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Orthodontic Emergencies

Orthodontist in Saratoga, CA 95070

Soreness from Braces

It’s normal to have a little discomfort for a day or two after braces are put in or adjusted at future appointments. It’s not an emergency, but it can be uncomfortable, especially when trying to eat.

If something on your brace apparatus becomes loose or breaks, it’s most likely not an emergency and you can contact your orthodontist during normal business hours and explain the situation. In the meantime, you can find temporary solutions to common soreness from braces by attempting the following:

  1. Use an oral anesthetic. Orajel and Anbesol are pain relievers that can be applied directly to your teeth and gums. Use as directed. This will help desensitize the mouth and decrease the pain of shifting teeth.
  2. Take over the counter pain medication. Be proactive with this step as it will help ease any potential discomfort during the tightening process. Over-the-counter pain relievers like acetaminophen or ibuprofen can help but should be used as directed. It is not recommended to take pain pills regularly, however they can be beneficial when the pain cannot be subsided by other remedies.
  3. Use an Ice Pack. Apply the ice pack to the area of discomfort on the outside of your mouth as this will help eliminate inflammation thus easing the oral discomfort.
  4. Drink cold water and eat soft foods. Eating soft foods for a couple days may help. Soups, stews and macaroni and cheese are good choices. Ice cold water is also an affective and inexpensive way to ease discomfort after your braces have been tightened. The cold temperature provides a numbing sensation in the mouth and eliminates inflammation in the soreness in your gums
  5. Be patient. Remember the pain is temporary and it will subside in a few days.

Irritation of Lips and Cheeks from Braces

With braces, you have an appliance in your mouth that it simply isn’t used to. It may take a little time for your mouth, cheek, lips and tongue to get used to their new friend. To help alleviate some of the irritation, we will provide you with relief wax. Simply pinch off a small piece and roll it into a tiny ball. Flatten the ball and place it over the area of the braces that is causing the irritation. If the wax falls off, a piece of wet cotton wrapped around the offending attachment or even a small piece of orange peel can do the trick. You’ll be able to eat better, talk better, and feel better just by having a little buffer between your braces and your cheek or lip. If the irritation persists, though, contact us right away as you may need an adjustment. Should you accidentally swallow the wax, there is no need to worry as it’s non - toxic.

Orthodontist in Saratoga, CA 95070

Mouth Sores from Braces

With traditional braces, you might experience a few mouth sores. These sores may appear inside the cheeks, or on the lips or even on the tongue. These sores are common, and unfortunately may be uncomfortable.

Applying a topical anesthetic like Orajel or Anbesol will help you feel better, as well as help the sores heal. Use as directed.

Food Caught Between Teeth Behind Braces

Getting food stuck in between your teeth and behind your braces can be a little uncomfortable and even a little embarrassing. To repudiate this use a piece of dental floss. Tie a small knot in the middle of the floss to help remove the food. If you don’t have any floss, try an inter - proximal brush or pick, or even a regular toothpick. Always be gentle as to not hurt the gums or damage the braces.

What to Do if a Braces Bracket Ligature Band Comes Off

The ligature is the tiny rubber band that’s stretched around the bracket. Its job is to hold the wire to the bracket so the wire can deliver force to the teeth and move them. (Sometimes a twisted wire is used instead of a rubber ligature.) If your rubber ligature comes off, try to put it back in place with a sterile tweezers. If a wire ligature comes loose, just take it out with a sterile tweezers. If the wire ligature is sticking out into the lip but is not loose, you can try to bend it back with a Q-tip or pencil eraser. Be wary, though. If one ligature pops off or breaks, others may do so, as well. If ligatures continue to break, call us right away for a follow-up visit. You may need an adjustment to make sure those properly stay in place.

What to Do If Braces Brackets Come Loose

Brackets serve as handles to hold the wire of the braces in place. Brackets are generally bonded to the teeth with adhesive. They are tough, sturdy and stable. But if you eat hard, crunchy or sticky types of food, the brackets can indeed loosen. If you get hit in the mouth, this can also cause the brackets to loosen. Please ask us about wearing a mouth guard during any and all types of physical activity.

The best thing to do if a bracket breaks or comes loose is contact us. We will want to examine your mouth and decide the best course of action to fix the bracket. If you can’t get us right away, you can temporarily alleviate the discomfort and avoid further damage by using a sterile tweezers to slide the bracket along the wire until it’s between two teeth. Rotate the bracket back to the proper position then slide it back to the center of the tooth. Again, this is just a temporary fix until your next appointment, which should be as soon as possible.

What to Do If The Braces Wires Come Loose

The arch wire of braces fits in the horizontal slots in each bracket. The wire is secured to all of the brackets, and occasionally, simply by the act of biting and chewing, the end of a wire will work itself out and cause irritation. The best way to alleviate the discomfort is to push the wire back down. Use a Q-tip or pencil eraser to push the wire back so it’s flat against your tooth. If you can’t get the wire back to a comfortable position, cover it with relief wax to have a buffer between your braces and the area of your mouth that’s irritated. In an extremely bothersome situation, and as a last resort, clip the wire. Reduce the possibility of swallowing the snipped piece by putting a folded tissue or piece of gauze around the area. Use a sharp clippers and snip off the wire. Use relief wax if the area is still irritated. Make a follow-up appointment with us immediately to make sure the braces are still secure and to get a different wire if necessary.

Traumatic Injury

If you experience trauma to your face or mouth or feel emergency care is necessary, call our office immediately. Our emergency care answering service will contact our team right away.

In case of emergency call our office at 1-408-805-9198

Embrace Smiles
12280 Saratoga Sunnyvale Rd Suite 101 Saratoga CA 95070
1-408-805-9198 USD Cash, Check, MasterCard, Visa, American Express, Most Dental Insurance Plans
Cherissa Chong Doctor