Troubleshooting Tips

View braces diagram

  • If a broken bracket or loose band occurs discontinue use of all Head Gear, elastics, or turning an RPE until it has been re-cemented. If the band or bracket is still attached to the wire, leave it in place, and if it becomes uncomfortable place wax on the problem area.If the band, bracket, or appliance comes completely un-hooked and out of the mouth, save all parts and bring them with you to your next appointment for cementation. Please call the office to notify us of any and all broken brackets, bands, or appliances, so that we may either add time to an existing appointment or make a new appointment to accommodate necessary repairs.
  • Missing elastic or wire ties can occur from eating or brushing. While it is not an emergency, it should be replaced to keep the wire from moving.
  • Flexible wires can come out of arch wire tubes. You can place the wire back into the tube using tweezers or place wax on the end of the wire and call the office for an appointment.
  • During movement of the teeth, wires can rotate from one side to the other. A quick fix is to try and slide the wire back around to the other side. If you cannot do this at home, place wax and call the office.
  • Arch wires that are long can poke the back of the mouth. Small flexible wires can be trimmed with nail clippers; otherwise, place wax over the end of the wire and call the office for an appointment.
  • Wire ties that poke can be bent back with a pencil eraser or the back of a spoon. If it continues to cause discomfort, place wax over the entire bracket and call the office for an appointment.
  • If head gear or an appliance is fitting questionably, discontinue use and call the office for an appointment.
  • At any time during treatment you may experience soreness and discomfort from the braces. Warm salt water rinses can help alleviate mild discomfort, while moderate to severe pain may require the use of an over-the-counter pain reliever. Anything you would normally use for headaches or similar discomfort will be appropriate.

Comfort Adjustments

Comfort adjustment appointments are made to accommodate patients that have discomfort, bleeding, or swelling related to their orthodontic treatment. This can include anything from trauma to the mouth to a poking arch wire. These patients will be seen as soon as possible and given appropriate care or referred to another specialist for treatment.

To ensure that you are seen in a timely manner, please call to make an appointment and never just drop by the office.


What do I do when a tooth is knocked out?

An avulsed tooth is a tooth that has been knocked completely out of its socket. If this should happen, the steps below should immediately be followed:

  1. locate the tooth
  2. do not touch or scrape the root of the tooth
  3. do not allow the tooth to dry
  4. rinse the tooth thoroughly in cool tap water
  5. if possible, insert the tooth into its socket; if this is not possible, please use one of the following options:
    • place the tooth under the tongue
    • place the tooth in the mouth next to the cheek
    • place the tooth in a cup of milk
    • place the tooth in a cup of cold water

Time is of great value when a tooth has been avulsed. Reacting quickly may help save the life of the tooth. You will need to see your family dentist or orthodontist within twenty minutes of the accident.

Please call our office immediately after seeing your family dentist. If you are unable to reach your family dentist or an alternate emergency facility, call our office and we will try to assist you in locating someone to care for the injury. Please discuss potential procedures with your family dentist at your next visit to their office.