Dealing with a Dental Emergency – Orthodontic Tips and Tools
Orthodontic emergencies are common due to the number of small components that make up traditional dental braces. In most cases, a mishap is more of an inconvenience than a true dental emergency, and you can usually remedy the problem at home. If you know what to do when a part of your appliance breaks or loosens, you’ll save time, and spare yourself from discomfort.
Following are the most common orthodontic issues:
- Food Stuck Between Teeth – Dislodge the food with an interproximal brush, toothpick, or a piece of dental floss with a knot tied in it.
- Mouth Sores and Irritation – The irritation from braces may contribute to mouth sores or make them more painful. Apply a benzocaine-based oral anesthetic to ulcerated areas using a sterile cotton swab, and reapply as often as needed. Discomfort after orthodontic adjustments is normal, but it can make it difficult to eat. Most emergency dentists encourage eating a soft diet and rinsing with warm, salty water. Take pain relievers if necessary. To prevent further irritation from braces, place a pea-sized amount of orthodontic relief wax over the painful area to create a buffer between soft tissue and metal parts.
- Knocked-Off Bracket – Eating crunchy foods or impact to the mouth can dislodge a bracket. If the bracket has rotated, center it between two adjacent teeth, rotate it into its normal position, and slide it back into place.
- Poking Wire – Push a protruding wire flat against your tooth with a cotton swab. If this is not possible, cover it with dental wax.
- Missing Ligature Wires or Bands – Replace rubber ligatures or remove loose wire ligatures with sterile tweezers. If a wire is sticking out and causing irritation, bend it back with a cotton swab. If you cannot find or replace a missing part, call your orthodontist to determine if you need to make an appointment.
- Loose Brackets, Bands, or Wires – Contact your orthodontist as soon as possible to discuss the appropriate treatment.
Keeping the following supplies on hand will help you stay fully prepared for most common orthodontic problems.
- Sharp, small clippers
- Benzocaine-based topical anesthetic
- Orthodontic relief wax
- Table salt
- Interproximal brush
- Cotton swabs
- Over-the-counter pain medications
- Tweezers (sterile)
To get the dental care you deserve from an affordable dentist in Mishawaka, call The Dental Center of Mishawaka today at (574) 285-0460 or make an appointment.
The Dental Center offers affordable family dentistry and gentle, compassionate dental care in Mishawaka. With 4 affiliated practices throughout Indiana, our offices are conveniently located with extended hours to meet your needs. At The Dental Center of Mishawaka, we provide most dental services, from basic preventative care and general dentistry to specialized procedures and complete dental reconstruction. We accept most dental insurance plans and offer affordable financial solutions for any budget. Patient satisfaction is our top priority and we strive to provide the exceptional, affordable dental care and personal touch that lead to lasting relationships. A smiling patient is our greatest reward and we look forward to keeping those smiles healthy, beautiful, and bright. Discover an affordable dentist who truly cares at The Dental Center of Mishawaka.