Please note: If you have a traumatic injury or life-threatening condition, please dial 911 or visit an emergency room!
Braces are generally very safe. Occasionally, an orthodontic emergency arises. We try hard to be available to assist you if there is a problem. There is always an emergency number on the answering machine. We have listed some common problems and some possible ways to improve them. It is imperative that you let us know if you have a problem so that we can plan accordingly. Otherwise, injury can result or treatment could be delayed. You can PREVENT problems by avoiding hard and sticky foods.
When teeth move, they can become sore. This is normal and it usually lasts several days. Each person will have a different degree of soreness. We recommend that our patients take whatever they normally take for a headache. If the pain becomes severe or lasts for more than several days, please let us know.
We have provided you with wax for just this sort of problem. Attempt to dry the area first and then place wax on the irritating area. Another option is to pack the area with a piece of moist cotton. These ideas can help you adjust to an area or it may be a temporary solution until you are able to see us for a more permanent correction. If you are unable to see us, you may be able to cut the wire with fingernail cutters or bend it with a small object that is not sharp. Be careful; do not cause any more damage or pain.
Ulcers can arise anytime, but they are especially prevalent during times of stress. Braces can make ulcers even more uncomfortable. First, try applying wax to the area. If the problem persists, please contact us and we will recommend other solutions. Over the counter medication for ulcers are helpful, but only when applied as the ulcer is forming.
Broken bracket/loose band
Good news; if this is not causing discomfort, this is not an emergency. Please call us anyway so we can fix your appliances and properly schedule your next appointment. If you are experiencing discomfort and cannot come see us, attempt to remove the bracket by cutting the small rubber band that is holding the bracket to the wire (with fingernail cutters.) Remember, you need to call so we can prepare for your next appointment.
If an archwire breaks, please contact us. If you cannot come see us, determine if the wire will move and cause injury. If there is risk of discomfort, try to remove the wire by pulling it or by cutting it free with fingernail cutters. Please be careful when doing this.
If a separator should come out, please call our office prior to your next appointment. Separators create space and it should probably be replaced.
PLEASE DO NOT HESITATE TO CALL FOR ANY REASON. WE WANT TO MAKE THIS A GREAT EXPERIENCE FOR YOU! We hope you never need these instructions!
- Before you call please have the following information ready:
- We need your name and the patient’s name (if different)
- A complete description of the problem
- A description of any discomfort
- Any remedies you’ve tried or medications you’ve taken
- Emergency Contact Information
Please call the office at 804.282.0505 and the recording will give you the contact information for the team member on call.