According to the American Association of Orthodontics, the number of Americans with braces has nearly doubled in the last three decades.
But, braces can take some getting used to at first, especially when it comes to flossing.
If you’re struggling to get the hang of flossing with braces then these quick and easy tricks are for you!
1. Used Thin Waxed Floss
You can still use ordinary dental floss if you have braces. But you need to make sure that it’s waxed and as thin as possible.
This is because non-waxed floss tends to get stuck and break when flossing with braces. And floss that’s too thick will be difficult to pass through the small gaps between your teeth and the wires on your braces.
2. Get a Long Enough Strip
Not using enough floss can also result in problems as there isn’t enough slack in the floss to maneuver through your teeth.
Take a section of floss around 18 inches long and then thread the end behind the main wire in your braces.
Focus on flossing your teeth rather than the wire. Avoid using force and go slowly, then pull the floss out carefully rather than yanking it out.
3. Use an Orthodontic Floss Threader
If you’re finding it difficult to pull regular floss through your teeth, a floss threader can make flossing with braces a lot easier.
A floss threader is a rigid but flexible plastic tool that works like the eye of a needle. You’ll find them in most stores selling toothbrushes and toothpaste.
To use it, pass the floss through the loop and then pull the threader to move the floss between your teeth above the wire.
4. Try a Waterpik
Waterpiks are another useful tool which can make it easier for people with braces to keep on top of dental hygiene. You can find waterpiks in most drugstores for around $50.
Waterpiks work by firing a thin stream of water at high pressure into the spaces between your teeth. Since the water passes easily between the wires in your braces, you can reach areas that might be difficult to access with floss.
However, you should use a waterpik to complement flossing rather than as an alternative.
5. Help Younger Children
Younger children with braces are likely to find flossing with braces particularly difficult. And, even if your child insists they can do it on their own, it’s a good idea to check that they are flossing properly.
Have your child sit down in a well-lit area as the process can take a long time.
Follow These Tricks to Make Flossing With Braces Easier
It can be difficult to floss when you have braces, but with these five tricks, you’ll be a pro in no time!