Braces Care Instructions

Grand Rapids Braces Dentist

Braces can trap a lot of food, which can lead to cavities and gum problems if your teeth aren’t adequately cleaned. This makes brushing and flossing even more important while you’re wearing braces. Following these brushing and eating tips will keep your smile healthy!


Be sure to brush your teeth right after every meal and before you go to bed, like this:

  1. Start by brushing the outside of each tooth.
  2. Then brush where your gums and teeth meet, using a circular motion.
  3. Brush the inside surface of each tooth.
  4. Brush the chewing surfaces of your teeth last.


Because your toothbrush won’t reach between your teeth, brushing alone won’t keep your teeth clean and healthy. Flossing can help! A floss threader, available from us or a pharmacy, helps you floss with braces on. Floss once a day, like this:

  1. Start by brushing the outside of each tooth.
  2. Thread floss through the threader and slip it up behind your arch-wire.
  3. Pull the floss between two teeth and up under your gum margins.
  4. Rinse with clean water.


Use fluoridated toothpaste as well as a fluoride mouth rinse.


You should be brushing at least three times a day — once at breakfast, at lunch, and before you go to bed. If you are not able to brush after you eat, be sure to rinse thoroughly with water. NEVER skip brushing at night before you go to bed.

Eating Tips

While you’re wearing braces, you can eat almost all of your favorite foods. However, please stay away from these troublemakers:

  1. Sticky chewy foods like taffy, caramels, and jerky.
  2. Hard foods like apples and carrots need to be cut into bite-size pieces.
  3. Crunchy foods like corn chips, popcorn, almonds, and corn nuts.
  4. Eating fewer sweets helps to fight cavities.
  5. Stay away from fruit drinks, sports drinks, and pop!

Poking Wires Or Brackets

From time to time, poking wires or loose brackets causing discomfort may need to be fixed in our office. However there are many things you can do at home to take care of small issues.

  • If your wires start poking, clean nail clippers can be used to trim the wire.
  • If a bracket is irritating your cheeks, take a small piece of your braces wax, and place it on the offending bracket.
  • If a bracket comes loose, it will likely be replaced at your next visit.

As always, feel free to call us with any questions!

Grade yourself!

Take a moment and check where you are on the oral hygiene spectrum. We want you to prevent permanent damage to your teeth. Be a 5 and nothing less!

Grand Rapids Braces