Neglecting your oral health, particularly when you’re undergoing orthodontic treatment, can be much worse for you than you might realize. Wearing braces requires extra attention to oral hygiene to prevent dental issues. Braces can trap plaque and food, leading to enamel demineralization and cavities if not cleaned properly. Failure to maintain oral hygiene after braces removal can result in cavities requiring treatment or, in severe cases, pain while still wearing braces.

Keep reading to learn quick and easy tips from the best orthodontist in Beverly Hills on how to keep your braces clean, comfortable, and functioning optimally. 

The Importance of Proper Braces Care

Whether you’re wearing traditional metal braces, self-ligating braces, or Lightforce braces, proper care of them is essential to both the outcome of the treatment and your overall oral health. Proper care helps to ensure that your treatment progresses smoothly and according to plan. Neglecting your braces can lead to longer treatment times and potentially less effective results. Additionally, caring for your braces can help prevent oral health issues such as tooth decay and gum disease, which can arise if food particles get trapped around the braces and are not properly removed.

Daily Care Routine for Braces

Maintaining a daily care routine for braces is crucial for keeping your braces clean and your oral health in check. You should consult with an orthodontist in Beverly Hills, however, here are some essential daily care tips for braces:

  • Brushing: Brush your teeth after every meal and snack to remove food particles and plaque. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste, brushing gently to avoid damaging your braces. Pay extra attention to brushing along the gumline and around the brackets and wires.
  • Flossing: Flossing with braces can be challenging but is essential for removing food particles and plaque from between your teeth and around your braces. Use a floss threader or orthodontic floss to make flossing easier.
  • Mouthwash: Rinse your mouth with an antimicrobial mouthwash to help reduce bacteria and plaque buildup.
  • Check Your Mirror: After brushing and flossing, check your braces in the mirror to ensure there are no remaining food particles stuck in or around them.

Foods to Avoid and Foods That Are Safe to Eat for Braces

Certain foods can damage your braces or get stuck in them, leading to discomfort and potential oral health issues. Some foods to avoid with braces include hard, sticky, or chewy foods such as:

  • Hard candies
  • Popcorn
  • Nuts
  • Ice
  • Gum
  • Chewy candies

Instead, opt for softer foods that are easier on your braces, such as:

  • Soft fruits and vegetables
  • Yogurt
  • Cheese
  • Pasta
  • Soft bread

Dealing with Braces Discomfort 

It's normal to experience some discomfort when you first get your braces or after adjustments. Some common types include soreness or tenderness in the teeth and gums, especially after adjustments, as well as irritation from wires or brackets. It's important to communicate any discomfort to your orthodontist so they can provide you with the appropriate solutions and adjustments to make your orthodontic experience as comfortable as possible.

Over-the-counter pain relievers can help alleviate any soreness. Additionally, you can also try using orthodontic wax to cover any areas of your braces that are causing irritation.

Maintaining Good Oral Hygiene with Braces

In addition to brushing, flossing, and using mouthwash regularly, there are a few extra steps you can take to maintain good oral hygiene with braces:

  • Regular Dental Checkups: Continue to see your dentist for regular checkups and cleanings throughout your orthodontic treatment.
  • Orthodontic Cleanings: Consider scheduling additional cleanings with your orthodontist to ensure your teeth and braces stay clean and healthy.
  • Avoiding Bad Oral Habits: Avoid habits such as nail-biting, pen-chewing, and using your teeth to open packages, as these can damage your braces.

How to Tell That You Are Not Caring For Braces Properly

Kids especially may have a hard time staying diligent in keeping their braces clean. There are several telltale signs that braces are not being cared for properly, so you’ll need to keep an eye out for the following issues that the best orthodontist for kids Beverly Hills typically sees:

  • Increased Plaque Buildup: White or yellowish buildup around brackets, indicating poor cleaning.
  • Swollen or Bleeding Gums: Red, swollen gums that bleed easily, a sign of inflammation.
  • Bad Breath: Persistent foul odor due to trapped food particles and bacteria.
  • Stains on Teeth: White or brown spots on teeth from plaque leading to enamel demineralization.
  • Loose or Broken Brackets: Damaged appliances from eating hard or sticky foods.
  • Cavities: Holes or pits in teeth, indicating decay from inadequate oral hygiene.
  • Pain or Discomfort: Unusual or persistent pain due to neglected broken wires or brackets.
  • Longer Treatment Time: Slowed orthodontic progress from poor oral hygiene or damaged braces.

Where to Find the Best Orthodontist for Braces in Beverly Hills

Taking care of your braces is essential for a successful orthodontic treatment outcome. By following these tips and tricks, you can ensure that your braces stay clean, comfortable, and effective throughout your treatment. 

At West LA Orthodontics in Beverly Hills, we value the enduring significance of traditional braces and their ability to transform smiles effectively and precisely. As a Beverly Hills orthodontist, Dr. J and our experts are dedicated to delivering the highest standard of care using traditional braces and other advanced orthodontic treatments based on your individual needs. We’re committed to utilizing cutting-edge technologies to provide patients with the safest, most effective, and most personalized treatments available in modern dentistry and orthodontics. 

Ready to enhance your smile with state-of-the-art orthodontics and expert orthodontic care in Beverly Hills from Dr. J at West LA Orthodontics?