How can orthodontics become a dental emergency?

Dante A. Gonzales, DMD
Orthodontics & Dentofacial Orthopedics
An orthodontic emergency usually involves orthodontic appliances that have been damaged or altered from their original placement by the orthodontist. Sometimes, the appliances may start to poke in the cheek or gums, or obstruct the patient's bite or speech. These types of problems need to be addressed by the orthodontist as soon as possible to avoid further discomfort and possibly unwanted shifting of the teeth.
Stephen P. Simpson, DDS
Orthodontics & Dentofacial Orthopedics

The most common orthodontic emergencies involve breakage, displacement or alteration of an orthodontic appliance. This can lead to discomfort and possible displacement of teeth, so when an appliance or portion of an appliance has been damaged it is imperative that the patient be seen as expeditiously as possible to avoid complications to treatment progress, and minimize patient discomfort. 

Wearing braces rarely leads to a dental emergency, but accidents happen. Loose brackets usually do not cause pain, and you should make an appointment to see your orthodontist to have it glued back on. Loose bands are also not an emergency. Your orthodontist can usually manage it, but sometimes emergency help is needed. If a  wire is stuck or has caused the gums or cheeks to become infected see your dentist.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.