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How to Keep Your Pearly Whites Healthy With Invisalign And Braces

Invisalign and braces are so much fun to maintain,” said no one ever. Keeping your teeth healthy while maneuvering your braces or taking care of your clear aligners may be tedious, especially for teenagers. But it’s the only way to get that million-dollar smile that you desire. Tell yourself that your braces or clear aligners are only temporary. To have pearly, white teeth to showcase when finished with your orthodontics treatment, you’ve got to do some simple work.

How to Keep Your Pearly Whites Healthy With Invisalign And Braces
(Miriam Alonso / pexels)

Six Tips For Brushing With Braces

First, let’s talk about brushing with braces. Remember to brush your teeth with braces. You must be even more diligent about brushing and rinsing your mouth when you have braces. They cause an increased risk for plaque buildup, and the food particles the brackets and wires attract. They create a shelf around the teeth, making them much more challenging to clean. Plaque is the enemy of the teeth. It can stain teeth and wear away tooth enamel. Here are six tips for brushing with braces:

1. Use A Toothbrush With Soft Bristles

If you’re a fan of using a super stiff toothbrush, you may have to change that habit while you have braces. The toothbrush bristles must touch the gums to get in all the nooks and crannies around your braces. A softer toothbrush will accomplish this easier without irritating your gums too much.

2. Rinse And Brush After Every Meal

Never underestimate the power of a quick rinse and brush after meals when you have braces. The people around you will appreciate the time you took to freshen your breath, and you will reap the rewards of a healthy mouth. Rinse your mouth with water after meals, especially when eating highly acidic foods. Investing in a travel toothbrush and toothpaste can be worth it, as no one likes to have unsightly food stuck in their teeth.

3. Avoid Toothpaste Overkill

The excess foam from a giant glob of toothpaste may make spotting the plaque and debris difficult. Begin brushing with a wet toothbrush and clean around the brackets and between the wires. Try to use a picking motion instead of brushing hard. Then, add a pea-sized drop of toothpaste, finish with a good brush, and rinse.

4. Set A Two-Minute Timer

Brush your teeth for at least two minutes and target each part of your mouth: upper right, upper left, lower right, lower left. Clean the inner and outer sides of your teeth. Set a timer to make sure you hit that two minutes every time.

5. Use A Waterpik Or Floss Threader

It can be so tedious to floss with braces. They’re always in the way! Enter floss threader. Tying floss to a threader can make guiding it through the wire easier. Use a saw-like motion and say, “Goodbye plaque!” You could also try a Waterpik water flosser. They clean with a stream of water and are quick and easy.

6. Use Mouthwash

When you have braces, you’ll want to buy that anti-cavity, fluoride mouthwash in bulk. It will reduce tooth decay and protect your enamel. Rinse your mouth for one minute after brushing at night to help eliminate pesky tiny debris before bedtime.

Three Must-Dos For Caring For Your Teeth With Invisalign

Invisalign clear aligners are a popular alternative to braces because the custom trays are removable and invisible compared to traditional metal brackets, wires, and elastics. One of its biggest appeals is its “invisible” appearance. However, Invisalign takes some self-discipline and requires proper care and maintenance. Here are three “musts” when wearing clear aligners:

1. Never Eat While Wearing Invisalign

The cool thing about Invisalign is that you can take them off to eat and brush. However, did you know that you must take them off to eat? The only thing you can consume with your Invisalign is water. Do not drink any other drinks or eat any food while they are on. Colored drinks will stain them, and food can damage the trays. Coffe-stained aligners ruin the point of them being invisible, but replacing your aligners can be expensive.

2. Brush Before Putting Them On

You’ve taken your Invisalign off to eat? Check. Now, you need to be disciplined enough to brush after every meal and put them back on immediately. It can be easy to become lax and forget to put them back on or brush before you do.

Shoving them back on after eating your lunch might also be tempting, but you must brush first. Otherwise, you’re squishing the remaining food bits into your teeth and aligners, damaging both over time. Whether in your purse, backpack, or pocket, you should have a toothbrush and some flossers with you at all times in case you eat something.

3. Rinse Before Reapplying

After you take your Invisalign off to eat or brush your teeth, please give them a good rinse and place them in their case. This helps keep them clean and safe from accidentally tossing after your meal–their invisibility can be their downfall. Give them another quick rinse right before you put them back on. It’s essential to keep the aligners clean.

Maintaining a bright and healthy smile with braces or aligners on may seem tedious, but if you get in the habit from the get-go, taking all the proper care steps will seem like second nature. Plus, seeing that show-stopping smile in the mirror for the first time post-treatment will make it all worth it.

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