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Emergency Care

Our Smiles Orthodontics team can help you in the event of an emergency.

I, Dr. Ethan Larson, and the team at Smiles Orthodontics work hard to provide quality orthodontic treatment and care to our patients at both our Puyallup and Graham locations. Whether you are looking to straighten your teeth with Invisalign, traditional or clear braces, we will create treatment plans designed to correct your unique orthodontic situation in the most efficient and comfortable way possible. While emergency situations are rare, the Smiles Orthodontic team is here to provide you and your family with the assistance you need.

What to Do in Case of an Emergency

Call our office as soon as possible if you break or loosen any of your appliances. Please do not come directly to the office – by calling us, you will allow us to create a time to see you. Even if you have a regular appointment scheduled, call to notify us if you need an appliance repaired. Below are some tips for what you can do at home to help ease the following orthodontic emergencies.

Loose Brackets

A bracket is a brace that is glued to the front of the tooth. A loose bracket is generally not an orthodontic emergency. If the loose bracket is sharp you may cover it with wax for comfort. Your situation may also require cutting a wire or sliding the bracket off the wire at night or over the weekend. If you need to cut a wire in case of emergency, you may use fingernail clippers that have been washed and sterilized in alcohol. Please call our office the next business day, so that we may schedule an appointment to repair your appliances.

Loose Bands

A band is a brace that wraps around a tooth like a ring.  A loose band that is not tightly glued to the teeth can damage the gums and promote tooth decay and should be removed or repaired. If the loose band is not painful, please leave a message at 253-848-4537 and one of our Smiles staff will call to schedule a repair appointment.

Wire Irritations

Sometimes discomfort caused by a wire on your braces can be resolved by moving the wire away from the irritated area with a cotton swab or eraser. If the wire will not move, try covering the end of it with a small piece of cotton or a small amount of wax. If the wire is painful, you can cut it with nail clippers that have been washed and sterilized in alcohol. If you cannot resolve the wire irritation, call our office for an appointment.

Lost Separators

A lost separator is not an emergency. If you cannot replace the separator, please call and leave a message and a Smiles Orthodontic team member will let you know if it needs to be replaced.

Discomfort with Orthodontic Treatment

During the first week after your braces are in place and routine adjustments are complete, you will likely feel some pain, soreness or discomfort. You may take acetaminophen or other non-aspirin pain relievers while you adjust to your new braces.

Injury to the Face, Teeth or Jaw

If you have been hit in the mouth, (hard enough that teeth or braces are loose), please call the emergency line 253-848-4537 and follow the prompts. A Smiles Team Member will instruct you on your next steps.

Make an Appointment Today

If you have any questions about an emergency situation you may be experiencing, we are happy to answer them for you. Dr. Larson and his staff do their best to remedy every emergency situation with care and comfort for his patients. To make an appointment at our Puyallup or Graham location, please fill out our appointment request form online or call us at 253-848-4537. We appreciate your business and hope to see you soon!

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