Emergency Care


Although true orthodontic emergencies are rare, you should call our office whenever you experience severe pain or have a broken or painful appliance that can’t be resolved on your own. We can schedule your appointment and help you feel comfortable again as quickly as possible.

Many orthodontic problems have temporary, at-home solutions that will effectively curb the issue until you have your appointment. If a piece is loose and removable, put it in a plastic bag and bring it along to your next appointment. You can apply soft wax to any component of your braces something is poking you. If the wire has slid out of place, try to thread it back through the tubes on the brackets using tweezers or needle-nosed pliers.

While these solutions may temporarily relieve discomfort, it is important that you still call us as soon as possible to schedule an appointment to repair the issue. If your device remains damaged for an extended period of time, it may result in disruptions to your treatment plan.

It's normal for a patient to experience general mouth soreness and discomfort for three to five days after getting braces. Teeth may be tender which can make eating uncomfortable. Try to eat soft foods until your teeth do not hurt to chew. If you have irritated gums or other sore spots in your mouth, try rinsing your mouth with a warm saltwater solution. Dissolve one teaspoon of salt in eight ounces of warm water and rinse your mouth out with the solution. If soreness persists, you can try taking a pain reliever such as Acetaminophen (Tylenol). Medications including Aspirin, Ibuprofen (Motrin, Advil), and Naproxen Sodium (Naprosyn, Anaprox) can delay your treatment as they actually slow tooth movement, so avoid taking these medications frequently while wearing braces.


Headgear discomfort is commonly caused by not wearing the device as instructed by your orthodontist, so please refer to the instructions you were provided. If the facebow (metal wire piece) gets bent, please call our office to schedule an appointment. The more often you wear your headgear the less it will hurt, so make sure that you wear the device for the prescribed amount of hours.


You can apply wax to the any part of the appliance that is poking you to feel more comfortable.


Leave the bracket or band in place if it is still attached to the wire. If the broken piece is uncomfortable, put wax on it. If the broken bracket or band comes out completely or can be removed easily, place it in a plastic bag and bring it in to your next appointment.


Use a pair of tweezers or needle-nosed pliers to try to thread the wire back into place through the tubes along the sides of the brackets. If you are unable to put the wire back into place or relieve the discomfort with wax, as a last resort use a small fingernail clipper to clip the wire behind the last tooth to which it is securely fastened. Place wax on the end of the wire if it still has a sharp end.


If a wire is causing irritation, use a pencil eraser or a Q-tip to push the poking wire down and away from the area so that it is no longer poking. You can also place wax on the wire to alleviate the discomfort.