Emergencies & Care Visits

Care Concerns

Emergencies versus Comfort IssuesFort Collins Emergency Orthodontist

With braces, there is rarely need for an emergency orthodontist, but your teeth are constantly moving which may cause discomfort from time to time.  Most issues can be resolved by reading the tips below, contacting our comfort care advice line, and if needed, a visit to the orthodontist.

Although very rare, true orthodontic emergencies can occur.  If you are experiencing any swelling, reaction, or trauma that is affecting your breathing, call 911 immediately, and then contact our office for any follow-up.

Most orthodontic issues are minor and have a quick resolution. But if you aren’t close to home or a phone (like camping or traveling), here are a few tips for common problems when you feel like you might need an emergency orthodontist in Fort Collins, Greeley, Steamboat Springs, Laramie, Casper, or Cheyenne.


I am feeling something poking my cheek and/or tongue! You probably have a broken or loose wire.

Use orthodontic wax (available in most drug stores) to cover the area that is bothering you or use sugar free gum, as a short term solution to cover the pokey wire. Or better yet, clip the wire next to the bracket forward of the one that it is out. Use a finger nail clipper or small sterile wire clipper found at most craft stores for jewelry making. Then use Rincinol, a mouth wash found at most drugstores to calm a sore mouth or rinse with warm salt water.


My braces bracket is loose or came off!  You may have a broken or loose brace.

If bracket is on the wire; use wax (or sugar free gum) to temporarily hold in place until next appointment.

If bracket has fallen out; keep bracket in a bag and bring it to the next appointment. You may have a long wire if you lose the back bracket, which you may want to clip or use wax to cover until your next appointment.


Something is wrong with my MARA and/or bands!  Your appliance and/or upper and lower bands may be loose or parts are coming off.

If part of Mara is coming off (especially the part that hangs down), or if your Mara has come completely out, keep all parts in a bag and bring to your next visit.

For loose Mara or bands, use wax to hold bands in place until you can get in to see us.

I can’t attach my bands onto my bracket where it’s supposed to be!  Your hook could have fallen off where the bands attach to brace or your hook could be bent.

If the hook is missing, discontinue wearing your elastic bands until the hook can be replaced. If the hook is bent, use your fingernail to try and move the hook slightly away from your gum tissue.


That little spring is bothering me!  Your coil or small spring may be coming off or unraveling causing it to poke.

If the spring is partially unraveled, you can have a friend or family member wind the spring back onto the wire, cover with wax until a visit can be scheduled, or you can clip the piece off using a fingernail clipper or small, sterile wire cutter.

If the spring is completely off, rest easy, put the spring into a bag and bring to visit for replacement.


My Spring Jet appliance is bothering me!  Your Spring Jet could be irritating your palette or coming loose.

If the Spring Jet appliance is rubbing, irritating or bothering your palate, cover area with wax (or sugar free gum) and do warm salt water rinses.

If Spring Jet appliance is loose (it moves too much), use wax  (or sugar free gum) to hold in place until care visit can be scheduled.

The wire on the back of my teeth is off or lose. Your fixed/permanent retainer may be lose or has fallen off.

If the wire has come loose on a tooth, simply cover with wax and call to schedule an appointment to have it repaired. If the wire has come off completely, place in a bag and bring to your appointment to have it placed back on. Make sure to wear your plastic essix retainers to ensure that your teeth won’t shift.

I lost my retainer or it’s not fitting!  You may be worried that your teeth will move immediately.

If you lost your retainers, simply call to schedule an appointment to have impressions and get new retainers made. Teeth do have memory, so they will want to move back to how they were before braces.

If your retainers aren’t fitting, call to schedule an appointment for us to check the fit of your retainers.


Of course, call our office if you have questions about your treatment or if any issues may arise. If you feel you may need to schedule a care visit, call Fort Collins, Greeley, Steamboat Springs, Laramie, Casper, or Cheyenne, call 9-1-1.