Young woman smiling with white teeth

Orthodontic Emergency Guide

Serious orthodontic emergencies rarely happen, but in case of urgent issues, Seton Smiles is ready to help. For after-hour emergencies, simply call our office, leave your contact information and the details of your emergency. We will then make sure to get back to you as soon as possible.

For non-urgent orthodontic issues, you can refer to the information below that we have prepared for you.

Tooth pain and soreness caused by braces or aligners

A frequent problem is tooth pain for several days after the braces have been adjusted or you get aligners. This tends to make eating more difficult. One suggestion is to make sure soft foods are available. You can also take a non-prescription pain reliever, like you would for a headache, for the first couple days as needed. It takes a few days to a couple weeks for your mouth to get used to new braces or aligners.

Loose Brackets, Wires or Bands

Inconveniences during orthodontic treatment can happen, such as wires, bands, brackets or an elastic band coming loose. Please contact our Seton Smiles team as soon as possible so that we can arrange to check and repair your appliance in a timely manner. Be sure to save any parts and pieces that come off and bring it to the office with you.

As a temporary fix and to avoid discomfort, you can tuck in any loose wire with the help of the back of a spoon or the eraser end of a pencil.

Loose Teeth

Don’t be alarmed if your teeth feel loose at first. This is necessary so they can shift to their new proper positions. Once your teeth are in their final position, the bone will hold your teeth securely again. This is why your retainer is so important!

Irritation of Lips and Cheeks

Sometimes new braces can be irritating to the mouth. A small amount of orthodontic wax makes an excellent buffer between the braces and lips, cheek or tongue. Simply pinch off a small piece and roll it into a ball the size of a small pea. Flatten the ball and place it completely over the area of the braces causing irritation. If possible, dry off the area first as the wax will stick better. If you run out of orthodontic wax, you may be able to find it at most pharmacies and drug stores.

Storing Your Removable Appliance or Retainer Properly to Avoid Orthodontic Emergencies

A removable appliance or retainer is only safe in two places. In your mouth or in the retainer case provided by your orthodontic specialist. Never place them in a purse, pocket or anywhere else where they can be damaged. When eating out, be mindful of where you keep your appliance or retainer as it can get thrown out if placed in a tissue or napkin.

Orthodontics and Athletic Injuries

Special precautions must be taken if you’re an athlete, particularly if you play contact sports where there’s a risk of getting hit in the face. These include boxing, soccer, football, skiing, etc. A mouthguard, or more specifically, an orthodontic mouthguard, is a great way to protect your mouth against hits that cause broken brackets, bleeding gums, and even fractured teeth. Orthodontic mouthguards are different in that they provide a little more room than regular mouthguards while providing the same level of protection. Additionally, the extra width in the orthodontic mouthguard should fit comfortably while covering your braces, teeth, and gums. Our Seton Orthodontics clinical team is more than happy to help you find the right mouthguard for you, your sport and your appliance.

In the unfortunate event of a sports emergency, be sure to immediately check your mouth and orthodontic appliances to ensure nothing is broken. If you do notice any loose teeth or appliance damage, please contact Seton Orthodontics right away. In most cases, you can temporarily relieve the discomfort by applying wax or rinsing your mouth with warm saltwater.

Free Consultation
Direct Billing to Insurance
Affordable Payment Plans
Child-Friendly Office
Orthodontic Specialists

Make your dream smile a reality!

Your first consultation with us is completely free of charge and comes with no obligation. Don't have a referral from a dentist? No problem! We welcome new patients and will make you feel at home right away.

Book Appointment Contact Us