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7 Ways to Sustaining Fresh Breath with Braces

author icon By Dr. Satish Pai

I love bad breath…said no one ever!

Wearing braces can lead to bad breath. The main cause of bad breath can be due to a buildup of bacteria in your mouth- especially if you have been slacking on keeping your teeth clean while having braces.

fresh breath with braces

Leaving food particles trapped in your mouth leads to them decaying which in turn leads to foul odor forming in your mouth.

But unfortunately, even when you wear braces, it is not enough to brush your teeth religiously as you may still suffer from bad breath. Braces make it a lot easier for food particles and bacteria to hide in the crevices in and around the braces brackets and wires which can only worsen if left unflushed, leading to bad odor.

What Causes Bad Breath While Having Braces?

The main cause of bad breath in your mouth is bacteria. It is easier for food particles to get stuck in your braces and the small spaces between your teeth.

If the food particles are left there, they become a source of food for the bacteria to feed on and give off a foul odor, especially if you don’t take care of your teeth properly. Major contributing factors for bad oral hygiene are drinking, smoking, gum disease and lack of a good dental routine.

Here are 7 tips to sustain fresh breath while wearing braces:

  1. Brush and Floss Often

    Follow a religious routine of brushing and flossing regularly. Brush your teeth after breakfast every morning and prior to going to bed. You can follow this up with a daily flossing to remove any food particles and buildup of plaque.

  2. Use Anti-Bacterial Mouthwash

    Always use an anti-bacterial mouthwash in your daily dental routine to help fight gingivitis, plaque, and bad breath.

  3. Stay Hydrated

    Dehydration is very bad for both your overall health as well as your oral health as it can increase the chances of bad breath greatly.

    This is due to the fact that a dry mouth does not allow the flow of saliva which is designed to help remove the stuck food particles and the bacteria that feeds on them as well. Drink a lot of water, roughly 1.5 liters every day throughout the day to keep your mouth constantly clean.

  4. Foods to Eat with Braces

    Avoid foods that have strong smelling ingredients such as garlic and onions. It is general knowledge that strong-smelling foods like garlic and onions give you bad breath so bear this in mind when deciding on foods to eat with braces.

    This one may be a tough habit but try to avoid sugary foods as much as possible as they lead to poor dental health which in turn leads to tooth decay and bad breath.

  5. Get a Water Pick

    Water picks are great for cleaning between your braces and gum line as their powerful jets of water are even more effective at cleaning than normal toothbrushes with the added advantage of leaving your mouth clean and fresh.

  6. Breath Mints

    If you've established a proper dental health routine but you still feel self-conscious about having bad breath, then you can get over this temporarily with the help of mouth fresheners or breath mints.

  7. Schedule Regular Orthodontic Visits

    Scheduling routine dental cleanings and orthodontic examinations is vital when you have braces. Scheduling regular dental visits will help you keep any tooth and gum problems at bay as well as to rectify any oral health issues that may be contributing to bad breath or affecting your braces.

The above 7 tips may seem to appear like a mammoth task at the moment but will become a gradual healthy practice over time. Another factor is that most of these 7 tips will help you while wearing braces and will continue benefiting you after your braces come off.

You can make life easier for yourself by carrying your dental kit which comprises of toothpaste, toothbrush, mouthwash, and floss to keep your mouth completely germ free and fresh. Make sure to keep on visiting your orthodontist on a regular basis to keep your mouth fresh and germ-free.

Author Bio:

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Dr. Satish Pai - an Ivy League trained dentist and a faculty at Columbia University, believes that a perfect smile not only makes a person look great but feel great while boosting confidence. As the founder of Putnam Orthodontics, he is dedicated to not only creating perfect smiles for his patients but also educating people with his engaging articles about all things related to a perfect smile and oral health. Spending time with his family always brings a smile on his face. In his free time, you can find him golfing, doing yoga or surfing.

Last review and update: February 2019

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