Orthodontic emergencies

Orthodontic emergencies

Once your orthodontic appliance has been fitted, it's very rare that anything can happen to it. Although brackets and archwires are small, they're tough, and not much can dislodge them.

However, on the odd occasion, this can happen and it's what we call an orthodontic emergency. Sometimes you can easily fix it yourself but other times you'll need our help. Just give us a call.

Here's a guide on what to do if you suffer from an orthodontic emergency. 

Poking wire

Using a pencil eraser, push the poking wire down or place orthodontic wax on it to alleviate the discomfort. 

Loose bracket or band

If your bracket or band is still attached to the wire, leave it in place and put wax on it. If the wire comes out entirely, place the bracket in a plastic bag and bring it in at your next visit. 

Loose wire

Using tweezers, try to move your wire back into place. If doing this and using wax does not 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 your discomfort continues, place wax on it and give us a call. 

Loose appliance

If your appliance is poking you, place wax on the offending part of your appliance and give us a call. 

General soreness

When you get your braces on, you may feel general soreness in your mouth, and your teeth may be tender when biting for three to five days. This can be relieved by rinsing your mouth with a warm salt water mouthwash. Dissolve one teaspoonful of salt in 8 ounces of warm water, and rinse your mouth vigorously. Placing Orabase or Orajel on the affected area may help as well. If the tenderness is severe, take aspirin or whatever you normally take for a headache or similar pain. 

The lips, cheeks, and tongue may also become irritated for one to two weeks as they toughen and become accustomed to the surface of the braces. You can put wax on the braces to lessen this. We’ll show you how. 

Call us

Remember, if any of the above issues happen to your braces, call and book an appointment with us at our Salinas clinic , even if you manage to fix the problem yourself. It's important for our orthodontists to check that your braces are still working as they should.

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