For most people it can be difficult to use dental floss while wearing braces, the braces are part of society since many years ago. On the other hand, it can be said that dental floss is very popular and used by hundreds of thousands of people and there are different types for each person. To know which one you have to use, ask your doctor, here we only give you a reference with standard dental floss.
How to use Floss Threader
- Try using a floss threader. Sick of painstakingly flossing with your bare hands? A helpful tool called a floss threader can make it easier to get the floss behind your braces. The threader looks similar to a small plastic needle, and it can be used to floss.
- Thread a piece of floss into the eye of the threader. It’s the same way you would thread a sewing needle. Insert the plastic needle under the archwire of your braces and pull the floss through.
- Use the floss as you normally would. Now that it’s in position, grab the floss in your hands and floss down between the teeth. Pull the floss out and repeat it with the same threader. The threader is useful for making it easier to get the floss into the correct position without scraping up your fingers.
Be careful when you apply the pressure to get in between your teeth — go gently with a back and forth movement.
How to use waxed floss “floss ordinary”
1. Use waxed wire if possible.
When flossing with braces, it is important to remember that there are many metal pieces and corners to floss. Because of this, you will want to use a thin thread of wax when you can. Unwaxed and thread-like floss is much more likely to stick to your braces.
- The amount of dental floss you should use may vary slightly depending on the size of your mouth and hands. Most dental resources recommend a piece of approximately 12 – 18 inches (30 – 46 cm) long.
2. Thread the floss behind the brace wire.
Grab the floss with one hand a few inches behind one end. Carefully thread it under or over the main wire of your braces, taking care not to get it stuck. When it’s around the wire, pull it through so there’s enough slack on either end to grab it. A mirror can be a big help here.
- Be gentle. Do not pull on the brace wire with the floss — you’re just trying to get the floss behind it, not to “scrub” at the wire itself.
3. Push the floss between your teeth.
Grab one end of the floss in each hand. Wrap the ends around your index fingers for a tight grip. Adjust the floss so that it runs up the bottom of each index finger to the fingertip. Move one index finger inside your mouth and gently pull the floss so that it goes into the space between your teeth.
- If you’ve flossed before, this movement should feel natural. You basically want to move the floss into the “crease” between the teeth, then push it down into the gap. For some of your teeth, this will probably be a tight fit — this is normal.
4. Slide the floss up and down.
Now that the floss is in between your teeth, use your fingers to slide it up and down from the gums to the point where it’s difficult to keep moving it. Pull gently so that the floss rubs against the insides of both teeth. You want to “scrub” as much of this inner space as possible — try doing it five times against each surface.
- This scrubbing motion may seem like it’s not “doing” anything, but it is. Flossing isn’t just for removing bits of food that get stuck — it’s also important for removing plaque, an invisible film of bacteria that can cause decay, pain, and discoloration if it’s not dealt with.
5. Carefully pull the floss out.
Grab one end of the floss and gently pull until it comes free, taking care not to catch it on your braces. Congratulations — you’ve just flossed between one set of teeth!
6. Repeat for each tooth until finished.
Go down each row of teeth and carefully thread the floss between every set of teeth all the way to your furthest-back molars. When you have “scrubbed” with every set of teeth on the top and bottom of your mouth, you’re done.
- Take your time. Flossing properly when you have braces can take up to three times longer than a normal flossing session, but it’s especially important to floss when you’re wearing orthodontic devices because these devices can get in the way of cleaning with a brush alone.
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