Patients wearing fixed orthodontic braces are almost three times as likely to suffer from some sort of dental ill than their counterparts without braces. This is partially due to the fact that orthodontic appliances have some negative characteristics that demineralize teeth, and may damage your enamel, but the other half of it is that patients just do not know how to properly care for teeth that are in braces.
The challenge is that you may not be able to reach all of the places where you were able to brush previously, and this will make the buildup of tartar and plaque all but inevitable. The other problem is that you may find that now there are more places that food can get caught in, and it is not possible to brush in the same way. There will be more nooks and crannies now that a large metal device has been glued to your teeth.
This is the reason they make and sell orthodontic toothbrushes. Because you should not inevitably have poorer oral hygiene, just because you have decided that you will be aligning your teeth with orthodontics. Orthodontic toothbrushes can be differentiated from regular toothbrushes in many ways, but basically there are two kinds of orthodontic toothbrush available (well, there are many kinds, but these two characteristics will help you find them). The first kind is a regular toothbrush but it has a huge indentation in it, shaped like an orthodontic bracket. These are a little bit harder to spot, as many toothbrushes now have longer and shorter bristles, but with this one, the middle section always has shorter bristle, and the indentation is kind of like a rounded square, bracket shaped.
The other one is basically a toothpick with bristles. This type of toothbrush can be inserted between the teeth and the appliance, because it is thin enough to go in there without breaking your appliance or hurting your teeth. But the bristles make sure that the food detritus that gets caught in the actual device gets removed quickly and efficiently. These are very easy to spot, and you may have been wondering what they were to begin with....