You probably will not experience a true orthodontic emergency because they are rare. However, we wanted to outfit you with the knowledge to treat the most common orthodontic issues at home until we can see you at the office.
Standard Orthodontic Issues
Most issues you encounter thankfully do not pose an immediate threat to your physical or oral health but need to be addressed possibly sooner than your next regularly scheduled appointment.
Dr. Johnson will check before the end of your first and regularly scheduled visits to make sure no wires are poking or irritating your gums. However, as teeth move, there can be excess wire causing it to poke the inside of your mouth.
A wire that is poking your gums is typically a problem you can fix on your own, without having to schedule an additional appointment.
The first thing to try is to apply wax to the piece of wire that is sticking out. If you are out of wax, try a cotton ball. You can even sterilize a pair of nail clippers and trim the wire yourself.
Additionally, you can sanitize the eraser from a pencil and use the eraser to push the wire in a direction so that it is flush with your bracket and no longer poking your cheek.
If none of these methods help, or the wire is protruding to the point that it is cutting your skin, you should call us to schedule a visit to address the situation.
Broken or Loose Brackets or Bands
Eating hard or sticky foods, or playing with your braces, can break your bracket. This why the team at Johnson Orthodontics will emphasize that you need to avoid certain foods and habits while you wear braces.
If an accident occurs, it won’t be a major reason that your treatment time gets off track. You should call the our office to see if you need treatment before your next regularly scheduled appointment.
In the meantime, just leave the bracket where it is. If it’s uncomfortable, or if you have the temptation to play with it, cover it up with some wax.
A misplaced or broken set of aligners does not mean that you have to start over. Just make sure to contact us as soon as possible to order a set of replacement aligners if needed, as spending significant time without them will slow the treatment process. Any time you spend not wearing your aligners is time your treatment is not progressing.
Should you lose an aligner, first try the next week’s aligner. If next week’s aligner does not fit, please make sure to wear the previous week’s aligner to hold the tooth movement we have done while waiting for your replacement aligners.
Irritation/Ulcer in the Mouth
It is normal to experience some ulcerations inside of your lips or cheeks when you first get your braces on, or after an adjustment. Johnson Orthodontics will provide wax that you can place over brackets that may be irritating your mouth. You can also try over-the-counter anti-inflammatory medications, such as ibuprofen. However, if these grow larger or persist, then call our office. They will be able to give you more specific instructions on how to clean and care for the sore.
Call our office as soon as possible if you break or loosen any of your appliances. Please do not come directly to the office—by calling us, you will allow us to create a time to see you. Even if you have a regular appointment scheduled, call us immediately to notify us if you need an appliance repaired.
In the event of an orthodontic emergency, such as facial trauma or serious pain, please call or text Dr. Johnson at 440-367-8178.