The orthodontists at Smiles for Kids Dentistry & Orthodontics in Albuquerque, New Mexico can help correct bite and alignment issues, but that is not enough to maintain a healthy smile. Proper oral care is essential, and it becomes even more important for kids with braces.

How Braces Affect Oral Hygiene

Good oral hygiene includes:
  • Twice-daily brushing
  • Once-daily flossing
  • Semiannual dental checkups
Braces can make these oral care practices more challenging. The brackets and wires create a lot of places for food to get stuck near the gumline, and that promotes the overgrowth of oral bacteria, which accelerates tooth decay. Not to mention, food stuck in braces can be embarrassing.

Best Oral Hygiene Practices While Wearing Braces

In order to effectively remove food and plaque without damaging braces, your child should:
  • Gently brush teeth three times each day—morning, afternoon and evening
  • Clean around brackets and wires using an interproximal brush at least once each day
  • Floss once each day
  • Use mouthwash as needed after snacks
Kids with braces can minimize the gunk that gets stuck in braces by avoiding:
  • Sticky food and treats, like gum, taffy and other types of candy
  • Hard foods, such as nuts
Many of these oral hygiene habits will continue after the active phase of teeth straightening treatment is over. During the retention phase, your child’s oral care will also need to include daily cleaning of their custom-fit retainer. Our orthodontists will provide instructions to make sure you and your child know how to keep teeth and orthodontic appliances in good condition.

Make Time for Good Oral Hygiene

Checkups and follow-up appointments for orthodontic services do not substitute for semiannual dental checkups. Your child still needs to see their Smiles for Kids dentist twice each year for optimal oral health. Contact us today to schedule an appointment.

We have two Albuquerque locations! West Side 892.9010 = Northeast Heights 299.9606