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The Ultimate Guide to Caring for Your Braces: Tips for a Healthy Smile

Are you or someone you know embarking on the journey of orthodontic treatment with braces? Congratulations on taking the first step toward a beautiful, healthy smile! While braces are an effective way to straighten teeth and correct bite issues, they require proper care and maintenance to ensure optimal results and oral health. In this guide, we'll cover everything you need to know about caring for your braces.

1. Follow Your Orthodontist's Instructions

First and foremost, listen to your orthodontist's advice. They are experts in their field and will provide you with specific instructions tailored to your needs. Follow their guidance on how often to wear rubber bands, how to clean your braces, and any dietary restrictions you should observe.

2. Practice Good Oral Hygiene

Maintaining excellent oral hygiene is crucial when you have braces. Food particles and plaque can easily get trapped in the brackets and wires, increasing the risk of cavities and gum disease. Here's how to keep your teeth and braces clean:

  • Brushing: Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste to brush your teeth after every meal and snack. Angle the brush to clean around the brackets and wires thoroughly.
  • Flossing: Flossing with braces can be tricky but essential. Use a floss threader or orthodontic floss to clean between your teeth and under the wires.
  • Rinsing: Rinse your mouth with water or an antimicrobial mouthwash to remove any remaining food particles and bacteria.

3. Be Mindful of Your Diet

Certain foods can damage your braces or prolong your treatment time. Avoid hard, sticky, or chewy foods that can bend wires or break brackets. Instead, opt for softer options like mashed potatoes, yogurt, and smoothies. Remember to cut fruits and vegetables into smaller, bite-sized pieces to prevent damage to your braces.

4. Protect Your Braces During Physical Activities

If you play sports or participate in activities where there's a risk of getting hit in the mouth, wear a mouthguard to protect your braces and teeth. Your orthodontist can recommend a suitable mouthguard that fits over your braces comfortably.

5. Attend Regular Orthodontic Appointments

Consistent follow-up appointments with your orthodontist are essential for monitoring your progress and making any necessary adjustments to your braces. Be sure to attend all scheduled appointments and communicate any concerns or issues you may have between visits.

6. Use Orthodontic Wax for Discomfort

During the initial stages of wearing braces and after adjustments, you may experience some discomfort or irritation from the brackets and wires rubbing against the inside of your mouth. Applying orthodontic wax to the areas causing irritation can provide relief and prevent further discomfort.

7. Stay Patient and Persistent

Orthodontic treatment with braces is a journey that requires patience and persistence. Remember that the end result – a straighter, healthier smile – will be well worth the effort. Stay committed to your oral hygiene routine, follow your orthodontist's instructions, and before you know it, you'll be flashing your beautiful new smile with confidence.


Caring for braces requires dedication and diligence, but the payoff is a smile that you'll be proud to show off for years to come. By following these tips and working closely with your orthodontist, you can ensure that your orthodontic treatment proceeds smoothly and efficiently. So, embrace the journey, and soon enough, you'll have a smile that lights up the room!

What patients are saying

“My daughter was very insecure about her teeth. She went from insecure to non-stop smiling in just a few months! For me that was just amazing! We love Mack & Hansen’s welcoming environment and their staff...always smiling, very helpful, energetic, and the most friendly in/out of the office. We Thank You All! I am FOREVER grateful for 'HER' smile!” ~ Sophia H. of Longview “My child actually looks forward to her orthodontist appointments!! The staff is always so friendly and it’s a positive, uplifting environment.” ~ Kara H. of Hallsville “I love the efficiency of Mack & Hansen Orthodontics. They have thought of everything when it comes to making a great customer impact. Not only are they skilled at making beautiful smiles, but they care about their patients. They are welcoming, up-to-date on technology, and really have hit the nail on great customer service! I would recommend them to anyone!” ~ Anita N. of Henderson “They have the absolute sweetest people working here! Every team member interacts with each patient. They show so much care for everyone and make you feel like family! I am so glad my braces experience has been with Mack & Hansen Orthodontics!” ~ Bonnie C. of Mount Pleasant “I love Mack & Hansen! Getting braces as an adult can be nerve racking, but this office has made my experience very comfortable! They offer great payment plans too. If you need anything they are very prompt with getting you seen or answering questions. Also, the new office is incredible and has an amazing mural painted outside.” ~ Alex M. of Kilgore “Absolutely the BEST orthodontists and office staff in town!  Always making sure we are taken care of and helping us on our smile journey!  Not to mention FUN!  Their ability to have fun makes it so much more enjoyable for their patients!” ~ Melissa H. of Marshall