A true orthodontic emergency is extremely rare and most minor mishaps can be handled at home. However, if you do experience a serious issue, such as infection or swelling of the face, mouth or gums; trauma or injury to the face, mouth or teeth; or severe discomfort or pain in those areas, visit your general dentist as soon as possible. Once the immediate issue has been dealt with, please let us know so that we’re in the loop and your treatment stays on track. For minor discomforts, read on to learn how to troubleshoot them. If you need more guidance on dealing with a braces or Invisalign problem, give us a call at 604-593-5225 (Scottsdale), 604-585-1304 (Guildford), 604-381-3000 (Abbotsford) or 604-427-3001 (Langley) and we’ll be more than happy to help!

Minor Discomforts

Soreness After Bonding or General Pain
(Braces & Invisalign)

Your teeth may be tender to biting pressure for three to five days after you first get your braces put on or you begin Invisalign treatment. Sometimes, you may also feel some tenderness following braces adjustments or after popping in new Invisalign aligners. This can be relieved by rinsing your mouth with a warm salt water mouthwash (one teaspoon of salt dissolved in a glass of warm water), or by taking over-the-counter medicine, such as Tylenol or Advil.

The lips, cheeks, and tongue may also become irritated for one to two weeks after you’ve received your braces or Invisalign. Over time, your mouth will toughen up and become accustomed to the surface of the braces. For braces, you can put wax on the areas that are bothering you to lessen the discomfort.

Loosening of Teeth
(Braces & Invisalign)

This is to be expected throughout treatment. Don’t worry! It’s normal. Teeth must slightly loosen first so they can be moved. Your teeth will again become firmly fixed in their corrected positions.

Loose Wire or Band
(Braces)

Don’t be alarmed if a wire or band comes loose. This can happen occasionally and it’s not an orthodontic emergency. If irritation to the lips or mouth occurs because of it, place wax or wet cotton on the wire to reduce the annoyance. Call our office as soon as possible to see if we need to check and repair the appliances. If a piece comes off, save it and bring it with you to your next appointment.

Poking Wire
(Braces)

As the wires straighten your teeth, it’s common for them to become longer and this may lead to the wire poking you at the back of your braces. Sometimes, the wire can snap if you play with your braces or eat hard or sticky foods causing the same issue. If you experience this, warm up a ball of wax between your fingers and then place it on the portion of the wire that’s poking. Give us a call at the office if the wax doesn’t help.

Broken Brackets
(Braces)

Broken or loose brackets aren’t considered an urgent matter, in most cases. When a bracket comes off of a tooth, it’s still normally attached to the wire with an elastics tie (colored rings). The bracket may move or spin around on the wire. If this is a problem for you, a little wax pressed against the bracket will keep it from moving around.

Attachments Off
(Invisalign)

An attachment coming off isn’t usually an urgent matter. When an attachment comes off, we’ll simply replace it at your next scheduled visit.

Playing Sports

Wearing braces doesn’t mean you can’t play sports. It just means you’ll have to take some extra precautions. Sports-related injuries to the mouth and jaw are extremely common. While getting hit in the mouth or jaw can be a painful experience for anyone, it can hurt even more for an orthodontic patient because of your brackets and wires. Additionally, since your teeth are already undergoing change, the impact from an injury could set back your orthodontic treatment progress. That’s why a protective mouthguard is recommended for playing sports like rugby, hockey, football, basketball and others. If you play sports, please let our team know so that we can give you a complimentary sports mouthguard.

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