Swollen gums are actually one of the most common things happen because of braces, but in most cases, a few habit changes and proper cleaning techniques can alleviate the irritation that cause swollen gums. Ceramic or metal brackets cemented to your teeth and threaded with wires make thorough toothbrushing a bit more challenging than it used to be. However, cleaning your teeth to remove bacteria is still as important as it’s always been, because bacterial plaque can lead to gum inflammation, the first stages of which are red, bleeding, and swollen gums. Unfortunately, puberty hormones can also escalate gum disease in young orthodontic patients.
The best way to avoid swollen gums is by keeping your teeth and braces clean. We recommend the following:
- An electric toothbrush with a special orthodontic head or manual toothbrush for orthodontic treatment. Brush your teeth for 2 minutes, 2 times a day, or more if gums are really swollen.
- Use interproximal brushesand floss threader to clean under and around the wires.
- A water flosser such as waterpik that washes out food debris from the gums is also very helpful.
- Follow that up with a daily antimicrobial mouthwash like Listerine, and optionally mix a half teaspoon of salt with warm water and rinse your mouth with it to reduce inflammation.