orthodontic-emergenciesAt The Village Orthodontist, patient care is our number one priority and we want to ensure your orthodontic journey is as smooth as possible. Major emergencies with your braces and other orthodontic appliances are rare, but sometimes brackets can break and wires may become loose, so we want you to be as prepared as possible. 

Below, we’ve outlined a couple of common orthodontic emergencies and what to do during each. When you have a problem with your braces that you don’t know how to solve, just contact us and we’ll tell you what to do.

What is a True Orthodontic Emergency?

It’s important to know what classifies as an emergency. To help you determine if you are having a true orthodontic emergency, ask yourself these simple questions:

  1. "Am I experiencing severe, unmanageable discomfort or pain?”

  2. “Do I have infection or swelling of my gums, mouth, or face?”

If you answer yes to either of these questions, you are having an emergency and need treatment fast. Head to the nearest emergency room for treatment if that’s your best option or contact your family dentist. Once you’ve had the treatment you need, we can make adjustments to your orthodontic treatment if necessary.

If you ate something you shouldn’t have and it’s stuck all over your braces or you don’t have any more elastics to use on your braces, it’s fine to call us for the help you need, but you can relax knowing that your problem is considered minor. Please read the information below so you know what to do if you experience any of the most common problems with braces.

Sore Teeth & General Discomfort

Right after you get your braces on and following your adjustment appointments, you can expect to feel some soreness. To alleviate this discomfort, you can take a non-aspirin pain reliever and gargle with lukewarm salt water which is a mixture of one teaspoon of salt dissolved in either ounces of water. You can also get the relief you need by applying a heating pad or warm washcloth to the area on your face where you feel sore.

Wire Irritations

If a wire is irritating the inside of your cheeks or gums, try moving it away from the area using a cotton swab or pencil eraser. If that doesn’t work, put a piece of orthodontic wax over the irritating end of the wire. If need be, you can clip the end of wire off using nail clippers or scissors that have been washed and sterilized in alcohol.

Loose Brackets

If a bracket loosens, call our office to find out if it needs to be re-fitted. If you need to cut a wire or slide a bracket off the wire, use clean and sterile fingernail clippers. Then call us the next business day so we can set up a repair appointment.

Loose Wires

If an archwire loosens, try to put it back in place using clean and sterilized tweezers. If that doesn’t work, put some orthodontic wax over the wire where it’s poking you. If you need to cut an archwire, use clean and sterilized nail clippers and clip the wire off behind the last bracket it’s secured to.

Contact Us Today With Any Questions!

The team at The Village Orthodontist is always here to help you solve any problems you may run into with your appliances. If you have any questions or need to schedule an appointment at our Frederick office, please call us at (301) 874-4747. We’re proud to offer comprehensive orthodontic care to offer orthodontic care to patients in Frederick County, including Urbana, Thurmont, Mt. Airy, Clarksburg, and Libertytown. We look forward to hearing from you soon!