Although they are rare, orthodontic emergencies do occur and can be extremely serious. Dr. Hoffman and his team of trained orthodontic specialists are here to ensure your complete health, safety and peace of mind. We understand that an orthodontic emergency can be a traumatic experience, but if it happens to you, just remain calm and follow these simple guidelines.
The Basics Of Orthodontic Emergencies
If you break or loosen any orthodontic appliances, be sure to call our office as soon as possible. It's important to call us before coming in to see us - by making the call first, you allow us to make any necessary preparations to ensure you'll be seen and treated as quickly as possible. Even if you have a regularly scheduled appointment, we still ask that you call us immediately if you need an appliance repaired.
Loose Brackets & Bands
Call our office immediately if a bracket or wire is loosened or damaged. Bracket and wire damage can be urgent, often requiring a re-fitting as soon as possible. In your call, we'll ask questions to thoroughly understand the situation and provide you with the best advice possible.
In rare instances, you may need to cut a wire while our office is closed. Although this should be considered a last resort, if this becomes necessary, you may cut the wire using a pair of fingernail clippers that have been washed and sterilized in alcohol. Please be sure to call our office as soon as possible after cutting the wire - we'll want to schedule you right away to mitigate any lasting effects on your treatment.
Discomfort from appliances in a variety of orthodontic treatments is relatively common. Usually it is mild and can be resolved with one of the following techniques:
- Cotton Swab: Try using a cotton swab to move the wire away from the irritated area. This may need to be done periodically.
- Eraser: Pencil erasers are also highly effective for moving wires.
- Dental Wax: If you don’t have it already, pick up some dental wax. A small piece of wax placed on a wire or bracket can make an incredible difference on an irritated mouth.
If the discomfort is extreme, you may, as detailed above, use a washed, sterilized pair of nail clippers to cut and remove the wire from your braces. If you find it necessary to do this, we again request that you call our office as soon as possible to resolve the issue.
Losing a separator during treatment is extremely common for orthodontic patients. There's no need to worry too much over a lost separator - just call our office to see if it needs to be replaced.
Discomfort with Orthodontic Treatment
Perhaps the most common side effect of orthodontic treatment is routine discomfort. This tends to take the form of pain, soreness, tenderness, or irritated gums and cheeks. If you experience discomfort during treatment, please understand that it is normal and should go away with time. Acetaminophen or other non-aspirin pain relievers can be effective treatments while adjusting to new braces or wires. Further, a warm washcloth or heating pad applied to the mouth or jaw can do wonders for pain. We know it hurts - but stay strong! In the end it's for a better, healthier smile.
Contact Your Local Newbury Park Orthodontist
If you are experiencing any of the problems described above, please feel free to contact our office. We’re always here for you - at Newbury Park Orthodontics, your safety and wellbeing is our primary concern.