Although braces typically blend in with everyday life, especially after you’ve had the chance to get used to them, there can be minor problems that occur. Every once in a while, you may experience slight discomfort due to a loose bracket or a poking wire, and you may not know what to do about it. There’s a difference between a braces problem and an orthodontic emergency. When you have a problem, you’re often able to alleviate it yourself. So don’t panic!
Have a braces problem? We have a solution.
Sometimes wires get into a position where they poke the sides of the mouth. This can cause pain and soreness, especially if it’s not fixed. While a broken or severely ben wire may require a trip to the orthodontist, oftentimes you’re able to fix this issue with a little help from some simple household tools.
If a wire is poking the inside of your mouth, carefully bend the wire back with the eraser end of a pencil or a pair of tweezers. Then, secure it with some orthodontic wax so it no longer irritates the sides of your mouth. You’ll most likely need to see your orthodontist in a timely manner if you’re unable to secure the wire back into place.
You’re innocently eating lunch, then all of a sudden you hear a sound coming from your braces. Oh, no! A bracket has just popped loose from your tooth! Although a broken bracket may be scary or even a bit uncomfortable, you’re able to take some next steps to ensure when you see your orthodontist for your repair appointment, you’ve done the right thing.
If the bracket has broken completely off of the tooth and wire, be sure to place it in a secure location, so you can bring it with you to your orthodontist appointment. If it is still connected to the wire, use orthodontic wax to help secure it in place until you can make it back to your orthodontist. Do not pry it off of the tooth if it hasn’t come completely off. This has the potential to damage your tooth and cause discomfort.
Sometimes, your archwire will pop out of place, which can not only cause pain, but it can compromise your treatment if not put back where it belongs.
If you are able, gently slide the wire back into place using a set of tweezers. This often fixes the issue until you can get back to your orthodontist. It’s best to make an appointment to see them as soon as possible, so you’re not risking your treatment plan.
Braces can take a little time to get used to, so it’s not uncommon to have slight discomfort from time to time. This typically occurs after braces are initially put on and after adjustment appointments.
Although it’s not ideal, the discomfort will dissipate after a few days, and there are steps you can take to alleviate this pain right from home. These steps include:
- Using orthodontic wax on areas rubbing against the mouth
- Taking over-the-counter pain medication to ease discomfort
- Eating soft foods
- Icing the area
As you can see, there are common problems that can occur when you have braces, but they can often easily be fixed without even leaving home. Remember, it’s best to keep your orthodontist in the loop when these instances occur, so they can advise you on your best next steps.