Orthodontic Emergency & Repair Information

Screen Shot 2013-01-21 at 2.18.56 PMThere are very few orthodontic emergencies. In fact, many problems can be remedied at home.  It’s normal to have some problems with your braces, but just be prepared, so that you will know how to handle the situation if it occurs.

In the case of accidents involving the teeth, please call your family dentist or orthodontist immediately. Depending on severity, please call 911.

For any of the below, please call to notify our office so that we can address your needs. Prompt repairs will help ensure that treatment stays on schedule.

Some Common Orthodontic Problems & Solutions include:

  • Loose Bracket– The bracket comes loose from the tooth (very common). It usually stays attached to the wire but tends to roll around or move some. This usually isn’t an emergency, and can easily be rebounded at your next appointment. Applying a small piece of orthodontic wax on the loose bracket can temporarily hold it attached to the tooth, and protect the mouth tissues from being irritated.
  • Wire poking – Sometimes the wire slides around to one side and can cause discomfort in the back part of the mouth and cheek. This seems to occur in the earlier stages of treatment when the teeth are beginning to move and the wire straightens out. However, it can happen anytime. Usually the wire is clipped off or the wire slid back around into place with a simple adjustment.
  • Appliance Loose/Off– Sometimes your dental appliances may come loose from the tooth. If only one part or side is loose, it often just moves up and down, but can be re-cemented. Sometimes the appliance is damaged and needs repair or replacement.
  • Band Broken or Appliance Damaged– Orthodontic ligatures, bands or other attachments can become damaged and create an ulcer on the soft tissues of the cheek, lips or tongue.
  • Traumatic Injury– If the lips are traumatized into orthodontic hardware, they can become “stuck” in the braces. A gentile tug can free the lip. Otherwise, the dentist can free the tissue. Braces can actually protect the teeth in cases of major trauma, preventing teeth from being knocked out or more severely displaced.