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Same-Day Starts, Braces, and Consultations Available!

Your Top-Rated Orthodontist in
Charleston, SC, For Braces & Invisalign

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Braces can be left alone to their job of straightening your teeth (or your child’s teeth). However, they cannot be left to their own cleaning devices. Improperly brushing them can make their job more difficult due to a buildup of bacteria that leads to plaque and, eventually, decay.

The best way to treat this problem is to prevent it. Continue reading for a guide on brushing with braces for you or your child, including how your brushing routine should change to accommodate your appliance and any additional tips for keeping everything clean.

Want to find out if you or your child needs braces? Visit Reese Orthodontics in Charleston, SC for leading orthodontic care.

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Why Brushing with Braces is Important

Since your teeth are partially covered during treatment, some patients (mostly children) feel they don’t have to brush as well while they wear braces. The reality is that teeth are more susceptible to oral health issues with braces, not less.

This is because braces offer bacteria and particles of food more opportunities to get stuck and grow between the nooks and crannies of the archwire and brackets. Without being cleaned, these particles develop into plaque and dental calculus, which can wreak havoc on teeth.

Sugars and bacteria can work their way under brackets and between teeth to start forming cavities, which are harder to treat while wearing braces. However, if left alone, these cavities can worsen until tooth pain or decay begin to occur.

This erodes the teeth’ bones and leads to periodontal disease, which affects the gums and tissues that support them. If left untreated, bacteria can get in your blood from the decaying teeth and cause other problems, such as inflamed arteries or blood clots, leading to heart attacks.

If you feel tooth pain, speak with your provider. If they suspect that you have cavities or tooth decay, you may need to have your braces temporarily removed to be examined and cleaned by a dental professional.

Remember that you should never let the problem persist until the end of your treatment, at which point the problem could be far more severe (and costly).

How to Brush Properly with Braces

All this means that you need to know how to brush properly with braces to prevent these problems. You should still brush 2-3 times daily for at least 2 minutes and floss at least once daily with braces. However, your technique should change to clean your appliance more effectively.

Start by rinsing your mouth with water, which will help dislodge any food trapped in your braces. Next, brush at a 45-degree angle, which means the bristles should be angled up into your gums on top and down into the gums on the bottom. Then, brush at an angle over the brackets to flush out anything trapped behind them.

Remember to angle your toothbrush up and down to get behind the wire and brackets. Your goal is to get to the gumline of each tooth on the front and back to ensure that nothing is trapped there. This will not only clean your braces but reduce gum inflammation as well.

How to Floss Properly with Braces

Flossing should also change to accommodate your braces. Your orthodontist should provide you with a floss threader, which is a looped wire that allows you to pass floss under the wire so you can get to the gums. Remember to floss each tooth on either side of the gum, addressing all surfaces.

Additionally, you can buy a Waterpik or similar device to help flush out bacteria and food around your braces. These devices make a great addition to your brushing and flossing routines but should not replace them.

Consider using an anti-cavity mouthwash before flossing to enhance its benefits. Alternatively, you can also pour a little mouthwash into the Waterpik. When it mixes with water, it can help you control bacteria better than water alone.

If you have more questions about brushing or flossing with your new braces. They can help you or your child understand how to keep your braces clean as well as give you the tools you need to stop oral health issues before they happen.

Choose Reese Orthodontics

If you’re an adult who is considering braces, you need professional advice on your treatment and payment options. For orthodontic treatments in Charleston, SC, Reese Orthodontics offers the latest technology and treatment plans. Our advanced and comfortable orthodontic treatments can be customized to suit your needs. A consultation with Reese Orthodontics includes scans, a comprehensive exam, and a conversation with the orthodontist to discover which treatment options are right for you.

Schedule an appointment with us today to stay ahead of your oral health and receive the best possible treatment in your area.

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Easy Ways To Get Started

If you want to learn more about our orthodontic practice - where we offer extensive experience with a Board Certified Orthodontist, where we offer a satisfaction guarantee, and where we offer flexible payment options - Reese Orthodontics is here to serve you.

"Dr. Reese and staff share an inviting personality with a clean and professional atmosphere. I am very happy with the service, the product and the final result. I would encourage any of my friends and family to consult with Dr. Reese around their Orthodontic needs."
- Austin H.
"It has been a great experience all around getting braces at Dr. Reese Orthodontics. It's a great office with wonderful and friendly staff. I am extremely happy with the results. Can't say enough good things about Dr. Reese and his staff. I highly recommend him!"
- Nicole S.
"Dr. Reese and his staff was referred to me by a friend, and I highly recommend them! They were friendly, professional, helpful and quick to respond. I could not be happier with the results of Invisalign. I wore them about 7 months and my teeth are as straight as can be. Thank you for the great care and results!"
- Dancy E.
"I chose the absolute perfect orthodontist to perfect my smile. Dr. Reese has a personality that calms you and removes the anxiety that may come with the process. Dr. Reese is a true artist. I am so excited with my new smile. Dr. Reese accomplished the goals I was looking for and I am forever grateful. Thank you Dr. Reese!!!"
- Melanie C.
"Just awesome! Dr. Reese is the one to go to. He knows what he's doing and is great at what he does. Makes you feel like family every time you go visit. I can't get over how great my smile looks now. Definitely recommended."
- Harsha P.
*The reviews listed are from actual patients of Reese Orthodontics.
Individual results may vary. Reviews are not claimed to represent results for everyone.
click here to read reese orthodontic reviews
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reese orthodontics west ashley sc

Our Charleston
Orthodontic Office

2057 Charlie Hall Blvd. STE D
Charleston, SC 29414


Office Hours:

Monday - Thursday: 8:00AM - 5:00PM

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Dr. Reese McElveen, our award-winning orthodontist in Charleston, South Carolina has transformed the smiles of over 11,000 patients. Reese Orthodontics offers the most advanced orthodontic care for children and adults. Types of braces and orthodontic treatment include metal braces, clear braces, gold braces, Invisalign, Invisalign Teen, Damon Braces, SureSmile. Dr. Reese can even help you achieve your confident smile faster with AcceleDent.

Call 843.573.7279 today to schedule your appointment with our board certified orthodontist in Charleston, SC, at our conveniently located Charleston orthodontic office. Come experience Reese Orthodontics and you will see for yourself that we offer innovative and effective orthodontic care in Charleston, Downtown Charleston, West Ashley, James Island, Mount Pleasant, North Charleston, Johns Island, Goose Creek, Hanahan and Ladson, South Carolina (SC).