Brushing & Flossing

Whether you have metal or clear braces, or Invisalign clear aligners, the best way to ensure a clean and healthy smile during orthodontic treatment in Walnut Creek is brushing and flossing. Food particles can grow on teeth and in braces, and over time, turn into plaque. The bacteria that results from this growth can lead to gum disease, tooth decay and even loss of teeth. Dr. Powers at Smile Power Orthodontics wants to make sure you dodge these problems by taking special care of your braces, teeth, and gums to ensure you will have the best possible result.

Brushing Tips For Our Walnut Creek Patients

We recommend that all of our Walnut Creek patients use a toothbrush with soft bristles and a small strip of fluoride toothpaste to brush their teeth with metal or clear braces. Moving the brush in small circular motions can help you reach those hard-to-get particles under your gumline. Hold the toothbrush at an angle and brush slowly and carefully, covering all areas between teeth, between braces and the surface of each tooth. It will take you several minutes to thoroughly brush your teeth. Brush up on the lower teeth, down on the upper teeth and the outside, inside and chewing surface of your front and back teeth. Brush your tongue and the roof of your mouth before you rinse.
Especially when you have metal braces, brush your teeth four times daily to avoid the accumulation of food particles in your teeth and braces:

  • In the morning after breakfast
  • After lunch or right after school
  • After supper
  • At bedtime
You'll have to replace your toothbrush more frequently when you wear metal or clear braces due to the friction of the appliances. As soon as the bristles start to wear down or fray, replace your toothbrush with a new one. It may be challenging for your toothbrush to reach some areas under your archwire. Don't swallow any toothpaste; rinse your mouth completely with water after you stop brushing. It is crucial to floss and use an antibacterial mouthwash and fluoride treatment during your orthodontic treatment and beyond for optimal oral hygiene.


Flossing Tips for Our Walnut Creek Patients

Inevitably there will be areas between the teeth that a toothbrush can't reach. Dental floss to the rescue! Use dental floss to remove food particles and plaque. Flossing takes more time and patience when you are wearing braces, but it is important to floss your teeth every day.
Our Walnut Creek office will supply you with a floss threader that makes it easier to floss with braces. Use the reusable floss threader to floss under your archwire every day. Pull a short length of floss from the container through the threader and slide it up and down along the front of each tooth. You will be able to feel when the tooth is clean and hear the squeak of the floss against your clean teeth. Use care around your archwire and do not floss too forcefully around it or put too much pressure on it. After you floss between your archwire and braces, floss between your other teeth and gums.
If you are flossing without the floss threader, pull a short section of floss from the dispenser. Wrap the ends of the floss tightly around your middle fingers. Guide the floss between all teeth to the gum line, pulling out food particles or plaque. Unwrap clean floss from around your fingers as you go, so that you have used the floss from beginning to end when you finish. Floss behind all of your back teeth.
Always floss at night to make sure your teeth are clean before you go to bed. When you first begin flossing around your braces, your gums may bleed a little. If the bleeding does not go away after the first few times, let our staff know at your next visit. 

Brushing and Flossing With Braces

For our Walnut Creek braces patients, we want to make sure you read these tips on brushing and flossing carefully as it is extremely important that you make the effort to brush at least twice a day and to floss at least once a day. When you are wearing any type of braces, you are more susceptible to tooth decay. Food particles can find their way under your wires and around your brackets and, mixed with saliva, this bacteria can cause plaque buildup if not brushed away. Brushing alone doesn't always remove these food particles and so flossing is required to get between and behind your teeth and appliances. The friendly hygienists at Smile Power Orthodontics make it their mission to make sure you understand how to brush and floss with braces, so be sure to ask if you have any questions or are having any difficulties.

Find Your Smile at Smile Power Orthodontics

We can't wait to help you achieve a healthier, more beautiful smile.Whether you are a teen or an adult, you deserve to have the best and brightest beautiful smile in Walnut Creek! Contact Dr. Powers and her friendly staff to answer any questions you have about metal braces, Invisalign or any other orthodontic treatment we offer. When you're ready to begin building your new smile, contact our office at (925) 937-1333 for your free first evaluation. Dr. Powers will examine your situation and offer the best-individualized treatment plan for you. Let's get started today!