Oral Hygiene

Oral hygiene is a vital part of the orthodontic treatment experience. In addition to preventing tooth decay and various forms of oral disease, it ensures that when you do get your braces off, the smile underneath is both straight and beautiful. Learn about the different ways you can keep your smile healthy and bright today!

Interdental Toothbrush

At Jacobson & Tsou Orthodontics, we understand that it can be difficult to practice thorough oral hygiene habits while undergoing orthodontic treatment because appliances can get in the way. However, there are tools to help! A Proxabrush is an interdental (between the teeth) toothbrush that you can use to clean underneath and around your wires and brackets. The Proxabrush will help you clean your braces while maintaining healthy teeth and gums. Just be sure to use the it gently to avoid damaging your braces.

Antibacterial Mouthwash

Peroxyl, a hydrogen peroxide antiseptic mouth rinse, will reduce inflammation to your gums and cheeks. Peroxyl helps prevent infection and decreases irritation that may develop from your braces. To use, rinse your mouth with two teaspoons of Peroxyl (half a capful) for one minute and then spit it out. You may utilize Peroxyl up to four times daily following your schedule for brushing: after meals (or after school) and before bed. Just like peroxide can help heal a scrape on your skin, Peroxyl helps the inside of your mouth heal. In addition to soothing general irritation caused by braces, Peroxyl can treat canker sores, cheek bites, and other minor injuries to the gums. 

Topical Fluoride

Phos-Flur is a sodium fluoride gel that helps prevent tooth decay while you are wearing braces by killing bacteria and replacing minerals in tooth enamel that have been exposed to harmful acids. The use of Phos-Flur does not replace daily brushing and flossing, but should be done following your daily brushing and flossing routine. To use, place a small strip of Phos-Flur on a toothbrush and apply it to your teeth for one minute then spit it out. It is important for the active ingredient to stay on your teeth for 30 minutes, so do not wash it away by eating or drinking immediately after.

Cleaning Your Removable Appliances

If you are using a method of orthodontic treatment other than braces, like Invisalign, brush your removable appliances every day as part of your regular oral hygiene routine. Because food particles and plaque can accumulate on your appliances just as they do on your teeth, soak the appliances daily. To do this, dissolve a Polident, Efferdent, or other denture-cleaning tablet in a glass of room temperature water then drop your appliances in. Your appliances will taste better as a result, and you will prevent plaque and bacterial accumulation.

Smile Brighter Today!

If you desire a beautiful smile, oral hygiene is key. Make sure you keep up with oral hygiene best practices throughout your orthodontic treatment process and beyond. For more information on how to best take care of your teeth while undergoing orthodontic treatment, contact Jacobson & Tsou Orthodontics at our Chicago or Vernon Hills office today!