Although it is clearly forbidden, some folks simply cannot resist and eat gooey, chewy foods while in braces. Foods like caramel, toffee, taffy and twizzlers are hard to let go of, they are just so delicious. They are forbidden for good reason though. They will get caught in your braces and get in absolutely any and all little cracks, nooks and crannies, and you may find yourself absolutely unable to get them out. These yummy sticky food bits will start to decompose on your braces, which will be bad for both your enamel and the apparatus. The bacteria that aid in decomposition produce toxic and acidic by products which lead to a great big mess in your mouth.
But no one should be left with holes in their teeth just because they gave into a sweet temptation. That is why I am here to tell you that if you have some toffee stuck in your braces there are solutions, you just need the right set of tools.
You will need an intraoral toothbrush or an orthodontic toothbrush. These two differ from each other considerably, but the naming is a little bit off. For instance, there are orthodontic toothbrushes that look like intraoral toothbrushes, with little spindly brushes, looking something like this:
And then there are ones that look almost like a regular toothbrush with an indentation in the middle.
To get the sticky stuff out you will probably need the first type, one that can really get inside the braces. It is recommended to have both, though, as cleaning all of your teeth with the intraoral or spindly orthodontics toothbrush will take a long time. So start with the regular toothbrush with a cleft, then use the little brush for detail work.
It is important that you use the proper technique when removing gunk from your braces. If you push and pull too hard, you will remove the brackets or the wire. When using the spindly brush, go gently and slowly, as a hasty movement may loosen brackets or poke your gums. Your gums are likely to be a little bit inflamed during orthodontic treatment, so your gums may be larger or more sensitive than usual. Use small, slow movements when between brackets or between bracket and wire. Use floss, and the same advice applies.
When using the indented orthodontic toothbrush, make circular movements, with the longer bristles poking in towards the apparatus. Brush gently and slowly. The indented part should be on your enamel above or below the brackets, something like this:
After spending all that time removing the gunk to save your teeth, you may not feel the need to ever eat gooey foods again, so this works as a deterrent as well as an at home oral care method!