Brace ready- what can I do to be ready to start braces

What can I do to be ready to start braces?

Are you super keen to get your braces fitted? There are a number of things you can do while you are waiting to see your orthodontist to make sure you are ready to start with your orthodontic treatment as soon as possible.

I want to get braces. Is there anything I need to do to be ready to start?

Yes, you need to be dentally fit before you can start braces. Dentally fit means that your mouth is healthy and you have no active dental decay or gum disease.

What will my orthodontist check for before starting braces?

Dr Sinead O Hanrahan | Dr Christine Smith

There are several things your orthodontist will check to ensure you are ready to start your braces. Firstly, they will check that you are dentally fit.

Dentally fit means that your mouth is healthy and you have no active dental decay or gum disease.

If your orthodontist is worried that there may be some active disease within the mouth, they will refer you back to you dentist or to a local dentist to have a full dental check-up. This might involve a full dental examination with the dentist, x-rays of your back teeth, review for dental decay and your gum health. Your dentist would then provide any treatment that is necessary. This could be tooth brushing or flossing instructions to make sure your cleaning is up to scratch, restorative work including fillings, and periodontal cleaning in the form of a scale and polish or deeper gum cleaning.

For a list of dentists in Ireland, click below

Is it a good idea to have a check-up before I get my braces fitted?

It is a great idea to have a full dental check-up before getting your braces fitted. This will make sure that you are ready to start your braces straight away. It is also quite tricky for your dentist to check your teeth once certain braces are fitted so before you start is the best time to have a full comprehensive dental assessment.

Is there anything I can do at home to make sure my gums are healthy?

Gum health is a priority throughout life but especially when you have braces on as you are more at risk of gum disease when your teeth are moving due to orthodontic force.

Good tooth brushing and interproximal cleaning are an essential.

How much should I brush my teeth?

picture of girl brushing her teeth

Most dentists recommend 2 minutes brushing twice a day making sure you are cleaning all surface of your teeth. You can either use a manual or electric toothbrush, whichever you prefer.  Both are effective as long as you spend the full two minutes doing it and don’t miss any surfaces. Disclosing tablets (available at your local chemist) is a great way for checking your brushing. It is advised to chew these small pink tablets for 30 seconds after you have brushed your teeth. Then spit out the excess. When you look in the mirror you will be able to see any plaque that has been left behind as it will be stained dark pink. This is a great tool for visualising how well you are brushing your teeth.

Do I need to clean between my teeth?

Yes, floss or interproximal brushes are designed for cleaning in between your teeth. Personally, I use interproximal brushes as I find them better. Also, it is good to get used to using them as you cannot floss between your teeth when certain braces (train tracks) are attached to your teeth.

What toothpaste should I use?

Dentists recommend using a fluoride toothpaste for brushing your teeth. The number on the tube you should look out for is 1450ppm F (parts per million Fluoride). This is the correct strength for the general population.

Invisalign | Aligner brace | Retainer | Clear Braces | Navan Orthodontics

Should I rinse with water after brushing?

Believe it or not, it is best to spit your toothpaste out and NOT rinse with water. Water only washes all the good Fluoride away which has protective elements for your teeth.

Should I use mouthwash?

Generally not, unless you have a specific gum issue. Again, mouthwashes tend to wash the Fluoride away off your teeth.  I recommend to my patients to brush their teeth for longer rather than using mouthwash.

Is there anything I should/shouldn’t eat to be braces ready?

glass of water, healthy food and drink

Try to limit your intake of sugary foods and drinks. Sugar causes your teeth to decay or develop holes. Holes= fillings! Stick to water or milk only. Avoid adding diluted drinks to your water; even the ones with no added sugar have sugar in them already. Cut our fizzy drinks; even the no added sugar versions are still very acidic on your teeth and can damage your enamel. Try to limit yourself to three meals a day and two healthy snack in between. For healthy food ideas  click below

What happens when I first see my orthodontist?

Ever wondered what happens when you visit your orthodontist for the first time? Click here for a video on how braces are fitted:

What else can I do to be ready to start braces?

Finances- get them in order

At Navan Orthodontics, we offer multiple finance options to suit you and your lifestyle so there are no surprises and no need to pay upfront. Please have a look to see what finance option might suit you best.

Tax Relief

Don’t forget that your orthodontic treatment is tax deductible for you or your children so you can claim 20% back off the cost of your treatment from Revenue.