Emergency Care

What Constitutes an Orthodontic Emergency

If something on your brace apparatus becomes loose or breaks, it’s most likely not an emergency and can be taken care of with a follow-up visit to your orthodontist. Simply contact Dr. Goldenberg during normal business hours and explain the situation. In the meantime, you can find temporary solutions to common braces issues throughout this page.

Traumatic Injury

If you experience trauma to your face or mouth or feel that emergency care is necessary, call the office right away. Our emergency care answering service will contact our on-call staff, and we’ll make sure to take care of you as soon as possible.

Soreness from Braces

It’s normal to have a little discomfort for a day or two after braces are put in or adjusted at future appointments. It’s not an emergency, but it can be uncomfortable, especially when trying to eat. Eating soft foods for a couple days may help. Soups, stews and macaroni and cheese are good choices. Over-the-counter pain relievers like acetaminophen or ibuprofen can help, too.

Mouth Sores from Braces

With traditional braces, you might experience a few mouth sores. These sores may appear inside the cheeks, or on the lips or even on the tongue. These sores are common, and unfortunately may be uncomfortable.

Applying a topical anesthetic like Orabase or Ora-Gel will help you feel better, as well as help the sores heal. Reapply the anesthetic as often as you need to, and apply it with a cotton swab so you don’t introduce the area to possible infection.

Irritation of Lips and Cheeks

With braces, you have an appliance in your mouth that it simply isn’t used to. It may take a little time for your mouth, cheek, lips and tongue to get used to their new friend. To help alleviate some of the irritation, Dr. Goldenberg will provide you with relief wax. Simply pinch off a small piece and roll it into a tiny ball. Flatten the ball and place it over the area of the braces that is causing the irritation. You’ll be able to eat better, talk better, and feel better just by having a little buffer between your braces and your cheek or lip. If the irritation persists, though, call our office. You may need a little adjustment. Oh, and if you accidentally swallow the wax, don’t worry. It’s perfectly harmless.

What to do if Brackets Come Loose

Brackets serve as handles to hold the wire of the braces in place. Brackets are generally bonded to the teeth with adhesive. They are tough, sturdy and stable. But if you eat hard, crunchy or sticky types of food, the brackets can indeed loosen. If you get hit in the mouth, the brackets can loosen, too.

The best thing to do if a bracket breaks or comes loose is contact Dr. Goldenberg. He will want to examine your mouth and decide the best course of action to fix the bracket. Plus, he has all the tools and expertise to make the fix.

What to do If Wires come Loose

The arch wire of braces fits in the horizontal slots in each bracket. The wire is secured to all of the brackets, and occasionally, simply by the act of biting and chewing, the end of a wire will work itself out and cause irritation. The best way to alleviate the discomfort is to push the wire back down. Use a Q-tip or pencil eraser to push the wire back so it’s flat against your tooth. If you can’t get the wire back to a comfortable position, cover it with relief wax to have a buffer between your braces and the area of your mouth that’s irritated In an extremely bothersome situation, and as a last resort, clip the wire. Reduce the possibility of swallowing the snipped piece by putting a folded tissue or piece of gauze around the area. Use

In an extremely bothersome situation, and as a last resort, clip the wire. Reduce the possibility of swallowing the snipped piece by putting a folded tissue or piece of gauze around the area. Use a sharp clippers and snip off the wire. Use relief wax if the area is still irritated. Make a follow-up appointment with Dr. Goldenberg to make sure the braces are still secure and to get a different wire if necessary.