When Braces Break: Handling Orthodontic Emergencies with Ease

Oct 10, 2023 | Dental Tips

Orthodontic braces are a vital investment in sculpting a beautiful, aligned smile. Nevertheless, orthodontic emergencies like broken wires or brackets can occur. Knowing how to address these issues efficiently can alleviate discomfort and avert further complications. In this article, we aim to guide readers through managing common orthodontic emergencies and underscore the importance of timely professional intervention from an orthodontist.

Common Orthodontic Emergencies:

Broken Wire:
A common orthodontic mishap is a broken or protruding wire, potentially causing irritation to cheeks, lips, and tongue.

Loose Bracket:
Brackets may loosen due to consuming hard or sticky edibles or from an impact to the mouth.

Discomfort or Soreness:
Post-adjustment mild soreness is typical in orthodontic treatment, but severe or lingering pain warrants immediate attention.

Handling Orthodontic Emergencies at Home:

Discomfort or Soreness:
Mild soreness can be mitigated with over-the-counter analgesics, adhering to the prescribed dosage.
A warm saltwater rinse can comfort oral tissues.
Broken Wire:
Apply orthodontic wax to shield against irritation from a sharp wire.
In the absence of wax, use a pencil eraser to cautiously nudge the wire from sensitive regions.
Loose Bracket:
Orthodontic wax can temporarily stabilize a loose bracket still attached to the wire.
If a bracket detaches completely, secure it for your orthodontist’s evaluation.
When to Seek Orthodontic Assistance:
While home interventions offer temporary relief, certain situations necessitate immediate orthodontic attention:

Swallowed or Inhaled Braces Components:
If any brace part is accidentally ingested or inhaled, it’s imperative to seek immediate medical help.

Persistent Pain or Discomfort:
Report severe or ongoing pain to your orthodontist without delay.

Multiple Broken Components:
Refrain from DIY fixes for multiple breaks; instead, promptly arrange an emergency orthodontic consultation.

The Importance of Visiting the Orthodontist Promptly:
Quick communication with your orthodontist when issues arise guarantees professional resolution. Postponing care for orthodontic emergencies can extend discomfort and potentially lengthen overall treatment duration.

Efficiently managing orthodontic emergencies involves adept home care and recognizing when professional help is essential. Employing orthodontic wax, utilizing simple remedies for discomfort, and swiftly contacting your orthodontist for severe emergencies will enable you to navigate orthodontic hurdles confidently. At Gidel Family Dentistry, we’re committed to offering prompt support to our orthodontic patients. If you’re facing an orthodontic emergency or have concerns about your braces, reach out to us at 530-458-2101. Our proficient orthodontic team is dedicated to ensuring your treatment proceeds smoothly and comfortably, leading you toward the smile you’ve always desired.