Braces are one of the most common orthodontic treatments, but what happens if they break? It’s a scenario that can cause a bit of a stir, but rest assured; it’s not uncommon. At Ossi Orthodontics, we’re here to guide you through these unexpected hiccups, ensuring your journey to a perfect smile remains on track.
Understanding Braces and How They Can Break
Braces, whether they’re traditional metal, clear ceramic, or removable aligners, are strong devices built to withstand the tests of everyday life. However, they’re not invincible. Specific actions like eating hard or sticky foods, physical trauma, or improper care can lead to broken brackets or bent wires.
Physical trauma, such as a sports injury or even a simple fall, can result in damaged braces. Improper care can also lead to breakage. Rough brushing or using non-recommended cleaning tools can harm your braces. Lastly, removable aligners can get damaged if not stored properly when not in use. They can be stepped on, chewed up by pets, or exposed to extreme temperatures, causing them to warp or break.
Understanding these potential issues can help you take preventive measures and ensure the durability of your braces. Remember, the team at Ossi Orthodontics is always here to guide you through your orthodontic journey.
Immediate Steps to Take When Braces Break
Experiencing a break in your braces can be alarming, but don’t panic. Here are some quick steps you can take to handle the situation well:
1. Assess the Situation
Start by examining your mouth carefully. Identify the broken part – is it a bracket, a wire, or a band? If a wire has come loose, is it poking into your gums, cheek, or tongue? This early exam will help you explain the situation when you contact your orthodontist.
2. Contact Ossi Orthodontics
Once you’ve assessed the situation, contact Ossi Orthodontics. We’re here to help you navigate these unexpected accidents. When you call, provide a detailed description of the problem. This information will help us prepare for your visit and give the right solution.
Managing in the Meantime
There are some short-term fixes you can take while waiting for your appointment, including a few things you can do to ease discomfort and prevent further damage.
Managing Discomfort: If a broken wire is irritating, you can use a Q-tip to push it into a less bothersome position gently. Orthodontic wax can also be helpful. This soft, flexible material can be placed over the broken piece to create a smooth surface that won’t poke or scrape your mouth.
Maintaining Oral Hygiene is crucial to keep your mouth clean, even if your braces break. Continue to brush and floss regularly, but be extra gentle around the broken area to avoid causing more damage. If you find flossing around the broken part difficult, a water flosser can be a helpful tool.
Avoid DIY Repairs: It might be tempting to try and fix the break yourself, but it’s best to leave the repairs to the professionals. DIY fixes can often lead to more harm than good.
Preventing Future Breaks
While it’s nice to know that we can fix broken braces, prevention is always better. Here are some strategies to help prevent future breaks:
1. Mindful Eating: One of the most effective ways to prevent damage to your braces is by being mindful of what you eat. Hard, crunchy, or sticky foods can exert pressure on your braces, leading to breakages. Try to avoid foods like popcorn, nuts, hard candies, and chewy sweets. Opt instead for softer foods that require less chewing force.
2. Wear a Mouthguard: If you’re involved in sports or any physical activities that could result in a blow to the face, it’s essential to protect your braces with a mouthguard. This simple device can shield your braces from impact, preventing breakages and protecting your mouth from injury.
3. Proper Cleaning: Gentle yet thorough cleaning can help maintain the strength of your braces. Avoid using hard-bristled toothbrushes or aggressive brushing techniques that can damage your braces. Use a soft-bristled toothbrush and take your time to clean around each bracket and wire.
4. Regular Check-ups: Regular visits to Ossi Orthodontics allow us to monitor the condition of your braces and make necessary adjustments. These check-ups can help identify potential issues before they lead to breakages.
5. Dietary Changes: Along with avoiding hard and sticky foods, some dietary adjustments can also help prevent breakages. Try more soft foods that are easier on your braces. Cut larger foods into smaller pieces to ease the strain on your braces when biting.
Being Prepared with Ossi Orthodontics
By following these preventive measures, you can ensure your braces stay intact and your treatment progresses smoothly. At Ossi Orthodontics, we’re always here to provide guidance and support every step of the way. If you have any questions or are ready to begin your orthodontic treatment, give us a call or schedule your free consultation today!