How Do I Handle Orthodontic Emergencies?

At Manhattan Family Orthodontics, we know the thought of orthodontic emergencies can seem overwhelming. But rest assured, most issues are minor and can be handled comfortably from home. It’s crucial, however, to understand which situations are mere inconveniences and which are urgent emergencies requiring immediate professional attention. Let’s explore how to properly handle orthodontic emergencies.

What to Know About Orthodontic Emergencies

Orthodontic Emergencies can sound scary, but they’re not as common as you might think! Most of the time, the discomfort you feel with braces or other orthodontic appliances can be remedied easily.

However, it’s very important to know when you might need urgent care. True orthodontic emergencies include:

  • Injuries to your mouth or face.
  • Severe pain that doesn’t go away.
  • Signs of infection like swelling or fever.

If you experience any of these, it’s time to reach out to our office right away. 

Typical Orthodontic Emergencies

Even with the best care, sometimes things go a bit off track with your braces or aligners. Don’t worry, though! Many issues are more common and can be sorted out quickly. Here are a few you might come across:

Poking Wires: Sometimes, a wire might start poking your cheek or gums, which can be uncomfortable and annoying. To temporarily relieve the issue, use a bit of dental wax to cover the end of the wire until you come to see us.

Loose or Broken Braces: Brackets and wires are built to be tough, but they can get loose or even break. If this happens, keep calm and give our office a call. We’ll go over your situation and tell you the best next steps to keep your treatment on track. 

Soreness or Discomfort: Feeling a bit of discomfort, especially after an adjustment, is totally normal. Using over-the-counter pain relievers and enjoying some softer food can help ease the soreness. But if the discomfort persists, it’s time to check in with us to make sure everything is running smoothly.

Lost Aligners: If you’re on an Invisalign journey and misplace an aligner tray, contact us immediately to come in for a replacement. We’ll guide you on what to do next so your smile doesn’t hit a bump.

Allergic Reactions: Rarely, some patients might discover they’re allergic to metal braces or the nickel in stainless steel. Signs can include excessive swelling or rashes around the mouth. If you notice these signs, let us know immediately for directions on alternatives.

Swollen Gums or Infections: Braces can make cleaning a bit tricky, leading to swollen gum or even infections. Good oral hygiene and regular check-ups are key to reducing these issues.

Accidental Bites or Trauma: Sports, rough play, or just a simple slip can lead to a bite, break, or trauma to your mouth and appliance. While you should always protect your appliances with a mouthguard or other protective measures, accidents can still happen. 

Depending on your incident, immediate attention might be required to make sure there’s no damage to your braces or teeth.

At Manhattan Family Orthodontics, we’re always here to help keep your path to a perfect smile smooth and comfortable. If you’re ever in doubt or discomfort, give us a call.

How Do I Handle Orthodontic Emergencies?

Avoiding Orthodontic Emergencies

Keeping your orthodontic journey smooth and emergency-free is all about the little things you do daily. Let’s dive into some tips we recommend for a healthy, happy smile.

Brush Like A Pro

Your first line of defense? Good oral hygiene! Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and fluoride toothpaste to clean around your smile and appliance gently. Don’t forget to brush for at least two minutes after each meal. 

Also, flossing isn’t optional – it’s a must! Floss threaders can help get between your wires and teeth to clean out any remaining debris. Throw in some mouthwash, and you’ll have a squeaky-clean smile.

Smart Eating With An Appliance

Hard, sticky, or sugary foods and drinks are a no-go. They can break brackets or bend wires, leading to unplanned visits to Manhattan Family Orthodontics. We recommend softer foods like yogurts, pasta, and steamed vegetables. 

Have an itch for an apple or another type of hard food? Cut them up into smaller bite-sized pieces first to protect your smile.

Protective Gear

A mouthguard is a must-have for sports players going through orthodontic treatment. It protects your appliance, lips, cheeks, and gums from injury. Whether it’s a practice or a game, wearing a mouthguard should become a key part of how you play.

The Importance of Regular Orthodontic Visits

Attending your regular appointments with Manhattan Family Orthodontics isn’t just for adjustments. They’re the perfect time for our doctors to spot any potential issues before they get out of hand. Plus, it’s a chance to get some helpful advice on your treatment.

What to Include in Your Orthodontic Emergency Pack

Create a small kit with dental wax, a small mirror, and some cleaning supplies. Dental wax helps cover any sharp edges that can irritate your mouth. The mirror and the cleaning supplies can help spot and treat any minor adjustments you see.

By following these tips, you’re preventing emergencies and making sure your treatment goes as smoothly and comfortably as possible. Remember, we’re your partner on your journey, so don’t hesitate to reach out with any questions or concerns.

How Do I Handle Orthodontic Emergencies?

Handling Orthodontic Issues at Manhattan Family Orthodontics

Starting on your orthodontic journey is smoother with the right support and information. Whether you’re dealing with a loose bracket, a poking wire, or just some discomfort, Manhattan Family Orthodontics is here to assist you. Don’t hesitate to call us for guidance or to book your next appointment. Your perfect smile is waiting right here in Manhattan at our Uptown or Downton office!