We make every effort to be certain your appliance is secure and comfortable. Your appliance is made of the strongest material available and bonded as securely as it can be. Please DO NOT subject your appliance/braces to anything other than normal force. No appliance, braces or bonding agent can withstand prying or bending forces. However, accidents can happen and we have some suggestions to help you if you have a problem between appointments.
PROBLEM: Something sharp is poking or rubbing your gums, lips or cheeks.
– Cover the sharp spot with orthodontic wax. We gave you some at your initial appointment or you can buy some in the dental department of any drugstore or grocery store.
– Clip the wire where it is sticking out. You can use a small pair of wire cutting pliers if you have some, or you can try using a nail clipper.
– A bent ligature wire (wire “thread”) can be pushed back in with the eraser end of a pencil.
PROBLEM: A bracket or band feels like it is moving around.
– Unless this is causing discomfort, it can probably wait until your next appointment. You may be able to cover the loose bracket with wax until you come in for a repair. This will prevent it from rubbing on your gums or cheek.
PROBLEM: I have a sore spot, blister or ulcer under my removable appliance.
– Try rubbing Orabase (Orajel) on the sore spot. Orabase is a topical anesthetic available in a small tube at any pharmacy. This will numb the area but not correct the cause. It is important to keep your mouth clean. DO NOT STOP BRUSHING. Rinsing with warm salt water can help heal the area.
– Call for an appointment. Until you see us for an adjustment, you can try smoothing the tight spot on your appliance with wet/dry (black) sandpaper. You can get this sandpaper at Canadian Tire, Wal-Mart or Home Depot. Cut a 1” square of sandpaper and gently hold your appliance under running water while rubbing the sandpaper on the spot that seems to be digging in. It is important to keep wearing your appliance. If it is left out, even for a short time, it will not fit properly.
PROBLEM: My teeth really ache all over and I can hardly chew.
– This problem will go away. It is normal for your teeth to be uncomfortable for 1-10 days following the placement of braces or an appliance. In the meantime, something cold will often ease the discomfort. Don’t avoid chewing as this will make the discomfort last longer. Chew something soft, like sugarless gum. This will help to ‘massage’ your teeth until they feel better.
– You may also find it beneficial to take an analgesic (pain killer) like Advil or Tylenol as long as you are not allergic. Any medication that you would take for a headache should work well for braces pain.
PROBLEM: The expansion screw on my removable appliance is bugging me, cutting into my gums, or catching on my tongue.
SOLUTION: As the expansion increases, things can get stuck in the opening. Fill in the expansion “gap” with orthodontic wax.