Daily oral hygiene in orthodontics

June 4, 2018 10:35 am

The control of oral biofilm (bacterial plaque) is one of the keys for the prevention of periodontal complications and for the success of orthodontic treatment. With the following guidelines you can maintain a good oral hygiene and therefore a successful orthodontic treatment.

Care of people who wear orthodontics:

  • Remove any elastics and removable parts.
  • Place the toothbrush at a 45-degree angle to the gum.
  • Apply a light pressure with the toothbrush cleaning the teeth one at a time, both on the internal and external surfaces.
  • Brush the chewing surfaces of the teeth and make sure to reach the last back teeth.
  • Brush smoothly, taking care not to break the brackets or wires.
  • The areas around the orthodontic appliances should be cleaned, first the top and then the lower area.
  • Brush from the gums to the edges including interdental spaces.
  • Interproximal brushes can also be used if there is sufficient space between the teeth to clean the brackets.
  • Use a mouthwash which has been specifically formulated for orthodontic wearers.
  • Avoid eating foods that contain a lot of sugar such as pastries and chocolates.
  • Avoid sticky foods such as chewing gum and sweets as these will adhere to the brackets and bands causing plaque retention.
  • Do not eat hard foods as these can potentially take off the brackets.
  • During the course of your treatment, do not use your incisors to cut fruit, carrots, pizza etc. To eat these foods it is recommended to cut them with your hands or cutlery into small pieces and chew them with your teeth very slowly. If this advice is not followed then the brackets will become detached and the treatment duration will increase considerably.


  1. Dersot JM Le contrôle de plaque, a élément essentiel du succès du traitement orthodontique. Orthod Fr. 2010; 81: 33-9.
  2. Pan American Health Organization. Methods and programs for the prevention of oral diseases. Geneva 2001. Series of technical reports 713.
  3. Proffit W. Orthodontics. Theory and practice (2 ed). Madrid: Editorial Mosby-Doyma Books. 1992; 294-5: 433-8.
  4. Viasis A. Orthodontic Atlas. Principles and clinical applications. Buenos Aires: Editorial Panamericana Medical. 1995; 26-66: 199-211.
  5. Nutritional recommendations

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