Oral Hygiene

When it comes to your successful orthodontic treatment you are the most important member of the team at Renick Orthodontics. Our orthodontist, Dr. Michele Renick will talk more with you about how to live with braces or aligners at your appointment, and on this page you can learn how to care for your smile. If you have any questions about braces, aligners and oral hygiene in Sunbury and Galena, Ohio, call 740-936-5003 today.

Oral Hygiene

Our goal at Renick Orthodontics is to provide you with a healthy, functional smile. While you are wearing braces (as at any time), it is essential that you maintain good oral hygiene. Proper oral hygiene may be a bit more difficult with braces, but it is important that you take good care of your smile so you can prevent dental problems like tooth decay, gum disease and demineralization which can lead to permanent white scars on the teeth. If left untreated, these problems can cause more serious oral health issues and even prolong your orthodontic treatment.

To keep your smile healthy while you have braces, our orthodontist and team encourage you to follow these guidelines:

Brush your teeth
This should be done 2-3 times every day. Brushing after every meal is a good idea. If you eat a sugary snack in between meals, it is best to brush again. Electric toothbrushes have an added benefit if used correctly.

Use an interproximal proxy brush
(pipe cleaner /Christmas Tree brush)
This brush helps to clean around the brackets and wires. It can help to clean spots that your toothbrush might have a hard time reaching because of your braces.

This should be done at least once every day. A floss threader can make it easier to thread the floss behind the wire of your braces. Special pre-threaded orthodontic flossers called Platypus are also available online or at retail locations.

Fluoride Rinses
These are available either over the counter or by prescription. These are wonderful ways to help prevent decay, however, they do not take the place of brushing. Without brushing first to remove the plaque, the fluoride rinse cannot contact the teeth.

Water Piks and similar items
These are fantastic for removing gross food from around the braces but unfortunately will not remove plaque. In addition, for active gum disease, substituting a fluoride rinse or Listerine for the water can help reduce inflammation.

Avoid sugary and sticky foods
These types of foods will remain on your teeth longer and provide a bigger feeding ground for the bacteria that cause decay and gum disease


Our staff at Renick Orthodontics will provide detailed instructions on how to brush and floss with braces and aligners when you begin treatment. At each appointment, they will help you identify areas you may be missing or areas of concern which may be leading to gum disease, scarring or decay. We are happy to work with our patients to improve the hygiene so that we provide you with a healthy, beautiful smile at the end of treatment.

If you would like more information about how to maintain good oral hygiene with braces, we invite you to contact our office today. We are eager to speak with you!