9 Tips to Boost Your Oral Hygiene Routine
Posted on 02/03/2022

At Mack Orthodontics, we make sure to provide comprehensive orthodontic care to all patients- which includes advising on oral hygiene. Part of getting effective results from orthodontic treatment stems from how well you take care of your teeth. With metal braces, it can be hard to reach those tiny spots just by brushing and flossing alone. However, Dr. Mack and staff have 9 tips to help anyone boost their oral hygiene before, during, and after orthodontic care. Incorporate these tips into your daily regime to help you achieve a better-looking, healthier smile.

  1. Use Fluoride-Ingredient Products- Whether you're looking for toothpaste, mouthwash, or other products, look for the ingredient fluoride. Fluoride helps make your teeth more resistant to cavities and helps protect the enamel.
  2. Replace Your Toothbrush Every 3 Months- Your toothbrush will become frayed and less effective at removing plaque and bacteria over time. Once you see that your toothbrush is frayed (or has been at least 3 months since you last replaced it), get a new one. This ensures that your toothbrush is doing a thorough job cleaning your teeth and gums.
  3. Change Your Diet Habits- Lower your consumption of sugar, alcohol, coffee/tea, and carbonated/acidic drinks. These foods and drinks can erode the enamel, which will make you more prone to cavities. If you decide to drink these liquids, use a straw to prevent the contact of the liquid to the teeth. Also get enough proteins, calcium, vitamins, and minerals to keep your teeth strong and durable
  4. Add Mouthwash To Your Routine- Adding antimicrobial mouthwash can help kill more oral bacteria missed in brushing and flossing. It will also help fight against plaque building up. Swish for 30 seconds twice a day.
  5. Get Dental Sealants- Sealants are applied to the surface of your teeth to protect and barricade against cavities. If you have dental insurance, be sure to review your benefits to see if your plan covers the procedure.
  6. Get Handy Tools- One great way to boost up your oral hygiene regime is to use a WaterPik. It is a device that delivers a stream of pressurized water between your teeth, along the gum line, and around your braces (if you have any). Also, try different flossers! If you have braces, try a floss threader, Superfloss, a platypus flosser, and/or a Harp flosser to get into hard-to-reach places. Interdental brushes can also work to get in between the brackets and wires. You can find these online or at your local drugstore/supermarket.
  7. Quit Smoking- Smoking and vaping can lead to yellow teeth, increase the build-up of plaque, and bad breath. It also increases your risk of oral cancer. Quitting can go a long way toward protecting your teeth and gums.
  8. Chew on (the Right) Gum- Sugar-free gum can help reduce bacteria in your mouth. It stimulates saliva (which bathes the teeth with calcium and phosphate ions), which can help replenish the tooth enamel. However, not all gum is the same! Look for gum that has the ADA seal, which means it has been approved by the American Dental Association. You'll want to avoid chewing gum with sugar.
  9. Schedule Regular Dental Check-Ups- Visit your dentist regularly to stay on top of your oral health. Your dentists will be able to detect decay in its earliest, most treatable stages. They also give you a deep cleaning to help keep your teeth and gums healthy.

Come See Us at Mack Orthodontics Today!

If you, or someone you know, is looking to improve their smile and their oral health, come see us at Mack Orthodontics! Dr. Mack and staff will provide you with expert, comprehensive treatment that will work just for you. If you have any questions or concerns about starting, contact our Bettendorf or Eldridge offices today! Schedule an appointment with us! We can't wait to work with you and help you achieve a better-looking, healthy smile!