Fixing Broken Braces

If you’re taking care of your braces, it’s rare to break them. But if your braces do happen to break and you can’t get an appointment to see us the same day, there are steps you can take to repair the braces (and alleviate the pain) for a short period of time. The following suggestions should allow you to safely fix your braces yourself in an emergency situation, but you should make an appointment immediately to get them repaired properly. Even after a few hours, a tooth that isn’t properly attached to the braces can start to move out of place.

If a piece of your braces breaks off, or if you can safely remove a portion of your braces with your fingers, you should put the broken piece(s) in a resealable bag and take it to your next appointment so we can evaluate the damage and make the necessary repairs.

If a wire attached to your braces is sticking out and poking you, try moving the wire back into place using the eraser end of a pencil. If that’s not handy, try a cotton swab.
If you can’t safely move the wire back into place, and covering it with wax doesn’t stop the pain, you can cut the protruding wire using a small fingernail clipper. Make sure you cut it as close to the tooth as you can. Again, you should make sure the fingernail clipper is clean before putting it in your mouth. If the remaining wire is still poking your cheek or gums, you can use wax to blunt the sharp end.
For those who are new to braces, there may be an adjustment period when your gums or the inside of your mouth become irritated by the braces. To create your own pain-relieving mouthwash, stir one teaspoon of salt into an eight-ounce cup of warm water and gargle with it after brushing your teeth. For more severe soreness and pain, you can take a pain reliever like ibuprofen as you would for a headache or muscle soreness.
Call us immediately after making any do-it-yourself repairs to your braces. We should see you as soon as possible to repair the damage, which will prevent future injuries and ensure your braces are aligning your teeth properly. If you have fixed your braces yourself and are waiting for an appointment, you should gargle regularly with a homemade salt water mixture to reduce pain and soreness. You should also try to eat soft foods and avoid candy, as well as hard crunchy foods, before your appointment.
Try to find the hardware and make an appointment right away to have it reapplied. If your wires come loose, use orthodontic wax or try to move the wire back into place. Then, call us for next steps. If it’s after hours, leave a message. We will get back to you as soon as possible.

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