For most patients of My Family Dentistry, Invisalign aligners are preferable to metal braces for a number of reasons, including comfort and appearance.
However, metal braces are the right decision for some people, like younger children who may have trouble consistently wearing removable aligners. If you or your child has metal braces, you need to be sure you’re using the best flossing tools for braces to protect the health of your gums and teeth while they’re being straightened.
Flossing is a particular challenge for people with braces. The metal brackets and wires can get in the way of the floss, preventing you from easily cleaning in between teeth. If you want your teeth to be not only straight, but healthy and stain-free, you need to be sure to floss daily as well as brush thoroughly.
The 4 Best Flossing Tools for Braces:
#4 – Typical Floss with Threaders
You can still use regular floss with your braces, but a little extra help from a floss threader will make things much easier. You simply thread the floss through the threader, thread the floss around the wire and between teeth, floss, and repeat the process between each subsequent tooth. This process may be a little time-consuming, but it’s cheap and effective. There are a number of great brands of floss threaders available, including Dentek, Plackers, GUM, and Crest.
#3 – Oral-B Super Floss
Especially designed for use with braces, Oral-B Super Floss is a step up from using a floss threader. Super Floss is made from a piece of regular floss. At one end, there is a stiff piece of plastic, no bigger than the floss, but rigid enough to insert between your teeth. This plastic end allows you to quickly and easily insert the floss between teeth around braces wire, floss, and then move on to the next area. This product also includes a small area of “spongy” floss between the plastic threader and the regular floss, which allows you to clean further down under the gum line and around brackets and wires to remove more plaque and food particles before you brush.
#2 – AirFloss
The Sonicare AirFloss is a great choice for kids (or adults!) who have trouble taking the time to floss. In about 60 seconds, it can clean your entire mouth with bursts of air, and there’s no string to get caught in your braces. It’s not as inexpensive as floss threaders or Super Floss, but if you dread flossing, it will help you spend less time in front of the bathroom mirror without sacrificing your oral health.
#1 – Waterpik Water Flosser
A water flossing system like Waterpik’s Water Flosser is also ideal for braces. These systems may have a higher up-front cost than plain floss, but they’re much more comfortable and effective than traditional floss, removing as much as 99.9% of plaque when used correctly. Dr. Mullins thinks that water flossers are actually the best flossing tools for braces, because they make it so easy and comfortable to clean your teeth thoroughly!
No matter which flossing solution you choose, it is imperative to floss regularly to keep your teeth healthy. If you don’t, you may have unsightly stains or even damage when you have your braces removed!
Deciding between braces and Invisalign? Contact us today to see which one is right for you!
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