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How to keep your teeth clean and maintain a good standard of oral health with a brace

In line with the department of health: delivering better oral health toolkit, we advise you to brush twice daily; last thing at night and at least one other time each day. If you have a fixed orthodontic appliance, we also advise you to brush after every time you eat. It is essential that you use 1350ppm-1500ppm fluoride toothpaste when brushing and 0.05% fluoride mouthwash once daily at a different time of day to brushing. You must use interdental brushes daily to clean the spaces in between your teeth and to clean in between the wire of the fixed appliance. It is good to use disclosing tablets a few times a week to ensure that you are brushing effectively. Failing to maintain a good standard of oral health during orthodontic treatment can lead to problems such as gum disease and tooth decay.

Diet advice for patients with a brace

During orthodontic treatment, it is essential that you adapt to a soft and sugar free diet. You must avoid sweets, chocolate, biscuits, cakes, fizzy drinks, dilute drinks. You must avoid eating sticky/chewy foods such as chewing gum and toffee/caramel as this is likely to break your brace. You must avoid eating hard foods such as crusty bread and nuts; cut foods such as apples into small pieces before eating them. A good food to snack on is cheese because it is not sugary and neutralises the acids in your mouth. Some examples of wholesome foods that are soft to eat are: Pasta, fish pie, chilli and rice, cottage pie.

What to do if your brace breaks

If your appliance breaks, we advise you to call the practice and ask for advice. If required, we will be able to book you an appointment to have your appliance fixed. Repeated breakages are not acceptable and result in prolonged treatment which can be detrimental to the health of the teeth and gums.

Do I still need regular check-ups with my dentist?

Yes. It is essential that you still attend your six monthly routine check-ups, even though you are visiting us regularly for your brace adjustment appointments. Your dentist can offer further preventive treatments and ensure that your general oral health is good. Your dentist will still need to make sure that your teeth and gums are healthy- if any treatment is required such as a filling they are the ones who will provide that treatment.

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