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Life With Braces

Welcome to our Life With Braces page!

Please bookmark this page so you can reference it later.

Here you will find information and Do's and Don'ts (such as "No Chips") that will come in handy during the course of your orthodontic treatment.

We also have 2 videos below which review everything we went over after you had your braces put on - including foods to avoid and how to take care of your teeth. You can watch these from the comfort of your home so please take the time to watch both of these videos.

Visit our MHO Amazon Storefront for our recommendations on oral health care products, electric toothbrushes, mouthrinses, and more the help you through your orthodontic journey with us!

Braces First Aid

You might be surprised to learn that you may be able to temporarily solve many Braces First Aid problems yourself until your next scheduled visit in our Longview office.

Especially if you live in Gilmer, Kilgore, Marshall, or even as far as Carthage, Mount Pleasant or Shreveport, there are a lot of things you can do at home to help alleviate any orthodontic issues which can help you get by until your next visit or until you are able to come into our Longview orthodontic office.

If there is a loose piece that you can remove, simply put it in a plastic bag or envelope and bring it with you to your next appointment. If your braces or other orthodontic appliances are poking you, put soft wax on the piece that's sticking out. If the wire has slid to one side, you can pull it back to the other side with needle-nosed pliers, replacing it in the tube on the back tooth.


General soreness

When you get your braces on, you may feel general soreness in your mouth, and teeth may be tender to biting pressures for three to five days. Stick to a soft diet until your teeth do not hurt to chew. Irritated gums and other sore spots can be relieved by rinsing your mouth with a warm salt-water mouthwash. Dissolve one teaspoonful of salt in eight ounces of warm water, and rinse your mouth vigorously. If the tenderness is severe, take Acetaminophen (Tylenol) or whatever you normally take for headache or similar pain.

The lips, cheeks, and tongue may become irritated for one to two weeks as they learn a new posture and become accustomed to the surface of the braces. You can put wax on the braces to lessen this. We'll show you how!

If your appliance is poking you, please place wax on the part that is bothering you.

Loose bracket

If your bracket or band is still attached to the wire, you should leave it in place and put wax on it if needed for comfort. If the bracket or band can be removed easily, save it to bring to your next visit.

Loose wire

Using a pair of tweezers or needle-nosed pliers, try to put your wire back into place. It is okay to use a piece of floss to tie the wire into place: tie the floss around the bracket in place of the missing colored o-ring. If you cannot put the wire into a comfortable position, and covering the end with wax doesn't help, as a last resort use a small fingernail clipper to clip the wire behind the last tooth to which it is securely fastened. If the end of the wire is still sharp place wax on it.

Poking wire

Using a pencil eraser, push the poking wire down or place wax on it so that it is no longer poking.

True emergencies at the orthodontist are quite rare, but when they do occur, we are here for you!! As a general rule, you should call or text our Longview office at 903-212-7737 if you encounter a situation you can't take care of on your own. Our scheduling coordinators will be able to get you set up for a visit to resolve the problem.

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