Just like any emergency, while we hope it doesn’t happen, we want to be prepared just in case it does. The same goes for an orthodontic emergency! Sometimes things happen unexpectedly—a wire or bracket breaks, there’s unusual pain, or a retainer gets lost. The key is to not panic, and take the following steps and precautions until you can get into the office to see your orthodontist!
Carry an “Ortho Kit”
Having a homemade kit with you to take care of your braces or aligners during orthodontic treatment is always a good idea. You need certain things with you for general upkeep of your oral health and hygiene, but you can also stock your kit with supplies in case of an ortho-emergency!
Here’s what to include:
- A mini-toothbrush
- Extra rubber bands (if you wear rubber bands)
- Ortho wax (for poking wires, etc.)
- OTC pain relievers (such as Tylenol)
- A braces-friendly snack
- Your orthodontist’s contact information
- Sugar-free gum
Take the necessary precautions
One of the best things to do in an ortho-emergency is to avoid it completely (if you can). This means caring for your teeth and mouth, steering clear of crunchy, sticky, and hard foods, wearing a mouthguard when playing sports, and keeping up with your aligners and retainers. By taking these simple steps, you are protecting your teeth and braces from possible damage.
Contact your orthodontist
If something goes wrong with your orthodontic appliances, give your orthodontist a call. Some issues, such as mild wire irritations or general discomfort, can be taken care of at home (see our instructions for emergency care here). However, if you have a more severe issue such as loose brackets or bands, an appointment might be necessary.
Regardless, if you have problems or concerns, it’s best to get in contact with your orthodontist so that they can assess the severity of the problem and make an appointment for you if needed.
If you have questions about orthodontics, give us a call or visit our website!