New York Orthodontists recommend that you always have a dental kit that you carry around after you get your braces. It helps make the period with braces easier and helps you deal with common issues like getting things stuck in your teeth. Some of the things that can be put into a dental kit include:
- Toothbrush (we like Oral-B)
- Toothpaste (we like colgate)
- Dental floss and floss threaders
- Interdental picks (get these are any pharmacy or drug store)
- Dental wax (you’ll definitely want this in the first few weeks as you’re getting adjusted to your braces)
Other people like to recommend mirrors, tissues, and mouth wash, but we don’t think it’s absolutely necessary. A bottle of water might be nice to include in here if you are in an area where tap water is not drinkable.
You can stock everything in a plastic ziplock bag, but if you are going to be eating out in public a lot, we recommend that you buy a small black travel bag that you can carry around with you. Men – don’t worry! You can buy bags that look like little portfolios as opposed to man bags or murses.
Using this dental kit
Let’s face it, no one really wants to be seen with food stuck in their teeth. Braces compound the problem by making it really easy to get food stuck! If you’re eating with others, especially at work functions, try not to smile too widely and show your teeth. It could lead to embarrassment.
If you know you’re going to be eating out a lot, you need to develop stealth tactics to go to the restroom so that you can brush your teeth. No one really wants to run into people brushing their teeth, but really, does it matter that much?
It’s going to feel a little weird at first, but eventually it will become no big deal. There was an experiment run at a prominent university where test experiments walked into a room wearing a t-shirt that really stood out. They were asked to guess how many people noticed the weird shirt. Their guesses were far higher than the actual numbers.
The moral of this story is that no one will notice. As long as you do it quickly and discreetly, no one will notice. It’s better that you get the food out of your teeth sooner rather than later. Having the food in your mouth promotes bacteria growth that will at the minimum cause your breath to smell. If that wasn’t bad enough, foods high in sugar could promote the growth of bacteria that cause cavities which means more trips to the dentist!