While orthodontic emergencies are rare, they can happen, and we’re here to help. If you believe you are experiencing an orthodontic emergency, please take a few minutes to determine if your situation requires our immediate attention or if you can temporarily resolve it until your next appointment. Please review some of the most common orthodontic problems below.
Loose Brackets or Bands
If you feel like something is loose or broken and are concerned, please give us a call. Often times, broken brackets and bands can simply be fixed at your next regular appointment. The only reason to schedule an emergency visit would be if it were hurting or annoying you. Call our office if you have any concerns, and we can help identify the urgency of the situation and solution.
Irritation from Wires
As your teeth are shifting, your appliance may start to feel uncomfortable in certain areas and cause irritation. This is common and can be resolved a number of ways. First, try gently pushing the wire away from the irritated area with the head of an eraser. If this doesn’t seem to help, attach a small piece of dental wax or a cotton ball to the end of the wire. If the wire continues to bring pain, please give us a call. The solution can often be a DIY approach, by cutting the wire with a pair of finger nail clippers, or something similar. Of course, you are always welcome to come in to the office for assistance as well.
Separators may occasionally fall out. Although this may seem concerning, it’s not a big problem. This typically happens because the separator has made the appropriate space and is ready to come out. If this happens within a few days of your next appointment there should not be any issues with keeping that same appointment. If your next appointment is still more than a week away, please call the office for advice.
General Discomfort with Orthodontic Treatment
Following your initial treatment, you will likely experience discomfort, soreness or pain as your mouth adjusts to the new appliance or hardware. This is very common, and pain can be reduced with an over-the-counter pain reliever. Please follow the package directions when taking any medication and consult your physician if any issues or concerns arise. A warm towel placed on the mouth or rinsing the mouth with warm salt water can also help ease tenderness and reduce pain.