Let’s face it — for kids who can be stubborn about brushing their teeth, especially while at school, oral care can be tricky. But don’t worry, that’s why we’re here to help with these six easy tips while at school and at home!
Braces Care Tip #1: Use the Right Tools
Brushing and flossing are an important part of anyone’s dental care, but it is especially important for kids with braces. Food and plaque can get easily trapped between your child’s teeth and braces, which can increase their chance of developing cavities. Be sure to ask for our exclusive fluoride treatment that can be applied to you or your child’s teeth every 6 months to add an extra layer of protection while wearing braces!
Here are some additional tools that your child can bring to school and are given to you when you start treatment with Lawless Orthodontics.
1. A Soft-bristled toothbrush: Encourage kids to brush above and below braces at a 45-degree angle.
2. An Inter-ortho brush: Next, reach between braces with a cone-shaped, inter-ortho brush.
3. Use your floss threader after lunch: Most kids with braces benefit from floss threaders, which create a loop for dental floss. This makes threading floss behind braces brackets much easier.
Braces Care Tip #2: Use a Fork and Knife while Eating
I know. Getting a hungry teenager to use utensils while eating school pizza is about as easy as — well, nothing. But when it comes to caring for braces, this is an important one.
Biting into food pushes it up behind and between braces, causing it to get stuck. Hard foods can also damage brackets and wires. Be sure to follow the “Food’s to Avoid” list given to you when you start your braces journey with Dr. Lawless. Any person while in braces while eating foods at school like burgers and pizza, should eat it with a fork and knife. Also, cutting corn off the cob and slicing crunchy fruits and vegetables into bite-sized pieces can be helpful.
Braces Care Tip #3: If you like Sweets, Choose Chocolate
Kids love sugar, but sticky sweets, hard candies and gum have been known to damage braces. Chocolate is a softer option that dissolves quickly without getting stuck. Who knew eating chocolate can be a part of caring for braces! Steer your child toward chocolate if a sweet treat is necessary, but remind them to consume all sweets in moderation. And remember, break large chocolate bars into bite-sized pieces.
Braces Care Tip #4: Be Mindful
Caring for braces extends beyond good oral hygiene. Many kids have unconscious habits — like fingernail biting and chewing on pencils, which can loosen or break braces brackets. Any kind of damage to your braces only extends the length of time you or your child must wear them. Try to help replace these habits with something that won’t cause damage, like a stress ball or a fidget spinner.
Braces Care Tip #5: Listen to Your Orthodontist
Elastics and expanders aren’t the most fun part of the braces journey, and we understand that. However, the discomfort is only temporary and your child’s treatment plan is designed to align their teeth as quickly and safely as possible. No matter how much your child may grumble, encourage children to follow Dr. Lawless and his certified assistant’s instructions about caring for their braces. They’ll thank you later, especially once they enter adulthood with nice, straight, and healthy teeth.
Braces Care Tip #6: Visit Your Dentist
Routine dental exams are another part of caring for braces. Dr. Lawless is board certified to straighten you and your child’s teeth while the dentist can help keep them healthy during treatment. Your dentist, as well as your orthodontist, is an expert on helping kids care for braces. Please call or text our office at 270-781-1025 if you need more tips on how to care for braces or if you are concerned about your child’s oral hygiene during their treatment.