If you or your child has recently had braces placed on the teeth, then you may have some general dental concerns when it comes to the braces. One of these concerns may be the development of cavities around the braces themselves. This is an issue that can develop, but there are quite a few ways that you can keep cavities at bay.
Invest In An Orthodontic Brush
If you have traditional braces, then a regular toothbrush simply will not clean like you need it to. It will not have bristles that cut around your braces to reach the dental enamel that sits closest to the brackets. This can cause plaque and tartar to hide around the braces and cause cavities to develop. If you want to remove food and plaque before an issue develops, then invest in an orthodontic toothbrush. This type of brush has a v-shape on the end that can fit easily underneath wires to clean close to brackets. These brushes also have shorter bristles along the middle and longer ones on the edge. This allows the brush to hug each bracket so it cleans on all sides.
Small and round end-tuft toothbrushes are a good choice as well. So are smaller toothbrushes, like the ones made for small children, that can be maneuvered around brackets.
When choosing your toothbrush, make sure to find one with softer nylon bristles. Harder brushes can scrape the enamel and cut the gums. This can encourage the formation of cavities and gum disease.
Go Easy On The Sweets
You likely have a long list of snacks and other foods that you cannot eat once your braces are secured to your teeth. Popcorn, caramels, gum, licorice, and a variety of other chewy, crunchy, and hard foods are typically on the top of the list. While you can eat sugary foods, like chocolate, ice cream, peanut butter cups, popsicles, and hard candies, you should minimize the number of sweet treats you consume.
Sugar can stick to the elastics that keep the wires in place around your braces. The sugar is then consumed by bacteria in the mouth, and the acids they produce eat away at your tooth enamel. This can easily cause cavities to form.
If you do decide to eat some sweet treats, then make sure to brush afterwards. If you cannot brush, then rinse your mouth out thoroughly with plain water. Also, a mouthwash rinse can help to keep cavities at bay. Use a tartar control product to reduce cavity formation and bacterial activity.
For more information, contact a professional in your area or visit a website like http://www.cresthillfamilydental.com.