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5 Things Your Teens are Forgetting to Do

5 Things Your Teens are Forgetting to Do With Their Braces
Posted on 05/27/2015

Getting braces is a big change for teenagers. Not only will their teeth be physically changing, but there are also several new oral hygiene rules and practices they need to follow. Between new dietary restrictions and increased brushing and flossing regimens, it can be hard to remember all the new rules that will protect your teen’s smile and prevent prolonged orthodontic treatment due to broken brackets and wires.


Here are 5 things your teen is most likely forgetting to do with their braces.

1. Forgetting to Use the Right Tools

Make sure your teenager has everything needed to keep his or her mouth healthy. Select an ADA approved soft-bristle toothbrush. You can also invest in bi-level toothbrushes made especially for braces. Floss, fluoride and good quality toothpaste are especially important to have on hand when dealing with braces.

2. Forgetting to Say No to Sticky Foods

Not only are sticky foods bad for your teeth due to increased sugar content, but sticky foods like chewy candy, fruit snacks, etc. also can pull your brackets and wires from your teeth. This leads to more orthodontist visits, increased expenses, and pain that could have been avoided. Lots of teens forget that sticky foods can be so bad for their braces, and gentle reminders can help them remember.

3. Forgetting to Steer Clear of Crunchy Foods, too

Chips, popcorn, and other crunchy foods can pry the brackets from their teeth. While hard and crunchy foods are the most responsible for breaking appliances, other bad habits like biting on pens or other objects can also damage your teen’s braces. Try to help your teen break these bad tooth habits to protect their braces.

4. Forgetting to Brush and Swish with Fluoride

With all the new hardware in their mouths, teens have an even harder challenge keeping cavities and decay away. Brushing with fluoride toothpaste and swishing with mouthwash that has fluoride in it is one way to keep tooth decay away. The fluoride can get into the hard-to-reach areas that are blocked by wires and brackets so your teenager’s braces don’t lead to extensive dental work as well.

5. Forgetting to Floss

Odds are your teen forgets to floss—it’s hard and time consuming. Be sure to gently remind them how important this is. It might seem impossible, but your teen can and should floss at least once a day. Using special flossing products such as floss threaders can help make flossing easier for your teen. These threaders make it extra easy to get the floss in between brace brackets.