Back to School with Braces

Getting ready for the start of the new school year is a completely different experience when your child got braces over the summer break. Not only do you have to worry about purchasing all those school supplies and new clothing, but you have to make sure your child is properly prepared for how to care for their braces while at school.
There are a number of changes that occur in your child’s daily routine when they are wearing braces. There is a new oral hygiene routine that must be followed, some foods need to be avoided, and new problems can arise. All these changes can make your child feel stressed about returning to school. Luckily, there are things you can do to help them feel more comfortable returning to school with braces.
The following are some easy-to-follow tips that will help make sure your child is ready to return to school after getting their new braces on.
Pack a Braces Care Kit for School
Your child’s orthodontist or dentist will give you a braces care kit for home, but it might be a good idea to purchase an additional kit that can be kept in your child’s backpack. This additional kit contains everything your child needs to handle any emergency situation that may occur while wearing braces.
If you don’t want to purchase a pre-made braces care kit, you can make your own. Items to include in the kit include:

  • Toothpaste
  • Toothbrush
  • Dental Wax
  • Dental Floss
  • Lip Balm

Encourage Your Child to Drink More Water
Drinking lots of water while you’re wearing braces can prove extremely helpful. It will keep your mouth hydrated which will prevent your gums and cheeks from getting irritated while also helping to remove any food or bacteria that may build up in your mouth.
Encourage your child to drink more water by having them pack a water bottle for school. This allows them to keep water nearby and always have access to it.
Another reason to encourage your child to drink more water is to help remove any excess sugar that may have built up in their mouths while at school. It would be ideal if your child could avoid sugary snacks and drinks while at school, but that is unrealistic. If you provide a water bottle for your child, your child can enjoy these types of snacks – within reason – and then quickly rinse their mouth with water. This will neutralize the sugars and prevent staining and other dental problems from occurring.
Provide Your Child with a Small Mirror
Keeping a small mirror nearby will help your child avoid walking around all day with food stuck in their braces. After lunch or a snack, your child can quickly check their braces in the mirror – which can be hung in their locker or kept in their backpack – to see if any food has gotten stuck.
Make Sure Your Child has a Customized Mouthguard
A customized mouthguard is a “must have” for children returning to school who have braces. The mouthguard will protect the teeth and gums from serious damage that can occur during recess, gym class, or afterschool sports. In addition to protecting the teeth and gums, these mouthguards will protect the braces, wires, and brackets from damage.
Don’t just purchase any old mouthguard from the store. Make sure you purchase a customized mouthguard that is specifically designed to be worn with braces. If you purchase a regular mouthguard, your child will go through a lot of pain and the braces could become damaged as the mouthguard doesn’t fit properly.
Talk with a Pediatric Dentist to see how you can prepare your child for the new school year.
Call Pediatric Dentistry of Central Florida to schedule an appointment with one of our pediatric dentists. Our pediatric dentists will be willing to answer any questions you or your child may have about how to care for braces when returning to school. Our pediatric dentists may have tips and tricks that will make it easier for your child to return to school while wearing braces. Call now to schedule an appointment!