Orthodontic issues can certainly arise while you are at home or even while you are on vacation. However, keep in mind that true orthodontic emergencies are incredibly rare. If you are experiencing these emergencies, such as trauma to the mouth or swallowing part of an orthodontic appliance, you may need to visit the emergency room. These are not situations that can be handled at home and it is important to obtain the appropriate treatment. There are many other issues that can be handled from home until you are able to make it into our office. Here are some tips for handling orthodontic issues at home.
Food often becomes stuck in between braces. While this is not an orthodontic emergency, it can certainly be frustrating. This issue can be easily resolved when you are at home. You can usually remove the food particle with an orthodontic flosser that will allow you to reach beneath the surface of the braces. However, if you are out and about, you may not have floss available. This doesn’t mean that you have to suffer through the day with food in your teeth. If there is no other alternative, you may be able to remove the food particle by very carefully using a toothpick to move it out from your braces. You should also take care to rinse your mouth with water regularly. This can help to flush out food particles before they become wedged in your braces.
Braces use wires and rubber bands to guide the teeth back into place. The use of these wires can sometimes result in wires that poke the inside of your cheek. This can be incredibly uncomfortable and difficult to deal with. However, it isn’t too difficult to rectify when you are experiencing a poking wire. First, you will want to gently push the wire out of the way with a clean cotton swab or the eraser end of a pencil. Ensure that you wash anything before you put it in your mouth to prevent a transfer of bacteria. Then, if it is a relatively small piece of wire, you can use dental wax to cover the offending piece.
If the piece of wire poking your mouth is extremely long, you may need to snip the wire to remove the discomfort. This can be done with the use of clean nail clippers. If you have to clip the wire, you will want to schedule repairs with us to ensure that they continue to function.
Cheek or Lip Irritation
Irritation of the cheek or the lips is incredibly common, especially at the beginning of orthodontic treatment. This irritation should go away within a few days as your mouth adjusts to the new braces. There are several methods that you can use to minimize discomfort during this period of adjustment. Rinse your mouth with a saltwater solution to help soothe the discomfort. You may also be able to use dental wax as a barrier to the inside of your mouth, which can prevent an escalation of the irritation.
Loose or Broken Bracket
A bracket may loosen or break for many reasons. You may have bitten down on something hard, which has caused the loosening or gotten hit in the face by a basketball. Whatever the cause, it is important to pay attention to where the bracket has become loose. When the loose bracket is in the back off the mouth, you may be able to resolve the problem by snipping off the excess water. If it is present in the front, you will want to carefully use tweezers to move the loose bracket back into its intended position. You can use your handy dental wax to hold the bracket in place until you are able to obtain repairs.
The O-ring is the small rubber band that is used to help hold the braces in place. Occasionally, this O-ring may pop off of the braces, which can leave a loosened portion. If this happens, you will first want to try to find the O-ring. This is often much easier if you like bright colored bands on your braces. If you can find the O-ring, you will want to ensure that you clean it carefully and use tweezers to attempt to put the O-ring back on. However, if you can’t find it, you will want to contact our office to schedule an appointment to restore it. In the meantime, you can use dental wax in order to prevent any loosened portion of the braces from poking into your mouth until you can get back to our office.
Sensitive teeth is an extremely common condition as the orthodontic treatment helps to move your teeth back into place. This often results in pain and discomfort. In order to minimize the negative impact of sensitive teeth, you should be careful about what you eat. Sip on cold beverages to help soothe the pain. You may also want to eat primarily soft foods. You can take pain relievers, such as Ibuprofen, in order to reduce your discomfort until the sensitivity lessens.
There isn’t really a method for handling lost aligners from your home. When you lose these aligners, Invisalign treatment will stop being effective. It is important to be incredibly careful with your lost aligners. Take extra precautions to ensure that you know where your aligners are at all times. If you have lost your aligner, you will want to contact us as soon as possible to get your orthodontic treatment back on track.
At Bailey Orthodontics, we provide the services that you need to obtain a beautiful, pristine smile. Orthodontic treatment can result in some situations that will be difficult to resolve at home. When you handle orthodontic issues at home, you will be able to protect your comfort in between visits to our office. If you are ever unsure how to handle an orthodontic issue, you should consult with our expert team. To learn more about the best ways to handle an orthodontic issue at home, contact us at Bailey Orthodontics today!