Dental braces correct misalignments of the teeth and jaws to help give children, and a growing number of adults as well, a perfect smile. Unfortunately a fixed brace can pose a number of problems when you're trying to clean your teeth. People of any age who wear a dental brace should therefore note the following tips:
- Brush your teeth and brace thoroughly with fluoride toothpaste after every main meal and before going to bed (Caution! Toothpastes with a fluorine content of 0.1% to 0.15% are not suitable for children. Detailed information [in German] on the correct fluorine content for each age group can be found on the homepage of the Federal Food Safety and Veterinary Office).
- It's advisable to get a special toothbrush for brace wearers. Otherwise you can use a medium-hard brush with a short head.
- Before you clean your teeth, rinse your mouth out thoroughly with water to get rid of larger piece of food debris.
- Clean every single tooth with circular movements. To get to the bits under the wire you should use the brush at a 45-degree angle between the wire and the tooth. The chewing surfaces and inner surfaces of the teeth can be brushed normally with a circular movement.
- It's a good idea at least once a day to clean between the bands, brackets and springs using an interdental toothbrush, and use dental floss to clean between the teeth. It's best to use floss specially designed for wearers of braces, which also cleans the area between the wire and gums.
- Specialists advise wearers of braces to spend ten minutes twice a day on dental hygiene.
- Once or twice a week you should clean your teeth with a high-dose fluoride gel. Here it's important to only spit it out when you're finished, but not to rinse out your mouth.
Removable braces also have to be taken care of.
If you wear a removable brace you should clean it with a toothbrush under running water. If you do this every day you don't need cleaning tablets, as they can corrode the metal parts.
Avoid certain foods
Steer clear of sticky sweets such as licorice, caramel and toffee, which will stick to your brace and are difficult to remove. Starchy foods like crisps and saltsticks also tend to stick to your teeth. You should also avoid biting directly into hard foods such as apples, as this can put the wire out of shape. It's better to cut it into bite-sized pieces and chew carefully.
Dental insurance protects your teeth and wallet
SWICA advises parents to take out DENTA dental insurance in addition to COMPLETA TOP supplementary insurance before their child turns five. Depending on the benefit category this will cover up to 80 per cent of the costs of dental treatment and orthodontic corrections for children and young people. For more information, please contact us.