What is an orthodontic emergency?

What is an orthodontic emergency?
Posted on 12/13/2022

Fortunately, the vast majorities of orthodontic problems are minor but may still cause discomfort or irritation. If you think you may have an orthodontic emergency however, the first step is to determine the severity of the problem. Is it an urgent situation that requires immediate attention, or a minor problem that you can take care of yourself, temporarily, until you can come in to our office? Let’s explore the difference.


A Major Emergency

There are a few situations where you should seek care immediately, whether you are in braces or not:

  • Trauma or injury to the teeth, face or mouth
  • Infection or swelling to the gums, mouth or face
  • Severe, unmanageable discomfort or pain in these areas

If any of these occur you may need to go to the emergency room but generally, the place to start is with your regular dentist. They are trained for variety of traumas and can offer treatment if necessary or help guide you to a specialist when appropriate.

Some Minor Troubles

Here are a few of the more common orthodontic problems and some tips on how to relieve them at home:

  • Broken brackets, bands or wires are typically caused by eating hard or sticky candy or food. If the bracket or band is still attached to the arch wire, leave it alone but don’t connect any elastic’s to it! You can cover it with orthodontic wax if it’s irritating the inside of your mouth.
  • Poking or broken arch wires can definitely cause some discomfort. Place orthodontic wax over the end of the wire that is sharp for immediate relief. Also, you can try to moving the wire with a pencil eraser or Q-tip into a better position.

In any case, give us a call at 281-485-6003 and we will schedule a visit to access the situation and get you back in tip top shape!

  • Pearland Office - 2015 E. Broadway St., Suite A, Pearland, TX 77581 Phone: 281-485-6003 Fax: 281-485-3376
  • Manvel Office - 19433 Highway 6, Suite 130, Manvel, TX 77578 Phone: 281-485-6004 Fax: 281-485-3376

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