simple tool to help you thread dental floss into otherwise difficult areas. It is a piece of stiffened nylon with a loop. Pull out about 18 inches of your standard waxed floss. Insert one end of the floss through the loop of the threader. Insert the tip of the threader under the main wire of your braces and pull the floss through. Once in position, grab the floss in your hands and floss between the teeth as you normally would. Pull the floss out and repeat with the same threader.
A few helpful products:
- Super floss– stiffer than normal floss and can make threading between braces easier
- Interproximal brushes-small spiral brushes with bristles.
We’re here to keep you smiling. We understand flossing during braces treatment can be difficult, and we are here to support you every step of the way.
Flossing is an essential part of taking care of your teeth and gums, so if you have any questions, concerns, or are interested in a complimentary consultation, we want to hear from you!
With two conveniently located offices — in La Costa and North Carlsbad, we make appointments easy and our experienced team gets you in and out as quickly as we can. We look forward to seeing you soon!