Dentists recommend flossing once a day as part of your regular oral health care routine. If you have braces, flossing can present some additional challenges, but it should still be considered an essential aspect of your daily care. Below are a few dentist-approved tips for effective flossing with braces.
How to Floss When You Have Braces
1. Use the Right Tools
There are specific flossing tools designed for use with braces. Traditional floss alone can be tricky because it doesn't easily access all the nooks and crannies that come with braces. A floss threader is the most popular option as it helps you comfortably pull the floss behind the wire of the braces.
Remove 12 to 18 inches of floss, insert an end around five inches into the threader's loop, and place the threader under the braces. Then, once the floss is in place, remove the threader and move the floss up, down, back, and forth, guiding it toward the gumline to remove all food particles. Repeat the process for each tooth.
2. Choose Waxed Floss
Waxed floss is much easier for your teeth to handle when you have braces. Unwaxed varieties can catch on braces, shred, and leave fragments of floss in the teeth, which can be stubborn and hard to remove. The extra lubrication provided by the wax helps it glide more comfortably between teeth and reduces the likelihood of snags and shreds—just move the floss slowly and deliberately.
3. Ask for Help
Flossing with braces can be difficult, especially if you're new to it. Your dentist will give you advice about proper flossing techniques, but sometimes an extra set of eyes or hands can be extremely helpful. Don't hesitate to ask a parent, partner, or other loved one to guide you as you floss or get used to a threader. There's no shame in asking for help.
Flossing will help take care of the braces that take care of you. C.R. Sfeir D.D.S., General Dentistry has been providing oral health care to the Lorain County, OH, area for over two decades. Dr. Sfeir and his team offer a wide range of general and cosmetic dentistry services, including tooth implants, root canals, and extractions. Call (440) 960-5200 or visit the office's website to schedule an appointment with a trusted dentist.
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