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Urgent Orthodontics: How to Prevent Emergencies

February 15, 2024

Filed under: Uncategorized — drcartwright @ 3:44 pm

Illustration of a tooth with braces inside a lifesaverTry though you might, it’s impossible to anticipate when an urgent situation will crop up, and orthodontic emergencies are no different! Whether you’ve developed a chronic toothache or noticed that a bracket has come loose, it’s important to contact your provider right away. You wouldn’t want the dilemma to impact your treatment timeline, after all.

If you’ve found yourself dealing with an unexpected issue, keep reading to learn more about some common problems and how you can address them!

What Is an Orthodontic Emergency?

If you’re not sure whether your situation requires immediate attention, you might not reach out to your orthodontist right away when something happens. Some common concerns that deserve a swift response can include:

  • Broken brackets.
  • Brackets that are loose or missing.
  • Protruding wires.
  • Damaged retainer or aligner.

If you’re still feeling uncertain, the best way to determine whether you need to be seen right away is to call your orthodontist. Let them know what’s going on and depending on your circumstances, they’ll schedule you for an appointment or provide care instructions over the phone.

How Can I Prevent Orthodontic Emergencies?

While you can’t stop unexpected things from happening, you can take proactive steps to keep your braces in good condition. That way, you’re less likely to run into any serious problems. To prevent undesirable outcomes, you can:

  • Watch what you eat. You will have received a list of dietary restrictions when you first were fitted with braces. By following the guidelines, you can prevent broken brackets and wires that can cut the tender tissues inside your mouth. Steer clear of overly hard or sticky foods that can damage or dislodge your dental gear.
  • Use wax. If you’ve noticed raw or sore spots inside your mouth, it could be due to constant friction from the wires and brackets. Your orthodontist can provide you with a special wax that can be used to cover the parts that poke you.
  • Get a mouthguard. For patients who participate in physical activities like martial arts or team sports, it’s wise to get a mouthguard. This can protect not only your braces, but also your teeth, tongue, and the insides of your lips and cheeks.
  • Call your orthodontist. If you notice anything odd about or out of place, like a bracket that looks or feels looser than usual, then contact your provider right away. There may be an immediate, simple fix they can apply that prevents more complex issues down the road.

Now that you know more about a few common orthodontic emergencies, you’ll be prepared if they ever happen to you!

About the Practice

At Cartwright Orthodontics, adults and children alike benefit from two board-certified experts who provide a full array of orthodontic services, including traditional braces. With more than 20 years of experience between them, they work together to provide individualized solutions to meet your needs. They have two convenient locations and extended hours so that you’re sure to find an appointment time that works for your busy schedule. If you’re having an emergency and need help, you’re welcome to contact our Bethel Park location on the website or by calling (412) 833-6188.

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