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A Comprehensive Guide to Caring for Your Child’s Teeth with Braces 

added on: November 20, 2023

Getting braces can be an exciting time for a kid and is almost a right of passage as they’re growing up. However, when your child gets braces, there’s a lot more to it than picking out fun colors. It’s essential that kids take excellent care of their teeth while wearing braces, which will require some changes in their oral hygiene routine. Braces, while crucial for a straight and healthy smile, can make oral care more challenging. To help you navigate this important aspect of your child’s dental health, your pediatric dentist in Spring has put together a comprehensive guide on how to care for your child’s teeth when they have braces.

  1. Regular Dental Check-ups

The journey to a beautifully aligned smile begins with a visit to the orthodontist or your pediatric dentist in Spring. Regular check-ups are essential during your child’s orthodontic treatment. Your dental team will monitor the progress of the braces, make necessary adjustments, and ensure your child’s teeth are moving as planned. Typically, these visits are scheduled every six to eight weeks.

  1. Brushing

Proper brushing is crucial for maintaining oral health during orthodontic treatment. It’s essential to brush your teeth and braces after every meal. Here’s how to do it effectively:

  • Use the Right Tools: Invest in a soft-bristle toothbrush and interdental brushes (tiny brushes specifically designed for cleaning between braces) to clean hard-to-reach areas.
  • Angle Matters: Hold the toothbrush at a 45-degree angle to the gum line to remove plaque effectively.
  • Brush Gently: Be gentle to avoid damaging the braces. Brush each tooth carefully and spend time cleaning around the brackets.
  • Floss Daily: Flossing with braces can be challenging, but it’s necessary to prevent food particles from getting stuck. Use a floss threader to navigate between wires.
  1. Watch What They Eat

Certain foods can damage braces or get stuck in them, leading to hygiene issues and additional appointments. Advise your child to avoid hard, sticky, and sugary foods as they can cause problems. Instead, focus on a diet rich in soft fruits and vegetables and encourage plenty of water consumption to wash away food debris.

  1. Orthodontic Wax

Braces can sometimes cause sore spots in the mouth, especially when first installed or after adjustments. To ease this discomfort, orthodontic wax can be applied to the brackets or wires that are causing irritation.

  1. Sports and Mouthguards

If your child plays sports, it’s essential to protect their braces (and teeth) with a mouthguard. In fact, everyone should wear a mouthguard when playing sports no matter what age and whether or not they have braces. Consult your pediatric dentist in Spring to get a customized mouthguard for maximum protection.

  1. Regular Replacement of Elastics and Bands

If your child’s orthodontic treatment includes elastics or bands, make sure they replace them as recommended. These components play a crucial role in aligning the teeth, and worn-out elastics won’t be as effective.

  1. Emergency Kit

Prepare a small dental emergency kit to keep on hand. Include orthodontic wax, a small mirror, floss, and a toothbrush for on-the-go cleaning. It can be a lifesaver if your child experiences any issues with their braces while away from home.

  1. Consistency and Patience

Orthodontic treatment can be a lengthy process, and it requires patience. Encourage your child to remain consistent with their oral care routine and attend all scheduled appointments. Teach your child the importance of maintaining good oral hygiene and make it a part of their daily routine. Proper brushing and flossing should become second nature. The results will be worth the effort!

Caring for a child’s teeth when they have braces is a significant responsibility, but it’s also an investment in their future oral health and confidence. With consistent, effective oral care and support from their dental team, your child can achieve a beautiful, healthy smile and the self-assurance that comes with it. Remember that each child’s orthodontic journey is unique, so be patient, stay informed, and adapt your care routine as needed. The end result will be a radiant smile that’s truly something to cherish.