Care and maintenance of your mouth and braces
26 March 2020
At Leamington Spa Orthodontics we want you to look after and care for your teeth and braces best you can. So here are a few tips to prevent breakages and keep your teeth and gums healthy.
Eating and drinking wrong foods can damage your teeth or cause breakages to your brace.
Eat a soft diet. It's essential throughout all the orthodontic treatment. Cut all food up into small pieces. Eat plenty of eggs, fish, meat mince, pasta, soups, mashed vegetables etc.
Drink water or milk
Healthy Snacks:-small pieces of soft cheese,stewed fruit,pieces of banana,melon. As a treat with your meal :-flavoured yoghurts,mousses,ice cream,soft sponges.
Try to avoid
- ALL HARD, STICKY and CRUNCHY FOODS: sweets,chocolate bars,hard fruit and vegetables,hard breads,crusty pizza,nuts,popcorn,crunchy cereals,hard crisps etc.
- ALL fizzy drinks, even sugar free and fruit juices, are high in sugar and are acidic so should be avoided.If you do want a drink,have it at meal time,using a straw preferably and have water afterwards.
- Vinegar based salad dressings,pickles and fruit teas are also harmful.
- Avoid chewing gum.
- Avoid nail biting and chewing pens and pencils.
- AVOID SUGARY SNACKS BETWEEN MEALS.
KEEPING YOUR MOUTH AND BRACES CLEAN
Doing this prevents sore gums,inflammation,bleeding gums and tooth decalcification (permanent marking on your tooth enamel).
- Brush with a small medium textured tooth brush for three minutes after every meal.If using a powered brush,brush for two minutes.Brush carefully and thoroughly each time with flouride toothpaste around the brackets and gum margins.Spit out toothpaste,do not rinse afterwards.
- Now clean using your interdental brush,tepe brush or water flosser to clean between the wires and brackets to remove further plaque and food debris.
- Use an alcohol free high fluoride mouthwash daily.Do not use at the same time as brushing.Wait an hour before rinsing after brushing.
- Disclose once a week.It is a harmless dye which stains the dental plaque in the mouth present.So best done after all your cleaning then you can see the areas you are missing with either your brush or interdental cleaning.If there is dye showing ,clean until you have removed all the plaque/dye.The solution will colour your tongue and lips Use vaseline on lips to lessen this and brush your tongue.
If you have run out of disclosing tablets,you can use food cake colouring safely. Put a few drops in an egg cup and use a cotton bud to place the dye around the teeth and brackets.Have a few rinses of water and any dye left,get brushing.
ADVICE IF YOUR GUMS ARE SORE AND BLEEDING
If dirt (plaque) and food debris builds up in your mouth then your gums will become sore,inflamed and bleed a lot (gingivitis).Also tooth decay can occur. You just need to brush longer,gently but thoroughly brushing along the gum margins.The gums may bleed whilst you are brushing but after a period of time the bleeding will cease and your gums should not be red.
Some adjunct brand mouthwashes i.e Corsodyl or Peroxyl will help with gingivitis but it is the brushing which makes the difference.
The best mouthwash to sooth the gums and help healing is a cup of hot water with a teaspoon of salt. Swish in your mouth until cool.Repeat until all gone (test the solution with your finger first). Can repeat up to three times a day.