If you have braces (or will be getting them soon), it’s important to be aware that some people find it difficult to figure out an effective and comfortable method for flossing between and behind braces brackets. It’s true that flossing can be a bit trickier when wires, brackets, bands, and appliances come into play, however it is vital that individuals with braces don’t allow themselves to let their daily flossing habits fall by the wayside!

Flossing your teeth is actually just as important as brushing when it comes to keeping your gums, teeth and mouth healthy. And flossing is even more important when you have braces! This is because braces can sometimes cause food particles and bacteria to become trapped between brackets and teeth, making it more difficult to get teeth really clean. (And food particles that stay stuck in teeth are one of the factors that lead to cavities and gum disease!)

Flossing regularly while wearing braces will keep your teeth healthy and your smile looking bright when your braces are removed. So, how can you ensure proper flossing while wearing braces? Everyone’s mouth is different, so the team at Pavlik Orthodontics put together this list of a couple different methods you can try in order to discover what works best for you.

  • Use a Floss Threader: These allow you to more gently thread dental floss underneath your braces wires before passing it between your teeth.
  • Try a Proxy Brush: There is a special type of brush called a “proxy brush” that exists to help people with braces more easily remove trapped food particles from between teeth and braces. The bristles on this brush are specially shaped to get under the wires and between your teeth smoothly.
  • Invest in a Water Flosser: These flossers are designed to use gentle jets of water in place of thread to effectively flush out food particles from in between teeth and behind brackets.
  • Replace Standard Floss with Waxed Floss: Coated wax dental flosses are less likely to get caught in your braces or tear when they come into contact with metal brackets.

If you or your child is experiencing difficulty flossing with braces, or if you’d like to find out more about how straighter teeth can lead to a healthier mouth, contact the orthodontic professionals at Pavlik Orthodontics at (352) 376-5055.