Emergency Care

Some orthodontic patients will experience an injury to the mouth from time to time during treatment. When it comes to wearing braces and orthodontic appliances, there are generally two types of dental emergencies.

Emergencies Related to Orthodontic Appliances

It is common for appliances to bend or break during orthodontic treatment. Examples include loose bands, loose brackets, and broken or poking wires. If you experience any of these issues, please call our office for an appointment during patient hours.

Due to our busy daily schedule, we can’t handle emergencies on a walk-in basis. Since we may not be able to see you or your child right away, here are some helpful hints to address some of the problems you may encounter until you can schedule a visit to our office.

  • If a tie wire is irritating your mouth, tuck it under the archwire with a blunt object such as a Q-tip or pencil eraser. You can also cover a poking wire with orthodontic wax or beeswax.
  • A loose band or bracket can generally be left in place until seen in our office. Call Smiles For Maine Orthodontics, during patient hours, when you notice a loose band or bracket. We will schedule you to reattach the loose appliance if indicated.
  • A poking or broken archwire can often be bent in with a pencil eraser or cut with nail clippers. If you don’t think you can fix the issue on your own, call our office.
  • Watch the video below that explains how to handle an orthodontic emergency.

Direct Injuries to the Mouth and Teeth

Whether or not you are currently undergoing orthodontic treatment, if you sustain an injury to your mouth then you should immediately ice the injured area. You should also contact your regular dentist right away so they can take an x-ray to determine the extent of the injury.

If a tooth has been knocked out, fractured, or displaced, then it is best to contact your family dentist first. As an orthodontic office, we may not have the necessary materials or anesthesia required to treat these injuries. If orthodontic appliances are dislodged or displaced, we will need to replace or adjust the appliances as soon as possible, after you have seen your general dentist, depending upon the comfort level of the patient.

After Office Hours

If an orthodontic emergency arises where the patient is in pain after hours, please contact our office.  Information is available regarding who to contact for further assistance.