True orthodontic emergencies are rare, but when they occur we are available to you. As a general rule, you should call our office when you experience severe pain or have a painful appliance problem you can't take care of yourself. We'll be able to schedule an appointment to resolve the problem.
You might be surprised to learn that you may be able to solve many problems yourself temporarily until you can get to our office.
During the first week after your braces are placed or routine adjustment, you may feel general soreness, pain, or discomfort. Stick to a soft diet until your teeth do not hurt to chew. Irritated gums and other sore spots may be relieved by rinsing your mouth with a warm salt water.
If the tenderness is severe, take Acetaminophen (Tylenol) or whatever you normally take for headache or similar pain. Aspirin, Ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil) and Naproxen Sodium (Naprosyn, Anaprox) have been shown to slow the tooth movement, so it is not advisable to use them frequently while wearing braces.
The lips, cheeks, and tongue may become irritated for one to two weeks as they become accustomed to the surface of the braces or appliance. You can put wax over the irritating areas to lession the discomfort.
Dentofacial Orthopedic Appliance
Some discomfort may be caused by pressure from the appliance during activation. The discomfort may last a few hours to a few days. Sometime pieces of the appliance may come loose, if it happens, please contact our office and BRING THE PIECES to your emergency appointment.
If your appliance is poking you, place wax on the offending part to temporarily relieve the discomfort. If the appliance is loose, please contact our office to have it recemented.
If your bracket or band is still attached to the wire, you should leave it in place and put wax on it if needed for comfort. If the bracket or band can be removed easily, place it in an envelope and save it to bring to your next appointment.
Using a pair of tweezers or needle-nosed pliers, try to put your wire back into place. It is okay to use a piece of floss to tie the wire into place: tie the floss around the bracket in place of the missing colored o-ring. If you cannot put the wire into a comfortable position, and covering the end with wax doesn't help, as a last resort use a small fingernail clipper to clip the wire behind the last tooth to which it is securely fastened. If the end of the wire is still sharp place wax on it.
Using a pencil eraser, push the poking wire down or place wax or softened sugarless gum on it so that it is no longer poking. If the wire is sticking out, you can cut it with a nail clipper or wire cutter that has been washed and sterilized in alcohol. If you cannot resolve the wire irritation, call our office for an appointment.