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When something doesn’t go according to plan with your braces or aligners, it can cause a bit of concern. “Is this normal?” “What do I do?” “Is it going to get worse?” The most important thing to remember is not to panic.

While problems are rare, it’s essential to know your next steps if they arise. You may be very careful with your teeth, but accidents can still happen. So, what situations require immediate attention, and how can you handle them with ease?

Minor Problems

True orthodontic emergencies are extremely rare. However, there are common problems that may occur occasionally. These issues might not always happen at the most convenient times (like 8 p.m. on a Friday night) and can cause some slight discomfort, but they can usually be addressed with a phone call. Minor orthodontic issues include:

  • Loose or broken wires
  • Loose or broken brackets
  • Poking wires
  • General discomfort
  • Loss of Invisalign aligners

Typically, you can wait a couple of days until you have time to see your orthodontist for a quick fix. In some cases, your orthodontist will advise you on how to fix your problem over the phone. That’s why your first step is calling your orthodontist and explaining the situation. To learn more about managing minor orthodontic problems read this blog link.

True Orthodontic Emergencies

A true orthodontic emergency is much more severe and will require a special trip to your orthodontist as soon as possible to correct. These more serious issues include:

  • Infection causing swelling in the mouth or face
  • Injury or trauma to the teeth, mouth, or face
  • Severe pain in the mouth or face

In these true orthodontic emergencies, the help of a skilled professional is required, so don’t wait. You may even need assistance from someone other than your orthodontist, especially if you have injuries to your face or jaw, making your next steps crucial.

How to Handle a True Orthodontic Emergency

If you’re experiencing a true orthodontic emergency, the first thing you need to do is remain calm. Next, call your orthodontist and explain what happened, how you’re feeling, and the type of injuries or symptoms you have. Getting your orthodontist involved as soon as possible is important for assessing the damage and creating a plan to handle the situation properly. Once you have a plan, act on it to prevent additional problems from arising or becoming more severe.

As you can see, minor problems may pop up occasionally and can be handled quite easily. However, if you find yourself in a true orthodontic emergency, your orthodontist will need to know as soon as possible. That way, you can focus on getting better and continuing your treatment.

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