Although there are very few true orthodontic emergencies, during the course of treatment, patients may discover that they have loose or broken brackets, or that the orthodontic wires may have shifted; thus, causing irritation of the lips or cheeks. Please contact us if you are having severe discomfort that you are not able to remedy on your own or in the event of a traumatic accident. We’ll be happy to set you up with an appointment so that we may resolve the problem.
Below, we have listed some common orthodontic issues and how they may be remedied at home, or until you can come into one of our offices for a repair.
Soreness from Braces
Soreness will occur off and on during orthodontic treatment. Rinse the mouth with warm salt water. Tylenol or Ibuprofen will also help. In addition, we recommend that patients try to stick to softer foods during this time.
Irritated Cheeks, Lips, or Tongue
Brackets may irritate soft tissues initially until the tissue toughens (as hands callous). Soft wax will ease the discomfort as does a warm salt water rinse.
If the bracket is attached to the wire, leave it in place and cover it with wax as needed for comfort. If the bracket comes out completely, place it in a sandwich bag or any other type of container so that you can bring it with you to your next appointment. Avoid connecting elastics or a headgear appliance to any looser brackets or bands. Please call our office to ask if an appointment is necessary.
Broken or Poking Wire
If a wire can be easily removed, remove the broken piece. If a wire slips out of its tube, replace the wire in the tube or under the tube hook with tweezers. If the wire still pokes, try to slide it over with your finger or put wax on it until we can see the patient in our office.
Use ice immediately to reduce swelling. If the teeth are displaced and don’t fit together properly, arch wires are bent, or soft tissue is stuck in the braces, please call our office immediately.