Brushing and Flossing


Brushing is a very important part of your treatment.  Be sure to brush the braces, your tongue, gums, chewing surface and also the backsides of your teeth.   You should use a soft-bristled toothbrush and replace it every 6-8 weeks.  In addition to brushing we recommend using Listerine mouth rinse to help reduce the number of "bad" bacteria in the mouth.  At each visit you will be graded on your overall oral hygiene according to the following scale:  excellent, good, fair, or poor.  Be sure to ash your technician what your grade is at each visit.  Excellent oral hygiene is the only way to prevent the white decalcification marks (permanent scars) on your teeth caused by poor brushing.


Pyco brushes are used in addition to regular brushing at least twice a day.  They are used along the gum line and under the wire between the braces.  These are also convenient to use at school or after eating out.


Floss threaders are used to floss when wires are in place.  To use, thread the floss through the hole on the threader and gently glide the threader under your wire and floss each tooth with an up and down motion.  If there is a wire behind your front teeth, be sure the threader passes under it.  It is important to floss your teeth on a regular basis.


Fluoride helps protect your teeth from decay.  It is provided for you and is to be used once a day at bedtime.  To use:  brush with toothpaste, use mouthwash, floss as normal, then place a drop of fluoride (the size of a pea) on your toothbrush and brush again thoroughly.  When finished you may swish the fluoride and spit it out, BUT DO NOT RINSE.  Do not eat or drink after using the fluoride.  It is important to use fluoride throughout your entire treatment.