Our smiles are one of the first things that people notice about us. A happy and beautiful smile can help you feel confident and self-assured, but if you struggle with the appearance or the function of your smile, you may find yourself hesitating instead of sharing your smile with your friends and peers. Getting orthodontic treatment can be one of the best things you can do for yourself, giving you a healthy boost to your self-esteem. However, even the most careful patients sometimes have orthodontic emergencies. If you find yourself in a situation that may feel like an emergency, we here at First Impressions Orthodontics for Children & Adults are here for you to help you get prompt and compassionate care for your orthodontic emergency.
What is an Orthodontic Emergency?
An orthodontic emergency is a situation that can arise when you are undergoing orthodontic treatment. These things can be situations where your orthodontic appliance is at risk, or you are in danger. While some situations may arise that can seem scary, or uncomfortable, a true dental emergency is a very rare occurrence. Of course, if you are in pain or experiencing bleeding, it is essential that you reach out to us right away for treatment. However, you may be surprised to learn that some things that may feel like an emergency can be managed at home before you can come in to see us.
When you experience trauma to the mouth and feel that emergency care is needed, please call us at (203) 307-0996 immediately. If you can't get hold of us, please don't hesitate to call 911. We will make every effort to see you same-day as we always set aside some time every day for emergency issues.
Types of Non-Emergencies
Some situations that may seem like an emergency but may be addressed at home are when food gets caught in your braces, a ligature breaks off, or a wire feels loose, or your lips or gums are sore from starting orthodontic treatment.
If a piece of food is trapped between your teeth and your braces, try to pry it loose with a bit of dental floss or try to remove it with a toothpick. If you cannot remove it, then please give us a call, and we can take a look at it. If you find that your lips or gums are getting minor abrasions on them from your braces, then you can rinse your mouth out with salt water to help treat it. You can also place a small bit of dental wax over the part of the appliance that is causing the nicks.
If your wires are poking you, you can cover them with a piece of dental wax. If you find that your wires are loose, you can try to adjust it with a pair of tweezers. We can take a look at it, though, to help it fit better. If a bracket becomes loose or dislodged, then you can set it aside in a small baggie to bring to your next appointment with us.
Types of Orthodontic Emergencies
When an orthodontic emergency does happen, it is important that you know how to recognize it so you can reach out to us for treatment.
If you sustain an injury to your face, whether from an accident or from playing sports, we need you to come in so we can assess the injury and minimize damage to yourself and your appliance. If you think you are developing an infection from a sore caused by your orthodontic appliance, then we also need to examine you. In very rare cases, some patients may accidentally swallow a part of their orthodontic appliance. You do need to call us if this happens, as this can be dangerous if you try to remove it on your own.
If you suspect that you have an orthodontic emergency, it is vital that you call us right away for an assessment of the emergency and treatment for it. The sooner you contact us, the better your outcome may be. To learn more about dental emergencies, or to make an appointment with us here give us a call at (203) 292-9595.