Orthodontic Emergencies

Orthodontic Emergencies

Tools and Supplies

Most orthodontic emergencies can be handled with tools you likely have in your home.

  • Orthodontic wax (given to you the day the braces are placed)
  • Fingernail clippers
  • Proxy brushes (given to you the day the braces are placed)
  • Warm salt water for sores
  • Non-perscription pain reliever (Tylenol or Ibuprofen)

Lost wire or colored band

Please call our office if you lose a wire or a colored band from a bracket. Dr. Robert will advise whether you should be seen.


It is normal for a patient to have discomfort for one or two days after the braces have been adjusted. This can make eating uncomfortable. Please be aware that this is normal and temporary. Soft foods may be needed until the discomfort subsides. Tylenol or Ibuprofen is recommended to aid with discomfort.

Mouth Sores

Some patients may get mouth sores during orthodontic treatment. To aid in the healing of mouth sores, orthodontic wax should be placed over the area of the braces near the sore. This will stop the braces from irritating the sore. Warm salt water rinses are also recommended to seed the healing process of the sores. Over the counter topical anesthetics such as Orajel or Kanka may relieve pain associated with mouth sores.

Protruding Wires

Occasionally the end of the wire will work itself out of place and irritate the mouth. Orthodontic wax may be placed over the wire to relieve pain. Fingernail clippers may be used to clip long wires. Please make the orthodontist aware as the patient may need to be seen to relieve discomfort.

Loose Brackets

Brackets are the individual parts of braces that are attached to each tooth. The brackets can be knocked off if hard, crunchy or sticky foods have been eaten. They may also be knocked off during play. We encourage all athletes to wear a mouth guard designed for braces. If a bracket becomes loose and is causing discomfort, place orthodontic wax over the bracket until an appointment can be made. If the bracket come loose in anyway, please contact our office so the appropriate steps may be taken to reduce any discomfort.

Mouth guards

If you play a contact sport or any activity where there is potential for trauma it is highly recommended that you wear a mouth guard. While in orthodontic treatment you will need to wear a mouth guard designed for braces. This mouth guard will have a bite plane for shock absorption as well as a protective shield to prevent lacerations to oral tissue. It is very important that you do not use a boil and bite mouth guard with braces as it will cause appliances to break. We do sell orthodontic mouth guards in our office for your convenience.