Emergency Care

Emergencies are pretty rare, but we’ve put together a few pointers you can use to help yourself in a sticky situation. If you have questions please call our office for further advice on how to handle the situation.

For immediate relief, place wax or sugar-free gum right on the spot. If the back of a wire is poking into your cheek, get help cutting it with sterile nail clippers. If you are unable to make yourself comfortable call our office we will guide you in what to do next.

Brush the area with warm salt water AM and PM to help it heal. Follow that by rinsing. Repeat 4-6 times per glass of salt water. SOLUTION: Mix 1 teaspoon of salt and 6 ounces of water. TIP: Sea salt works best! You can also use wax or sugar-free gum if you have irritation on your cheek or lip. If after a week you see no improvement call us and we can figure out your next steps.

Remove the bracket if you can. If you can’t remove it this is not an emergency simply cover the bracket with orthodontic wax if it is causing you any discomfort otherwise leave it in place. Please bring any loose bracket or bands with you to your next visit we may be able to replace them. Call our office so we can determine if you can wait until your next visit or if we need to have you come in sooner.

This should not cause any pain and it is not considered an emergency. A little bit of orthodontic wax should hold it in place if needed or if you need to cut chain off use sterile nail clippers and that should do the trick.

Call our after-hours line and the doctor on call will help direct you to get the appropriate medical attention. In a case of a severe accident, please call your medical doctor or general dentist to get appropriate medical attention.

Utilize the most recent aligner that fits and wear it a few more days up to a week if needed. After a few days have passed retry next aligner, if fit of aligner has not improved call our office so that we can help you take the best next steps.

If you just started wearing the new aligner and you lost it, go back one aligner and call our office so we can reorder you the aligner that was lost. If you were close to being done with lost aligner, try on the next set of aligners and if they fit well continue wearing that aligner.

Continue to wear the current aligner and discard the attachment that fell off. Usually this causes no discomfort and you can continue to wear current aligner until your next visit. We will replace your attachment at your next visit.

There are only a few true orthodontic (or dental) emergencies. They include:

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

If any of these emergencies occur, you should seek help as soon as possible — contact your doctor or go to an emergency room.

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