Have you ever been plagued with bad breath? Besides being embarrassing, bad breath can indicate excessive plaque and bacteria. Unfortunately, those with braces may have a harder time cleaning away food particles after a meal or snack. That’s because your wires and brackets create nooks and crannies where food can hide (and smell!). Fortunately, there are more options than ever to help you enjoy fresh breath and a beautiful, clean smile.
Flossing options with braces
To prevent buildup and remove plaque, brushing and flossing are essential. However, there are many different types of floss that you can use to keep that smile healthy. Here are some of our favorites!
- Plastic threader needles: Suitable for those with braces, this tool helps you floss around your braces, brackets, and wires. Though it may be more time-consuming at first, practice makes perfect. You’ll enjoy a deeper clean and healthy smile once you get the hang of it!
- Floss picks: These picks are easy to wield and popular with patients of all ages. Simply find one that fits with your braces to remove plaque from between your teeth.
- Interdental brushes: These tiny brushes come in several sizes. They can fit between teeth, brackets, and wires for a deeper, targeted clean. However, depending on how crowded your smile is, they may not fit everywhere in your mouth—making them a great touch-up tool for in between regular brushing and flossing.
- Water flossers: These are a game changer for many patients! By blasting a jet of water, these flossers can clean hard-to-reach areas with the push of a button. The only downside is that you can’t bring a water flosser with you everywhere!
Snacks for clean teeth
Besides oral hygiene, what you eat can impact your breath. Foods that stimulate saliva production and combat dry mouth can help you get a cleaner breath. Eating soft veggies, cut-up fruit, and fibrous foods and drinking plenty of water all help promote saliva, which can neutralize acids and bacteria in the mouth.
Be mindful of foods that may get stuck in braces or teeth, like bread or crackers—especially if you won’t be able to brush or floss after eating them. These may be more difficult to clean away fully and could lead to extra plaque.
Need a quick boost of fresh breath?
Rather than opting for gum or hard and chewy mints, pack mini mouthwashes or LISTERINE® POCKETPAKS® breath strips for a quick boost to your breath. Both are sugar-free options that enhance your confidence and freshen your breath. Just don’t let them replace excellent oral hygiene habits!