Orthodontic Breakages

Orthodontic Breakages

Orthodontic breakages occur occasionally and, although they may be a little upsetting for the patient and parents, they are usually fairly simple to treat.

For any breakages, please forward a photo of the area of concern to admin@tsvortho.com.au, along with the patients full name and contact number. One of our friendly staff will then be in touch to discuss your concerns. Alternatively you can phone our Practice directly on 07 4775 4433. Our well trained staff will be able to advise if the breakage can be repaired at the next scheduled visit or in some cases, organise a sooner appointment for this to be seen to.

Orthodontic Discomforts

The following orthodontic discomforts and their treatments are listed in the order of the least severe to the most severe. Only the most severe emergencies will require immediate attention by an orthodontist or medical doctor. The majority of these are easily treated with a follow-up by the patient's orthodontist.

Protruding Wire

Occasionally the end of a wire will work itself out of place and irritate the patient’s mouth. Use a suitable implement to push the wire so that it is flat against the tooth.

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Mouth Ulcers

Some patients are susceptible to episodes of mouth ulcers. While braces do not cause them, they may be precipitated or exacerbated by an irritation from braces.

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Lost Wire or Ligature

This is not an emergency. With some braces, tiny rubber bands or small, fine wires, known as ligatures, hold the wire to the bracket. If a rubber or wire ligature is lost, notify the Practice and we will advise whether the patient should be seen now or at their next scheduled visit.

Loose Brackets, Wires or Bands

If the braces have come loose in any way, the Practice should be notified and we will be able to advise whether the patient should be seen now or at their next scheduled visit.

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Ligatures Come Off

This is not an emergency. With some braces, if a rubber ligature should come off, you may be able to put it back in place using sterile tweezers. If a wire ligature comes loose, simply remove it with sterile tweezers. If the wire ligature is sticking out into the lip but is not loose, it may be bent back down to eliminate the irritation.

Irritation of Lips or Cheeks

Sometimes new braces can be irritating to the mouth, especially when the patient is eating. A small amount of non-medicinal relief wax makes an excellent buffer between metal and mouth.

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Food Caught Between Teeth

This is not an emergency, but can be a little uncomfortable or embarrassing for the patient. It is easily fixed with a piece of dental floss or use an interproximal brush or toothpick to dislodge food caught between teeth and braces.


It is normal for a patient to have discomfort for a day or two after braces or retainers are adjusted. But it can make eating uncomfortable. Reassure the patient that the discomfort is both normal and temporary. Encourage soft foods. Have the patient rinse the mouth with warm salt water. If the patient is allowed to have over-the-counter pain relievers, these may be effective.