Waterpik or Oral Irrigator? – How to Floss with Braces?

Braces are important in correcting your dental problem; however, flossing can be a problem with the braces on. No matter how difficult it is, or how long it takes, brushing and flossing even with braces is important for a healthy and beautiful smile.
Chatfield Invisalign dentist will provide you with all the help you need. Meanwhile, below are some flossing techniques that can make the whole experience with braces an easier one.

Waterpik or Oral Irrigator

A Waterpik is a unique tool that uses a steady stream of water to clean the spaces between the teeth and along the gum line. Flossing with this device takes only about 3 – 5 minutes because of how effective it is. There are different brands of Waterpik, some of which are very affordable. Some brands offer special tips for orthodontia. These tips are very useful for those with braces because it cleans around brackets and between teeth.

Flossing with a Waterpik

1. Start by filling the machine’s water reservoir with water. For an added bonus of antibacterial, you can add mouthwash; however, this is not necessary.

2. Insert the tapered tip on the water flosser. Press it to send water through the flosser, while making sure it is working properly and that the water pressure is just right.

3. Lean over the sink and place the tip of the flosser in your mouth.

4. Turn the flosser on, and close your mouth to keep the water from splashing out. Allow the water to drain out of your mouth while you floss with Braces.

5. Glide the water stream along the gum line and between each tooth.

6. Repeat along the front and back of each tooth.

7. When you are done, empty the reservoir tank and dry the flosser tip. Store the container to preserve the tip.

Floss Threader

A small, plastic tool called the floss threader will help you speed up the flossing process with a mouth full of braces. This tool helps you pull the floss easily behind the wire of the braces. You can get samples of floss threader from your orthodontist; however, they are also available in supermarkets and pharmacies in the oral care section.

Flossing with a Floss threader

1. Pull a waxed floss of about 18 – 24 inches through the eye of a floss threader.

2. Insert the point of the plastic needle under the wire of your braces, and gently pull the floss thread through while holding the threader in one hand.

3. To get more control over the thin, waxed thread, wrap it around your index finger.

4. Press the floss gently between the two teeth, sliding it up and down along the sides of the two teeth. For the upper teeth, make an upside-down U-shape. Go up the side of one tooth to the gum line, and then down the side of the other tooth.

5. Pull the floss out gently from between the teeth, and then pull it out from under the wire.

6. Rethread the floss threader and repeat the same process with another set of teeth.

Traditional Flossing

This flossing technique is very effective for removing food particles between teeth; however, it can be quite tricky for people with braces on. If this technique is what you plan to use, you should know it will last for about 10 – 15 minutes. You should also use waxed floss, as unwaxed floss can tear and get into the brackets and wires.

How to use Traditional Floss with Braces?

1. Cut a floss of about 18 – 24 inches.

2. Thread the floss between the main wire and your teeth. It would be better if you stand in front of a mirror so you can see what you are doing.

3. Wrap both ends of the floss around your index finger to make handling easier.

4. Press the floss gently between the two teeth, sliding it up and down along the sides of the two teeth. For the upper teeth, make an upside-down U-shape. Go up the side of one tooth to the gum line, and then down the side of the other tooth.

5. Remove the floss and gently unthread it from behind the wire, making sure not to accidentally nodge the wire out.

6. Move to the next pair of teeth and repeat the process.

General tips for floss with Braces

To keep your teeth shining bright, adopt the following tips

Avoid Whitening Toothpaste – Whitening toothpaste is a great option if you have no braces on. However, if you do, do not consider using a whitening toothpaste. While it will work very well in brightening up the areas of your exposed teeth, you will end up having off-white areas when the braces eventually come off. This is because the whitening product cannot get under the brackets.

Consider Electric Toothbrush – Electric toothbrushes have been verified as a better cleaner than manual toothbrushes. Although they can be expensive, you can ask your dentist for a voucher or recommendation.

Schedule Regular Cleaning – Even with braces on, going for regular cleaning with a dental hygienist is a good idea. They have the equipment and materials to deep clean around the brackets and wires to prevent staining. A professional cleaning every three months is ideal.

With braces on, you have the chance to have a beautiful smile and protection from oral problems in the future. Get all the information you need about caring for your braces by visiting here.