It’s no secret: everyday things can seem a little more difficult when you’re dealing with braces and retainers. In particular, flossing takes special care and commitment, because you have to put in a bit more effort than you normally would.
Have no fear—it doesn't mean it's impossible! Read on to get all the information you need for successfully flossing when wearing braces or a retainer.
The Right Tool
Using the right tool is everything. And for flossing with braces or a retainer, the right tool is a floss threader. This is a small looped implement you can find at your local drugstore that will help guide the floss around your braces or retainer so it can get every tooth. Floss threaders are inexpensive and easy to find— if you’re having trouble tracking one down, ask your local pharmacist to point you in the right direction. You can also order them online and save yourself the trip to the store.
Waxed floss is different from normal floss because it is coated in a thin layer of wax. This helps the floss glide between your teeth and stops it from getting caught on sharp or uneven surfaces. Using waxed floss helps you floss with braces or a retainer with minimal fuss.
If traditional floss isn’t doing it for you, consider buying a water flosser, such as a Waterpik. By using a special orthodontic add-on, this machine will remove plaque that sticks to the brackets and between your teeth, and cleans bacteria from around teeth and gums. Remember, the point of flossing is that you don’t give harmful bacteria places to hide in between your teeth and cause decay. Using a water flosser is just another way to do this.
Keep It Up
It’s important to be consistent with your dental care, just like you would be if you didn’t have braces or a retainer. The better you take care of your teeth now, the healthier they will be when you finally get your equipment off and you can show off your beautiful pearly whites for all to see. Make sure to see your dentist twice a year for cleanings while you have your braces or retainer, or more often if problems arise.
If you have questions about flossing, or about anything else related to your dental health, give our friendly team a call today at either of our two convenient locations or request a consultation.