You will notice that it is much harder to keep your teeth clean with braces. Food compacts in the brackets and between your teeth, and it can only be removed by brushing and flossing. If plaque remains on the teeth for any length of time, it will leave a permanent white scar on the surface.
Brushing after meals should become part of your daily schedule. Brush after every meal. Use a soft toothbrush with a small amount of toothpaste and firm pressure and brush at a 45-degree angle to the tooth; brush in small circles above and below the brackets. Clean around the gumline for about 10 seconds on each tooth. Brush every tooth slowly. Brush the lower teeth up and the upper teeth down. Also brush your tongue and the roof of your mouth.
Your toothbrush will wear out faster because of your appliances, so be sure to replace it whenever the bristles start to fray. A Waterpik can be a useful addition, but it cannot remove the sticky plaque that adheres to the teeth. Interplak toothbrushes are great. Flossing is important and should be done everyday. The floss threaders are reusable.
Floss nightly after brushing to remove the plaque missed by brushing. Carefully pull waxed floss between wire and braces. Floss carefully around the braces and the gum area. Make sure that you floss around each and every tooth.