Common Problems

What to do in case of an emergency?

Contact our office as soon as possible if you break or loosen any of your appliances. We will be able to determine whether an emergency visit to see us is necessary or whether the problem can be solved at home. Please save any broken braces, bands, or appliances and bring them with you. If in doubt, don’t throw it out! 

Loose braces or bands

If the bracket or band is not causing discomfort, call us and we will determine if a repair visit is necessary. If you are in pain, call us as soon as possible. If the bracket or band has come loose, please save and bring it with you to your next appointment.

Follow care instructions and your treatment will go faster.


Swallowed brace, wire, or rubber band

Accidental swallowing of a small brace or wire segment is usually harmless. However, if you are experiencing difficulty breathing, proceed to an emergency room immediately. If you experience digestive discomfort, call your family physician for how to proceed.


Wire irritations

Sometimes a wire may cause discomfort by sticking out the back end of the braces. Several home remedies may solve the problem. Try sliding the wire back through the brace using tweezers. You can try to tuck in the wire with a pencil eraser. If those options don’t help, you can try covering the wire with wax or a small piece of sugarless gum.  If the problem cannot be resolved, call our office for an appointment.


Lost separators

Call our office to see if it needs to be replaced.


Discomfort with orthodontic treatment

For the first week after placement of braces and/or adjustments, you will likely feel some pain or discomfort. Regular over-the-counter pain relievers can be taken during this time of adjustment. Prescription pain medications are not necessary.


Lost or broken retainer

Call our office immediately to schedule the repair or replacement of your retainer. Waiting even a week or two may cause the teeth to shift and require additional treatment.