Fortunately, true orthodontic emergencies do not happen very often. If you break or loosen your braces or any appliance, call our Laguna Niguel orthodontic office as soon as possible. It best to call our office first and not come directly to the office. That way, we can create time to give you the attention your emergency requires. If you have a regularly scheduled appointment, it’s important to notify us if you’re experiencing any issues so we can allot the proper amount of time required to remedy the situation and get your smile journey back on track.
What to do in an orthodontic emergency?
Sometimes you may not be able to get a hold of Dr. Frial immediately, or it’s a weekend or holiday. There are steps you may be able to take to relieve the pain or provide comfort temporarily. Orthodontic wax, tweezers, pencil erasers, and fingernail clippers are all tools that are helpful to reduce discomfort. Learn more below!
If there is a loose part of the appliance that is poking you, place wax on the offending area. If the band (tooth ring) on one side of the appliance is loose, carefully place the band back in place until we can see you. We can then re-cement the appliance. Do not bite it in place as you may break or smash the band. If the bands on both sides are loose, try to remove the appliance and place it in a plastic bag to give to us for re-cementing.
If you have a loose bracket (brace), place wax on the loose bracket to prevent irritations to the lips or cheeks. If the bracket has flipped over and is causing irritations, use tweezers to flip it back over then place wax to hold it in place. Since a loose bracket is not considered an orthodontic emergency, call our office on the next business day so that we can repair it.
A loose wire may be resolved a number of ways. You may be able to move the loose wire away from the irritated area with a pencil eraser or cotton swab. Another possibility is to use clean tweezers to gently place the wire back into the bracket slot and hold it with wax if necessary. Lastly, if none of the other options work, you can cut the wire as a last resort with a clean nail clipper. Call our office on the next business day to schedule an appointment.
For a poking wire, first dry the area then place a small ball of wax. Sometimes, you may have a thinner wire that can be pushed or bent away from your lips and cheeks by a pencil eraser. Like with a loose wire, you may cut the wire as a last resort with a clean nail clipper. It is a good idea to add wax to the end of the cut wire to keep it in place.
If you have experienced facial or jaw trauma, a warm washcloth or heating pad may reduce the soreness in your face or jaws. Check to see if your wire is bent or a bracket is loose in the area you had the trauma. If you experienced a severe blow to the face, see your physician or go to the emergency room.
Dr. Frial and our team are available to take your calls for emergency treatment and can walk you through most of the issues mentioned above. If necessary, we can see you for an after-hours appointment.
See what other patients had to say about their experience with Dr. Frial's emergency orthodontic care!
“We have used Dr. Frial for both of our children's braces and they have turned out excellent. We had a tragedy with our daughter's mouth while she had the braces on and Dr. Frial came to the rescue.
She was in a jump house and did a flip, unfortunately landing with her knee to her mouth. This caused severe trauma and the teeth were dangling from the braces (otherwise the front teeth would be missing). We called him late on a Saturday night for emergency help and he met us at his office around 9pm to stabilize the teeth. He then went with us to the oral surgeon's office for the final reset of the teeth that night.
Fortunately, he saved her teeth from this accident and went above and beyond to make sure my daughter was taken care of in a professional and caring way (even though it was late on a Sat evening away from his family). If we would have gone to the ER, time would have been wasted and she would probably have lost her front teeth. I completely trust Dr. Frial and would highly recommend him to anybody needing a caring orthodontist who provides the utmost care to his patients.” – K.D.
“I have two sons who have received orthodontia treatment from Dr. Frial. I am very pleased with the end results for my 16-year-old. My 14-year-old is currently in the middle of his treatment plan and with every visit I'm reminded how professional, efficient, and caring this office is, and especially Dr. Frial. This last September 2nd, Labor Day holiday, my 14-year-old knocked out his upper incisor doing something not so smart around our pool.
Within 45 minutes of the accident, we were at Dr. Balasanian's office, an oral surgeon on holiday standby, and he aligned the tooth for reinsertion. To my amazement, Dr. Frial also showed up immediately to assist and reattach the damaged braces. I had two dental specialists working on my boy, on a holiday within minutes of the accident! I am forever grateful and pleased with both doctors compassion, kindness, and expertise. Because of their dedication to their profession, my son has the best chance that the tooth will remain viable. These men did the best job anyone could ever manage. Thank you.” – T.S.