True orthodontic emergencies are very rare. However, minor problems like loose brackets are more common. The number of breakages will be significantly reduced if you follow the advice of avoiding biting into hard or sticky foods.
What to Do in Case of Emergency
Please call our office at (905) 884-4161 as soon as you are aware of any broken or loose appliances, even if you have a regular appointment scheduled. This will allow us to create the appropriate time to see you.
Loose Brackets or Bands
Ideally, a bracket or band should be refitted as promptly as possible. You may need to cut the wire or slide the bracket or band off the wire. Should you need to cut the wire in case of an emergency, you may use fingernail clippers washed and/or sterilized in alcohol. Please also notify our office so that we may schedule an appointment as soon as possible.
Irritations from the end of the orthodontic wire will either involve the lining of the lips, the cheeks, or the gums. If possible, the wire should be bent away from the affected area with a cotton swab or eraser. Should the irritation continue and it is painful, you may attempt to cut the wire with nail clippers that have been washed and/or sterilized in alcohol.
Should you lose a separator during treatment, kindly notify our office so that you may be advised accordingly.
Discomfort with Orthodontic Treatment
Orthodontic tooth movement may result in some discomfort. This can usually be managed with a similar pain medication that you take to reduce discomfort from a headache. In addition, staying away from foods that are difficult to chew may reduce aggravating the discomfort. This usually resolves after a few days and will not necessarily occur following each visit.
Accidents Involving the Teeth
Should an accident involving the teeth occur during treatment, you should call your dentist or orthodontist immediately. Additional information can be found at the Canadian Association of Orthodontics.