Orthodontic emergency cases

Loose or broken orthodontic braces:

01-Loose or broken orthodontic bracesYou may discover that you have loose or broken braces. This is usually caused by playing with your braces, or eating hard or sticky foods. This is generally not an emergency unless it is associated with pain or discomfort. 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, bring it with you to your next appointment. Avoid connecting elastics or a headgear appliance to any loose brackets. Call the office to schedule an appointment to repair the bracket. Be careful not to break too many brackets during your orthodontic treatment.

Long poking archwire

02-Long poking archwireSometimes as your teeth shift, the ends of the wire will start poking out the back of the molar tubes and irritate your cheeks. This problem may be resolved by moving the wire away from the irritated area using a cotton swab or pencil eraser. If the wire does not move, cover it with a small pea-sized amount of wax or cotton. You may also try cutting the wire with nail clippers that have been washed and sterilized in alcohol. Call the office for an appointment if you cannot resolve the problem.

Sores or ulcerations inside the mouth

03-Sores or ulcerations inside the mouthDuring the first week of treatment, you may notice sores or ulcerations inside your mouth. This can happen because your lips and cheeks are not yet used to rubbing against your orthodontic braces. Over time, your skin on the inside of your mouth will get tougher and you will not have sores anymore. To provide some relief for your lips and cheeks rubbing against your rough braces, you can place a small pea-sized amount of wax or cotton on the area of the braces that is causing the sore or ulceration. The sore should improve within a couple of days and completely heal within a week. If the sore or ulceration does not improve or gets worse, call your orthodontist to have it examined.

Poking metal tie

04-Poking metal tieDuring treatment, flexible wires may slip out of the bracket slots of the back teeth. This may be avoided by eating the appropriate foods recommended by your orthodontist. If the wire comes out of the tube, try placing the wire back in the tube using tweezers. If necessary, cover the loose wire with wax and call the office for an appointment.

Wire out of tube or slot:

05-Wire out of tube or slotOccasionally, metal wires are used to tie the archwire to the brackets or bands. Sometimes during eating or brushing, a metal tie can accidentally be twisted and start to irritate your lips or cheeks. You can try to poke the wire back into place by using the end of a pencil eraser. If that is not possible, you can place wax on the area causing the irritation until you can be seen by your orthodontist to have it fixed.

Lost elastic tie:

06-Lost elastic tieIf an elastic tie falls off, call your orthodontist’s office. Sometimes, you can wait until your next appointment to have it replaced. Other times, your orthodontist will want to see you for a quick visit to put the elastic tie back on.

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