One of the biggest challenges you will encounter while you have braces is maintenance.  How and when should you clean your braces?  The more you practice cleaning your braces, the easier it becomes.  You should clean your braces at least three times each day throughout treatment.  Clean them in the morning before you go out for the day.  Clean them after lunch or after school.  Clean them again at the end of the day, making sure that no debris is left behind before you go to sleep.  When you first have your braces put on, you are given a kit containing many of the tools necessary to clean your mouth while you have braces.  The video below demonstrates how to use a toothbrush to thoroughly clean all surfaces of the teeth and braces.  It also shows how to use the proxy brush which is included in your hygiene kit.  Note how long it takes to clean the teeth well and plan accordingly.  Brushing your teeth with braces is not easy but if you put in the time and take good care of your teeth during treatment, you can expect outstanding results.

Even if you do everything you’re supposed to do to maintain your braces, you may still occasionally encounter problems with your braces.  The presence of braces may irritate the lips, brackets may get loose and wires can protrude and poke the cheeks, gums or lips.  Fortunately, these and most other orthodontic problems can be solved temporarily with the orthodontic wax which was provided to you in your oral hygiene kit.  If you don’t have any at home, it can be purchased in most pharmacies and supermarkets.  Place the wax as shown in the video below by first softening a small piece by rolling it between your fingers.  Firmly press the wax against the offending area of the braces, making sure that no sharp edges remain uncovered.  Once the situation is temporarily resolved with the help of the wax, call our office to schedule an appointment for evaluation with the orthodontist.

These videos can be found along with other patient education clips on our YouTube channel.