There are very few true orthodontic emergencies.  Most problems can be remedied at home.  However, if you have a situation that you cannot resolve on your own, call us as soon as possible, so we can fit you in for a repair appointment.  In the meantime, the following can help you resolve minor problems your may encounter during your orthodontic treatment.

Lost Separators

Most patients lose a separator during their orthodontic treatment. Do not worry about losing a separator, but call our office to see if it needs to be replaced.

You may try to replace the separator using two pieces of dental floss.

  • Thread the two pieces of dental floss through the center of the separator
  • Bend the dental floss at each end so as to allow yourself to stretch the separator
  • Slide the separator between the teeth
  • Make sure the upper section of the separator remains above the tooth
  • Remove the dental floss gently

Irritation in Mouth

Sometimes new braces can be irritating to the mouth, especially when the patient is eating. A small amount of non-medicinal relief wax makes an excellent buffer between metal and mouth. Simply pinch off a small piece and roll it into a ball the size of a small pea. Flatten the ball and place it completely over the area of the braces causing irritation.

The patient may then eat lunch more comfortably. If the wax is accidentally ingested it’s not a problem. The wax is harmless.

Protruding Wire

Occasionally the end of a wire will work itself out of place and irritate the patient’s mouth. Use a Q-tip or pencil eraser to push the wire so that it is flat against the tooth. If the wire cannot be moved into a comfortable position, cover it with relief wax. (See Irritation of Cheeks or Lips above for instructions on applying relief wax.).

In a situation where the wire is extremely bothersome and you are unable to see the orthodontist anytime soon, as a last resort, you may clip the wire.

Reduce the possibility of the student swallowing the snipped piece of wire by using folded tissue or gauze around the area. Use a pair of sharp clippers and snip off the protruding wire. Relief wax may still be necessary to provide comfort to the irritated area.

Loose Brackets

If a bracket comes loose, call our office to see if it needs to be re-fitted. Most of the time, we can wait a few days or even a few weeks before we need to replace the bracket. Sometimes, it might even be possible to wait until the next appointment; however, you need to call the office so that the proper arrangements can be made as soon as possible.