broken bracket

I Broke a Bracket – Now What?

Austin, TX – When you get your braces, the brackets are bonded to the teeth using a strong adhesive. However, while in braces, you could experience a loose bracket. It can be worrisome, but it isn’t a cause for concern, especially if you know how to handle it. Follow these tips from Dr. Gonzalez.

  1. Assess the damage. If you feel a loose bracket, the first step is to check out the potential damage. Your brackets are all linked together on the same wire, so check to be sure no other ones have come loose. If any look like they are about to fall off the wire, remove them and save them.
  2. Lessen any irritation. If the bracket is irritating or your wires are bent or poking, you’ll want to take care of this. Use orthodontic wax to hold a loose bracket in place to prevent irritation. You can also use wax on a poking or protruding wire. If wax doesn’t help ease discomfort from a poking wire, you can use a sanitized pair of nail clippers or a wire cutter to snip the wire behind the last bracket to which it is attached.
  3. Carefully tuck loose or protruding wires. We know not everyone may be comfortable clipping their wires; you can tuck them back in place instead. To do this, use a Q-tip or the eraser end of a pencil. Gently ease the wire back into its original position, or carefully bend it around a secured bracket to prevent irritation.
  4. Call us! To ensure your treatment stays on track, schedule an appointment with Pure Smiles Orthodontics as soon as possible. You’ll need us to re-attach the brackets and repair any damage to the wires.
  5. Remember to take proper care of your braces. One of the most common culprits of a loose bracket is eating food on the do not eat list. We know it can be difficult to avoid your favorite snacks during treatment, but it’s important for the life of your braces. Avoiding hard, crunchy, sticky, or chewy food will help prevent loose brackets or damaged wires.

Although a broken bracket isn’t an orthodontic emergency, you must have it repaired as soon as possible. Your braces can only do their job correctly when they are in proper working condition. The archwire can’t exert the pressure needed to guide your teeth if there isn’t a bracket. Too much pressure may be exerted on the wrong teeth, which can alter your treatment plan.

If you experience a broken bracket, loose wire, or any other issue during your time in braces, the Pure Smiles Orthodontic team is always here to help. Schedule an appointment today by calling 512-518-0217.