When it’s summer in Memphis, orthodontists have come to expect a few classic “emergencies” with braces. Some situations are easily relieved by Dr. Mom until you can get to the office.
The most common orthodontic emergency in the summer is a wire poking. The discomfort comes from the wire poking the gum tissue around the back band or the cheek. This is usually caused by the wire becoming dislodged from a back band. The culprit is most often food: hard, crunchy or sticky.
Solution: get the end of the wire as dry as possible and place wax over the it until Dr. Piper can fix it. If this does not provide any relief, call the office. We have ordered new
waxes in summer flavors: pineapple, cotton candy and mint. Ask for some next appointment!
The second most common summer emergency is a bracket off, again caused by food or fingers in the mouth. Try to avoid absent-minded fiddling with your braces.
Solution: get the wiggly bracket as dry as possible, cover with wax until Dr. Piper can replace the bracket.
Third most common: loss of retainers. Don’t swim in them; don’t leave them on cafeteria trays. It’s tempting to leave retainers at home for the duration of camp or vacation, but teeth can move in as little as a week.
Solution: keep retainers in the case unless eating, brushing or swimming. Choose a case in an eye-catching color and keep it in the same place every time.