Brushing & Flossing

When you brush:

Place the bristles of your toothbrush at a 45-degree angle to your gums

Make gentle brushing motions in a circular pattern

Brush the outer surface of your tooth enamel along with the areas that you use to chew

Use the upper portion of your toothbrush to clean the inner surfaces of each tooth

When you floss:

Use 18 inches of dental floss and wrap the ends around both index fingers

Gradually unravel the floss and thread it between your braces and archwire

Make a C-motion as you floss around your braces

Use the same motion in between each tooth

Repeat this technique for every area around your braces and each tooth.

For printable instructions, click here.

Your teeth will maintain their health if you brush your teeth after every meal and floss once per day. Frequent brushing ensures any remaining bacteria is removed every time you clean your teeth.

We also recommend avoiding certain foods that may make it harder to clean your teeth. Sugary, sticky, and chewy foods can become lodged in between or within the surface of the teeth and be difficult to remove.

If you are having trouble brushing or flossing efficiently, talk to our orthodontist or a team member about other tools you can use to remove plaque from your teeth. These tools include a two-minute timer that helps you allocate the appropriate amount of time to your teeth as you brush, and a floss threader, which makes it easier to work the floss around the brackets and wires of your braces.

Before bed, we recommend that you use the timer and brush your upper teeth for two minutes and your lower teeth for two minutes. It may seem like an eternity, but getting all the plaque off your teeth before bed is critical due to your salivary flow decreasing at night and increasing your chances of tooth and gum problems if plaque is left on the teeth.

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Taking care of your teeth while in braces will help ensure you have the best smile possible when it’s time for your braces to come off!

If you would like more information about the orthodontic services we provide, including your options with braces, contact Charleston Orthodontic Specialists today at 843-642-8100 to schedule an appointment for your free exam.