Blog Post

Should You Brush or Floss First?


Which came first, the chicken or the egg? No one can say for sure, but one thing we do know is that when it comes to brushing and flossing, there’s definitely one that should be done before the other. You may be surprised to know that according to studies, flossing should be your first step!

Floss First!

It has been proven that flossing before you brush is the best way to get your teeth thoroughly clean and remove the most plaque. Flossing before brushing also allows for better fluoride concentration from toothpaste, which helps make the enamel stronger and more resistant to decay.

Why is it Beneficial?

By flossing before brushing, you knock out food particles loose that are stuck in between your teeth. This allows for brushing to be more effective and makes sure that the particles that are cleared away by floss are thoroughly removed from your mouth. Flossing first also gives your toothbrush a chance to reach the surfaces of your teeth that were previously blocked by food particles that the floss removed.

Flossing with Braces

Flossing with braces is not difficult, but it is important. Try to remember these tips when getting used to flossing with braces.

  • Thread wax-covered floss through each gap and behind the wires of your braces.

  • Do not pull directly on the wire with the floss or you could damage or detach it.

  • Gently run floss between your teeth until you’ve reached all of them.

  • A Waterpik Flosser or floss threader might be easier to use than traditional floss with your braces.

Brushing with Braces

Brushing your teeth while you have braces is pretty much the same as it is without them! But our Smile Team thinks that a little Brushing 101 reminder never hurt anyone!

  • Try to remember these tips when brushing.

  • Always brush for at least 2 minutes.

  • Brush after every meal or snack. If you can’t immediately brush after you eat, at least rinse your mouth with water.

  • Use gentle pressure with a soft bristle toothbrush or electric toothbrush to avoid damage to your braces.

  • Replace your brush every 3 months (or sooner if your braces are causing it to wear out more quickly).

  • Use fluoride toothpaste to help protect against decay.

Help Us Help You

Our goal is to give you the most beautiful smile possible, but we can’t do it alone! Keeping your teeth clean and healthy is a responsibility that you have to keep up with every day. Follow the tips above and remember to floss before brushing to help Dr. Jolley give you the lifelong smile you’ve always wanted. Contact us at any time if you have questions.