Braces can be essential if you want straight and healthy teeth, but when your child goes to school all day, they have to take care of their braces on their own. With an increasing number of young children with braces, it’s even more important that they know what to do. To help out your child, give them the following tips.
1. Pack a Care Pack
To help your child take care of their braces at school, put together a care pack for them. Then, they have all the tools they need to follow through with the instructions below. A small make-up or pencil bag can work perfectly, or you may want to designate a pocket in their backpack for braces accessories.
2. Brush Regularly
Ideally, your child should brush after meals. If they have a travel size toothbrush and paste, they can head to the bathroom and brush with all the other kids who have braces. If brushing isn’t possible, at least give them some mouthwash and instruct them to rinse after every meal. This helps to remove the crumbs and debris. Otherwise, those elements can build up around the brackets and under the wires, leading to cavities.
3. Use Wax
With traditional wire braces, in particular, the brackets or wires can scrape the insides of your child’s mouth. Wax helps to soften the blow. Your child just needs to put a bit of wax over any parts of their braces that are rubbing against their mouth. You can get wax from your orthodontist or order it off the internet.
4. Don’t Forget the Lip Balm
When braces rub against your child’s lips, they can rub the skin dry, making them look cracked and feel uncomfortable. Wax isn’t ideal for this area, but lip balm is perfect. Buy some and keep your child stocked up. This is especially important in the winter months when the air tends to be drier.
5. Use a Bright Colored Retainer Case
If your child has a retainer or aligners such as Invisalign, they have to take those out to eat. However, when you slip retainers and aligners into napkins, they often get scraped into the garbage with the uneaten parts of the lunch, and they get damaged or dirty in pockets as well. To prevent that from happening, make sure that your child has a case for their retainers or aligners. Ideally, the case should be a bright color so that it’s easy to see. The case also helps to keep everything away from germs.
6. Give Your Child a Mirror
A mirror lets your child check up on the results of their brushing, but it can also help to safeguard your child’s confidence. While most younger children love braces becuase they make them feel cool and mature, many middle schoolers or older teens may feel embarrassed about their braces. Luckily, there are lots of discreet options that work perfectly for people in this age group, but a mirror also lets your child check easily for bits of food or other issues.
7. Pack Flossers
Finally, make sure to stick some flossers in your child’s pack. Show them how to use them, and then, after meals or when something is stuck in their teeth, your child can easily remove it.
To learn more, contact us directly. At Nia Pediatrics Dentistry, we provide pediatric dentistry and orthodontics in two convenient locations.