As much as we try to prevent them, dental emergencies happen – even in orthodontics. Your Plant City orthodontist wants to see you right away if you are experiencing bleeding or severe pain. Even if that isn’t the case, contact our dental team. They can help ease your mind and schedule an appointment for you to make sure nothing is going on that can inhibit your orthodontic progress.
One of the reasons why we so often recommend Invisalign® treatment is because our patients rarely experience the need for emergency care in Plant City. Patients in traditional braces don’t always experience dental emergencies either but they are somewhat more common. Here are a few instances that are considered orthodontic emergencies.
A common orthodontic emergency is losing a rubber band that fits around the brackets. Losing a band doesn’t affect whether your teeth move or not. They simply keep the archwire in place. However, problems can arise when the archwire comes loose and starts to poke your cheeks or gums. Contact us to replace the band.
One of the most common complaints amongst patients in traditional braces is that their archwire is poking out and sticking into their soft tissues. We request that patients contact us to address the wire issue instead of trying to take matters into their own hands.
Probably the most common complaint amongst orthodontic patients – whether they’re in traditional braces, self-ligating braces, or Invisalign® – is tooth soreness. The pressure on the teeth, gums, and ligaments that connect the two can lead to some discomfort. It is not an emergency unless you’re bleeding, or the pain is unbearable, in which case you should contact your Plant City emergency dentist right away.
The discomfort usually dissipates within a week or so. To expedite the process, use over the counter pain relievers or anti-inflammatory medications if you’re able to do so. You can also rinse with warm salt water, which reduces inflammation and irritation as well. Chewing might feel uncomfortable at first but doing it can actually help reduce your pain over time because the chewing action stimulates blood flow.
It is not uncommon for metal braces to irritate the soft tissues of the mouth, not because of the metal necessarily (since the metals are biocompatible) but because of the rough surfaces. Minor sores typically go away within a few days. If the sores don’t go away or the pain/irritation gets worse, we request that patients contact us so we can evaluate their tissues and alleviate their discomfort.
Metal or ceramic brackets can occasionally come loose. Again, it rarely happens and is not a serious emergency. However, it can slow the progress of your treatment. If a bracket is loose, chipped, or breaks off completely, contact us so we can reattach or replace the bracket as soon as possible.
Invisalign® patients rarely have dental emergencies. The reason for this is because the clear aligners are smooth and comfortable. They will not irritate the soft tissues of your mouth. Additionally, aligners don’t have metal parts that can poke sensitive tissues, nor do they have rubber bands that can come off or brackets that can come loose. The simple design of Invisalign® clear aligners is yet another benefit of choosing this type of orthodontic treatment.
There are some things you can do to prevent an orthodontic emergency in Plant City whether you’re an Invisalign® or braces patient.
Use dental wax to smooth the edges of your brackets so they don’t cause sores
Talk to your orthodontist about creating an orthodontic emergency kit so you can take care of minor emergencies at home or while out of town
Practice good home care, since poor oral health can make a bad situation (like sore teeth) even worse
Wear a mouthguard when engaging in sports (no matter your age!)
Follow your Plant City orthodontist’s care instructions, whether it’s related to a removable or fixed orthodontic device
Follow your orthodontist’s food guidelines (including avoiding foods that are crunchy, hard, or sticky)
Contact our office if you lose one or both of your clear aligners and wear an older pair in the meantime
If you are experiencing any sort of pain or discomfort, are bleeding, or have a broken or popped out tooth, seek emergency dental or medical care immediately. We would rather be safe than sorry. Though experiencing emergencies is uncommon amongst our Invisalign® patients, pain and discomfort can be a sign of a serious condition, such as a cavity, infection, or food impaction. Contact our team right away so we can address you or your child’s needs.
ADA Codes For Applicable Services: Comprehensive Exam: D0150, Full Mouth Xrays: D0120, Panoramic Xray: D0330
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